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Dissertation Guide on Wireless Mobile Communication Technology in Nigeria

The following dissertation guide seeks to investigate how wireless mobile communication technology could be implemented in rural areas of Nigeria, to help assist Public Health concerns.

Background research

The history of Nigeria dates back to 9000 years BCE. Beyond the slavery, postcolonial British rule, instability and civil wars, a democratic rule is now at the centre of Africa’s most populated country [1]. With a population of approximately 140 million peoples and an area almost spanning 1 million kilometres squared, although English is the official national language, regional languages still remain and are spoken across Nigeria.

Languages including Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba, reflect the four main groups of which the population of Nigeria are subdivided; inNorth Africa, Hausa and Fulani, in the southwest Yoruba and the Igbo in the southeast [2]. There are 37 federal states inNigeria, with Abuja as the State Federal Capital, situated at the epicentre of Nigeria[3]. A project of the public health foundation of Nigeria was set up with the primary objective to reenergise Nigerian Health communities and bridge relations with the health sector to improve health for Nigerians nationwide [4].

Numerous communication systems involving wireless communication for use in transmitting voice, video and data in local or wide areas have evolved within the last century including such things as wireless local area networks, multidirectional wireless cellular systems, wireless bridges and satellite communication systems [5]. Two companies Zain and the internationally renound Ericsson companies have collaborated with the United Nations into Nigeria, with the aim of alleviating poverty and bring a sense of autonomy to rural people in Nigeria. With the advent of the “Millennium Village Project” the future looks bright for the health of rural communities in Nigeria[6].

References

[1] Falola, Toyin; Heaton, Matthew M. A history of Nigeria. Cambridge University Press. (2008).

[2] http://www.trust.org/alertnet/country-profiles/nigeria/

[3] http://www.citypopulation.de/Nigeria.html#Land

[4] http://www.phfn.org/

[5] Encyclopedia of Wireless and MobileCommunications. Editor, Borko Furht. 2008. ISBN: 978-1-4200-4326-6 (hardback) 978-1-4200-5562-7 (electronic)

[6] http://www.itnewsafrica.com/?p=2678

Core issues that shall be addressed in the literature review:

Four main areas shall be the focal point of this review.

1) Federal Republic of Nigeria- country profile including; government, GDP, geography area, people; languages, population density, population growth, races/religions/tribes, poverty fraction.

2) Health system in Nigeria – with emphasis on Public health, history of public health inNigeria, how it was set up, development since, management programmes

3) Access to public health for remote and rural communities –, what is considered a “remote community” – choosing two/three regions, take an in depth look at the measures adopted to ensure patients in these areas have access to the health system. Is the health they receive different from that of other area such as the Capital Abuja, how is it different and what are the reasons for them.

4) Wireless Mobile Communication technology – What is itWhen was it invented, potential uses, how it has been utilised so far and in what circumstances. How will it be implemented into public health programmes, costs involved, what effects (positive/negative) will it have on the social and medical outlook for these remote regions.

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Analysis of a Possible Merger Between Vodafone and Verizon Communication

Introduction:

Mobile evaluation is only three decade old but there are major changes been seen year after year. There are more than 5 Billion mobile users all over the world which is served by different service provider. The major names in UK are:-

Vodafone
Orange
Three
T-Mobile
O2

The services include voice calling, Internet service, multimedia messaging, video conferencing, fixed line internet etc.

Vodafone Group

In 1982 Racal Electronics won a private sector UK cellular licence and they set up a new network although The first call was made by using Vodafone service is few minutes passed midnight on 1st January 1985, and by 1987 Vodafone was known as largest telecommunication company in the world. They are the first in business to launch Vodapage which provides 80% of UK population paging service. By year 2010 Vodafone proved their significant global presence over 30 countries and over 40 partners markets in Europe and worldwide. The Group operates in three geographic regions Europe, Africa and Central Europe, Asia Pacific and Middle East and has an investment in Verizon Wireless in the United States. By market capitalization, Vodafone Group plc. Is one of the largest companies providing service to more than 500 million users in Europe and worldwide.

The group’s main principal activity is to provide mobile telecommunication service to mobile users and operate a fixed line services for business and offices in privet and government sector. Vodafone has tried and retain their leadership in telecommunication market by providing better value, better product, and services in Europe and worldwide .Their global strategy is to embrace voice, data and internet service and to focus on satisfying customer’s needs and for that they had invested large amount for developing and launching new services for customers such as free mobile application, money transfer service, fixed and individual line internet service, Vodafone 360 etc.

Vodafone group’s objective is to achieve and maintain a position of dominance in its markets in worldwide .The company has maintained a strategy of focusing on global mobile communication and providing network to allow its customers to communicate using mobile product and services. Their growth strategy is

Attract, service and retain high value customers
Continued geographic expansion
Provision of new products and services to support growth in revenues from both voice and data.

http://online.vodafone.co.uk/dispatch/Portal/appmanager/vodafone/wrp?_nfpb=true&_pageLabel=template09&pageID=PAV_0015

Vodafone and Verizon Wireless Merger

Vodafone group has able to establish his network and on several continent including Europe, Asia, Africa, north and South America. Joint venture with Hutchison Essaar is their one of the biggest investment. Vodafone group had developed their business successfully all over the world apart from America. They had entered to USA in 1999 merger with air touch communication and later in 2003 they also invested in Verizon wireless in which they hold 45% but still after all these they are not able to get success which they achieved in other countries.

Verizon communication who owns the 55% shares in Verizon wireless is formed in 2000 mergers between two biggest companies in USA Bell Atlantic and GTE. The merger also made Verizon wireless a largest wireless network provider in USA and after that they had managed well to involve in good deal such as acquisition of Alltel Corporation who ranks eighth largest wireless network provider in USA with approx. 800000 customers. Currently Verizon communication owns most of the shear in company and management decisions in Verizon wireless.

Ownership Issue

Vodafone group has successful business in UK and Europe but even after 10 years in USA telecom Market they still not able to expand their business. After investing in Verizon wireless they are trying to grow in USA but they are still waiting to achieve that. At one stage there was a persistent speculation of possible merger between these two companies which will be helpful for the future of both the companies. There is huge battle going on these companies for ownership of Verizon wireless and both companies had shown interest buying out the rest of the shares.

The USA telecom market is growing rapidly and with every opportunity these two companies try to be on top of each other which are one of the reasons behind delaying the possible merger between Vodafone and Verizon wireless. After financial downturn CEO of Verizon communication advised Vodafone to sell their shares in Verizon wireless which also shows the business environment between these two organisations is unstable. As research figure shows that if Vodafone and Verizon wireless obtain full merger in future the company could worth ?120 billion .Vodafone group had a market value of ?77 billion and Verizon communication $86 billion (?57billion). Vodafone group had been expecting merger between two companies should be 60:40 in Verizon wireless but the partner company is not agreed on these terms. Although with less market value Verizon wireless generates significant and continuous cash flow. They had paid dividends to his shareholder which is Vodafone group till 2005 but after they stop explaining reason is to reducing a down debts of the company. As per Bloomberg report there are three possibilities could be seen between this two organisations

1) Full merger of these two companies

2) Verizon wireless would start paying dividend to Vodafone

3) One of the partners to sell their share either to each other or to the third party.

Many of the city business analyses have seen potential in these companies and they think they should solve their problems and issues in Verizon wireless which could worth ?40 billion. Royal bank of Scotland one of the largest organisations in banking sector in UK suggested that Vodafone should either merge with Verizon communication or they should sell their stake in Verizon wireless for better profitability. Vodafone CEO Vittorio Coalo also thinks the same way and he said merger is the best alternative to solve the problems in Verizon wireless than other. They had discussed number of options earlier in 2010 which could be helpful foe Verizon wireless future but they also think merger would be more complex because of competition between UK and USA businesses compared to the other option such as separation between Verizon communication and Verizon wireless.

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/b1d3df72-43e7-11dd-842e-0000779fd2ac.html#axzz1KDYiXA2E

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/90bb3ae4-3ab5-11df-b6d5-00144feabdc0,s01=1.html#axzz1KDYiXA2E

http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2006/mar/07/newmedia.citynews

Business environment with USA Partner

External environment

Vodafone group is facing huge competition from his American partner and their rivals in business such as AT&T wireless. Verizon communication had a joint venture with Vodafone in Verizon wireless putting pressure to sell their 45% stake in company. Expected merger between Vodafone and Verizon wireless is still on hold but in competitive telecom market partner group is bearing down Vodafone. The group operates their business from United Kingdom and provides services more than 27 countries in 5 continents. The group 80% of revenue is comes from their UK business but existence in emerging markets like India makes their position strong in telecom sector. Verizon communication is trying continuously to buy the Vodafone stake in company and ruled on Verizon wireless. In 2006 both group had played down ownership battle for Verizon wireless but they failed. Since 2000 when Vodafone group was new to US telecom market and Verizon communication was newly formed company had pooled out their US wireless assets. Both are the largest wireless network providers in world had suffered from periodic tension.

Mr Seidenbeg CEO of Verizon communication said in an interview that he would like 100% of earning from Verizon wireless because they are doing 100% work. In 2008 business analysts reported the Vodafone stake value in Verizon wireless is been increased by $10 billion to $60 and even after 2005 they had not received a dividends from Verizon wireless it seems that group thinking positive about the merger with Verizon communication.

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/c20625be-44a7-11de-82d6-00144feabdc0,s01=2.html#axzz1KDYiXA2E

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/b1d3df72-43e7-11dd-842e-0000779fd2ac,Authorised=false.html?_i_location=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.ft.com%2Fcms%2Fs%2F0%2Fb1d3df72-43e7-11dd-842e-0000779fd2ac.html&_i_referer=#axzz1KDYiXA2E

PESTAL Analysis

Political

Vodafone group had always focused of customer satisfaction for that they had shifted their business approach towards customer benefits. They had moved on from unit pricing to unit based tariff. Vodafone group had invested in United States to explore their business and make more profit from highly developed market. The group outsource their US business from outside and so they had considered different international laws in order to explore their business in other countries. They had considered the tread restriction which is also important in political factor.

Recently communication commission in USA made attempt to bring telecommunication sector under government oversight more specifically put under government regulation but apparently US court denied this appeal for the D.C. circuit ruling which regards information service underlying of telephone rules.

Economical

Economical factors are interconnected with political factors which might affect the development of the company. The economic factors include growth rate, exchange rates, interest rates and inflation. These factors are pretty important which gives right and accurate cost to the customer so that everybody can aware of their product. During the investment in Verizon group Vodafone group had received returns in form of dividend till 2005 but after that they stopped paying explain reason to reducing the lower debt. In 2009 Verizon communication used Verizon wireless $5 billion to pay off their debts. Vodafone and Verizon wireless have 87.8 million retail customers all over America. Vodafone group owns 45% share and both the partner companies are made compelling amount of stock in telecom infrastructure class. According to Bernstein Report there are four option Verizon communication have to pay the internal borrowing which are either they could rebuilt their debt level or they could just buy Vodafone 45% share which could be more expensive. Another option they have is to start paying dividends to Vodafone or a merger with partner group.

Social factors

Social factors are very important for the development of the company more than any other. This is because social factors have more impact on customers regarding to the product and services. Vodafone group had invested in social factors and to make them effective they are mainly focusing on education, enterprise, health and welfare. The group runs several charitable trusts in USA and Europe which is making positive contribution to the local communities in specific projects which are run by Vodafone and Verizon group. The group had also made investment in youth projects to draw a traditional philosophy. In 2001 they had managed to raise ?3 million donation through these welfare which helped youth people all over the world to take informed decisions and choices. The group also founded Peace Parks international foundation which supports in sustainable economic development conservation of biodiversity and regional peace. Both groups also a part of voluntary service champagne to fight against HIV and AIDS and other deceases like Cancer.

Technological factors

Technological factors focuses on research and development activities which includes development of new technology and services. Mobile phone industry is growing rapidly a great deal of technological changes and development is continued to be seen. Vodafone group offers variety of mobile phones with latest technologies to their customers. 3g technology is already helping companies to increase their sales revenues. However Vodafone has brought additional responsibility to protect young people from inappropriate content, gambling and violent games.

Environmental Factors

Environmental factors also important in successful business although telecom industries impact on environment is very small as compare to other industries however these companies have to work on to reduce it . Vodafone group has started CO2 ring to reduce energy consumption which will produce less carbon. Company estimated during year 2008 their business in Europe, Australia, NZ had produced 1.23 million CO2 and they aims with this ring they will reduce emission by 50% by 2020. Vodafone group is also worked in mobile phone disposals in which they helped to developed support industry to minimize phone disposals. They also had developed guidelines to reduce greenhouse gas emission and to monitoring progress.

Legal factors

Legal factors are very important for any organisation to form a business and it’s also important for organisation to follow them. Vodafone group have their business all over the world and throughout their business journey they had worked as per the laws and restrictions. However in some issues they had gone beyond government regulation while working in competitive market. Group also believes to retain the position in market companies must exceed the legal and industry self regulation.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2008/apr/22/vodafonegroup.telecoms

http://www.vodafone.com/content/dam/vodafone/about/sustainability/reports/2000-01_vodafonecr.pdf

http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/metro/article_809fa95b-31a9-5f14-aa3f-c3c97cf20cb6.html

http://www.iese.edu/research/pdfs/OP-0155-E.pdf

http://www.bignerds.com/papers/17537/Pestel-Analysis-Of-Vodafone/

Internal Environment

Verizon wireless works under management board of Vodafone group and Verizon communication. Although it’s true that Vodafone is included in board decisions but still they don’t have full control because of fewer stakes in firm. It’s been seen several times when Verizon communication opposed the Vodafone decision. Both companies had shown interests in buying Verizon wireless not ready for any settlement which shows their business instability. It all started in 2000 when Vodafone and Verizon communication bided for air touch communication and apparently Vodafone group won the bid which helped them to enter into USA telecom market. In March 1995 US cellular A&B PCS auctioned for spectrum in 1900 MHz range in which Air touch USA, Bell Atlantic, Nynex and US west formed their joint venture called Prime co communication. Later in 1999 when Vodafone merged with Air touch Partner Company approached Air touch Vodafone about the merging wireless communication (air touch Vodafone, bell electronics, prime co) to form a Verizon Wireless but due to FCC regulation prime co and Verizon territories and region was split. When Vodafone merged with air touch CEO of Vodafone Air touch Arun Sarin was involved in various other formations of partnership’s and technology dimensions as well. Sarin was also involved in decision to use CDMA technology over GSM in root of Verizon wireless network but Verizon communication opposed to this decision specifying CDMA technology to use on Vodafone network.

Both the group had formal meeting about the company expansion it seems very often when these come to any mutual decision. In 2004 Vodafone considered to buying AT&T wireless Verizon communication turn out the deal to take over joint venture. Vodafone however managed well to gain profit from their business and Verizon wireless also started paying dividends in 2009 and continued to gain its value.

Michel Porters Diamond Model

Michel Porters diamond model form competitive advantage helps to understand the comparative position of the organisation in global competition. The model helps to measure company performance over geographic regions.

Rivalry, Firm strategy, structure

Vodafone group business strategy is to meet social needs of the customers which create opportunity to increase profit. Vodafone group also made consideration in developing product and services which meet the specific needs of customer in local market. The group had set their goals to be leading communication provider but huge battle with competitor and instable business in USA they are facing problem to keep up the leading position. Vodafone group runes their business all over the world and major parts covered by group are in UK and Europe. Their UK business produce 80% of revenue were they are facing competition from O2, Orange, and T-mobile. Were in USA they are competing by their partner firm who is second largest in USA and who owns most of the Verizon company stake. Verizon wireless have their business all over the America who competing against AT&T who recently announced merger deal with T-mobile USA which made them strongest and leader in US telecom wireless network.

Demand Conditions

Demand condition plays crucial role in porter’s diamond model in business. Vodafone group have successful business in UK and Europe because they are able to evaluate demands and expectations and to fulfil them. In late 90s telecom sector was focused on providing fixed line services and in early 21 century wireless technology was introduced who gains popularity in very quick session. So as demand changed mobile companies are grown in telecom market. Vodafone group also considered customers demand they introduced I-Phone in 2010 and in first week they sold more than 400000 cells. In USA also they sold I-phone through their joint venture company and group was aware of the demand but they did not imagined the sales figure could go so high were demand was more and supply was less and therefore it is very important in business to measure demand in customer satisfaction point .

Related Supporting Industries

Related supporting industries are very important in relation to the grown of business. Vodafone group is working with few other companies on their territory. Vodafone group have been supported by air touch communication their partnership with Verizon communication is also somehow helping them to grow in US telecom market. Vodafone group also developed good relationship with mobile phone producing companies which is helping them to fulfil customer demands. In 2010 they made partnership with Apple to launch I-Phone which was great hit.

The group also helped to develop mobile disposal industries they think disposal of mobile phone is very big problem and with their help this industries trying reduce this problem and help environment. They are also working with few other companies in telecom market to reduce CO2.

Factor conditions

Vodafone group had always looked for the opportunity in other countries to grow their business. They had considered emerging countries and made investment. Competitive environment also affects factors condition customers always have choices to choose between fixed lines or mobile its companies have to attract them to be in competition.

http://incarnationrocks.com/2010/11/14/information-about-the-history-and-evolution-of-vodafone-as-a-companyhistory-of-vodafonevodafone-history/

http://news.cnet.com/8301-30686_3-20055922-266.html

http://www.usatoday.com/tech/news/2011-02-01-iphone01_ST_N.htm

http://www.vodafone.com/content/annualreport/annual_report09/exec_summary/op_environment_and_strategy.html

Recommendation and Conclusion

Vodafone group has got successes in America but their business and relationship with partners is not stable. Vodafone group had already shown their co-operation while developing their business in US telecom market and working with Verizon communication. I think Vodafone group should try for merger with Verizon communication to obtain and retain their leading position. Verizon had a control over management decision and they had paid return in form of dividends to Vodafone until 2005 but after that they stopped paying explain reason is to reduction of lower debts and for almost four years Vodafone group did not received any returns for their stake.

USA telecom market is moving rapidly so buyout of Verizon wireless or 50:50 partnerships could be a very good option for Vodafone although both options are never opened for group. I think they should try to maintain good relationship with partner group for the better future of Verizon wireless. Currently Verizon wireless is a second largest wireless network provider in America which was takeover by AT&T in 2010 in multimillion dollar merger with T- mobile USA.

Verizon communication should pay the dividend to their partner group in future or they could try to buy Vodafone stake in Verizon wireless which are quite expensive. The company currently serves nearly 93 million customers all over the America which shows the strong position and settled business of the Verizon wireless in American market. But recent controversial business environment between partner group could affect the market value and shares of Verizon wireless. Vodafone group had experience in managing business in different countries so they can be useful for Verizon wireless in

subject of developing new products and services, entering new markets. The recent merger between AT&T had already affected the positions of Verizon wireless which also knocked them out from top position to second and so if the new group’s strategy is to pay off then Verizon wireless will suffer in business.

http://blogs.investors.com/click/index.php/home/60-tech/1656-would-dividend-payments-kill-talk-of-verizon-vodafone-merger

http://incarnationrocks.com/2010/11/14/information-about-the-history-and-evolution-of-vodafone-as-a-companyhistory-of-vodafonevodafone-history/

Appendix

1.SWOT analysis on Vodafone

To identify company’s internal and external strength and weakness swot analysis is very important.

Strengths

Vodafone group have their business all over the world and they have ability to grow in many countries.
Vodafone group have nearly 500 million customers in nearly 40 countries and 5 continent.
They have very strong platform which gives them power to work in R&D to innovate new products and devices in subject to the growth of the market.
Group’s biggest strength is their customers. They had managed well to maintain good relationship with their service users.
Good decision makers and efficient people on the board is also Vodafone group’s strongest link.

Weakness

Vodafone group’s biggest weakness is the capital expenditure over fixed tangible assets. In past five years their average depreciation charge been exceeded by 58% which also suggest that group might have cash shortage in future.
Vodafone group has been spending lot of money on research and developing new product and services. So if the product fails in market group could face heavy loss.
Legal issues with partner companies are also their business weakness

Opportunity

New innovations and technologies and services are expected to be major hit in telecom market. Vodafone group always try to bring new services for their users which will use by them for data transfer, calling and internet.
Mobile phone industry is growing very rapidly were persuasion to have at list 1 mobile gives opportunity to mobile companies to increase their size and share in market.
If Vodafone merge with their US partner will give them opportunity to establish and make their position stronger in US market.

Threats

Vodafone group work in developing new technologies and services and if something goes wrong with product it will leave company with heavy loss.
As industry grows mobile companies have to take special care so that no one can misuse the technology and at some point they also have to accept the decisions made by social or political reasons.
Competition from other companies who serves same product and services.

2) Porter’s generic strategies

Relating to the SWOT analysis, Porter (1980) identified three generic strategies for competitive advantage, which can represent a distinctive strength of a company. These are shown in the diagram below:

Vodafone use the cost leadership strategy and differentiation but do not adopt the focus strategy as they do not focus on a niche market. Vodafone needs to compete on a cost leadership strategy because number portability means that people will move to whoever can provide a reliable service the cheapest and by becoming the lowest cost producer in the industry through economies of scales allows Vodafone to compete on price with other producers to earn higher unit profits which in turn achieves competitive advantage through driving down costs. Vodafone also differentiate themselves through providing customers with added value through their product features and quality that are unique and different from their competitors.

Marketing strategy

In order to retain market leadership, Vodafone has established a set of marketing objectives. These are to:

• Obtain new customers

• Keep the customers it already has

• Introduce new technologies and services

• Continue to develop the Vodafone brand.

Vodafone is achieving these objectives by continually updating their range of phones and services offered to keep ahead of its competitors. Vodafone also communicates with its customers to keep them well informed of the benefits of all Vodafone products.

Marketing mix

The marketing mix consists of many different factors, which are grouped together into four main categories: product, place, price and promotion.

Product

Vodafone’s products have many different features which provides customers with opportunities to chat, play games, send and receive pictures, change ring tones, receive information about travel and sporting events, obtain billing information and view video clips and send video messages.

Place

Vodafone UK operates over 300 of its own stores it also sells through independent retailers e.g. Carphone Warehouse and Phones 4 U. Customers are able to see and handle products they are considering buying and staff are on hand to ensure customers’ needs are matched with the right product and to explain the different options available to them.

Price

Vodafone offer various pricing structures to suit different customer groups, monthly price plans are available as well as prepay options and phone users can top up their phone online. Also Vodafone gives NECTAR reward points for every one pound spent on calls, text messages, picture messages and ring tones.

Promotion

Vodafone has worked with icons in the past such as David Beckham to communicate its brand values they use advertising on TV, billboards, magazines and in other media outlets to reach large audiences and spread their brand image and message effectively. Their stores have special offers, promotions and point of sale posters to attract customers inside the stores to buy and Vodafone actively develop good public relations through sending press releases to national newspapers and magazines to explain new products and ideas.

Also relating to the product aspect of the marketing mix, the Boston matrix represents the company’s portfolio according to where the products stand regarding market share and growth.

Bibliography
Caroline Booth (2010) Strategic procurement (electronic resource through Anglia Ruskin library) organisation suppliers and supply chain for competitive advantage, London Philadelphia New Delhi page 26.
David L. Rainey (2010) Enterprise- wide strategic management (electronic resource through Anglia Ruskin library) Cambridge university press page 70
J. Brits and G.H.K. Botha ,M.E. Herselman, Tshwane Conceptual Framework for Modelling Business Capabilities

Retrieved from

http://proceedings.informingscience.org/InSITE2007/InSITE07p151-170Brits297.pdf

Claire Capon Understanding Strategic Management (2008)

Pearson education ltd (page 33-53) retrieved from

http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=BvD4FtMWAloC&pg=PA27&dq=White+C+Strategic+Management&hl=en&ei=xkG2TfHEOpHP4wb4odT0Dw&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=book-thumbnail&resnum=1&ved=0CEEQ6wEwAA#v=onepage&q=White%20C%20Strategic%20Management&f=false

Robert M. Grant (2007) Contemporary Strategy Analysis John Wiley and Sons (page 271-322) retrieved from

http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=zFkXk7KbM-kC&pg=PA148&dq=Grant+R+M+(2007),+Contemporary+Strategy+Analysis,+Blackwell&hl=en&ei=YES2TY6YNs7j4wbp_qQJ&sa=X&oi=book_result&ct=book-thumbnail&resnum=1&ved=0CEUQ6wEwAA#v=onepage&q=Grant%20R%20M%20(2007)%2C%20Contemporary%20Strategy%20Analysis%2C%20Blackwell&f=false

Website

www.ft.com

www.dailytelegraph.com

www.gurdian.co.uk

www.vodafone.co.uk

www.verizonwireless.com

www.bigneard.com

www.academic.mintal.com

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Crisis Communication During Volcanic Emergencies: Japanese Earthquake

Abstract:

Increased exposure to volcanic hazard, particularly at Japan, is driving an urgent and growing need for improved communication between monitoring scientists, emergency managers and the media, in advance of and during volcanic crises. The findings of the Japan volcano surveys point up the critical importance, More than a week after the nation of Japan declared an emergency at the TEPCO Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant in Fukushima prefecture, the “haze” of the incident is just starting to clear. Power has been restored to two of six reactors at the Daiichi nuclear plant and slowly the nuclear situation is coming under control. While some good news is emerging from Japan recriminations and stories about TEPCO’s long history of “false reporting” are now emerging. The worst of the nuclear crisis may now be resolved, but the war of words is just beginning. If it is in India it will take importance on (1) Bringing together monitoring scientists, emergency managers, and representatives of the media, well in advance of a volcanic crisis, and (2), ensuring that procedures and protocols are in place that will allow, as far as possible, effective and seamless cooperation and coordination when and if a crisis situation develops. Communication During Volcanic Emergencies is designed to promote and encourage both of these priorities through providing the first source-book addressing working relationships and inter-linkages between the stakeholder groups, and providing examples of good and bad practice.

Introduction:

The magnitude-9.0 offshore earthquake on March 11 triggered a tsunami that slammed minutes later into Japan’s northeast, wiping out towns and knocking out power and backup systems at the coastal Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear power plant. Police said more than 11,000 bodies have been recovered, but the final death toll is expected to exceed 18,000. Hundreds of thousands remain homeless, their homes and livelihoods destroyed. Damage could amount to $310 billion — the most expensive natural disaster on record, the government said.

The plant has been leaking radiation that has made its way into vegetables, raw milk and tap water as far away as Tokyo. Residents within 12 miles of the plant were ordered to leave and some nations banned the imports of food products from the Fukushima region. Suspicions that dangerously radioactive water is leaking from damaged nuclear fuel rods. The contaminated water has been emitting radiation exposures more than four times the amount the government considers safe for workers and must be pumped out before electricity can be restored to the cooling system. That has left officials struggling with two crucial but sometimes-contradictory efforts: pumping in water to keep the fuel rods cool and pumping out contaminated water and safely storing it. Nuclear safety official Hidehiko Nishiyama said cooling the reactors had taken precedence over concerns about leakage.

Crisis in Japan:

Crisis communication as part of a larger crisis management plan has several key elements. The goal of public relations in a crisis is to both inform and to convey a larger sense of control over the unfolding incident. Public relations managers and Public Information Officers must act quickly and consistently to deliver accurate information and to set expectations. Good crisis communication should be forthcoming about what is known and not known. Disasters are hardly predictable and often decision makers are faced with complicated dilemmas in the absence of complete information. Acknowledging the unknown and what is being done to address the knowledge gap is just as important as outlining what is known. Never in the context of crisis communications should the message be untrue or misleading. Finally, crisis communication should engage all of the stakeholders in an incident – everyone with an interest in the outcome of an incident. Between these stakeholders, messaging should be coordinated and consistent.

With the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant there were many issues in the communication to the outside world about what exactly was unfolding at the plant. Initially the flow of information was slow and inconsistent. Although the earthquake occurred at 2:45pm local time followed closely by the tsunami which disabled the generators supporting pumps to cool the nuclear fuel at Daiichi, the first report of a significant incident did not occur until 8:15pm. By 10pm the Japanese government initiated a limited 3km evacuation around the plant. TEPCO’s 10pm press release indicated only that radiation monitors detected a “departure from normal”. In press conferences TEPCO held with the media, executives with the power company were vague about what was happening and were not prepared to answer questions posed by the media.

The clarity of messages about the unfolding nuclear disaster also contributed to the confusion about the severity of the incident. As an example, the Japanese government initially ordered an evacuation for 3km around the Daiichi plant. By 7am on 12-Mar, the day after the earthquake and tsunami, the evacuation order was expanded to 10km. By 13-Mar, the evacuation order was expanded to 20km. The creeping evacuation distances conveyed a message that the incident was growing out of hand. In the absence of objective information about radiation levels detected around the Daiichi plant, many people filled this gap with speculation that the incident was potentially growing into a nuclear cataclysm. A single proactive 20km evacuation order, on the other hand, would have conveyed a sense of decisiveness with the same outcome.

Messaging during the incident differed between stakeholders. Information from TEPCO, the operator of the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant, was understated and incomplete. The Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry, which oversees nuclear plants in Japan, was widely absent from information dissemination. The IAEA, the UN’s nuclear monitoring organization, accused Japan of not being forthcoming about what was happening at the Daiichi plant. In the US, the Surgeon General suggested people in California should buy potassium iodine while the CDC said exactly the opposite. These different voices fostered a sense of confusion and suggestions by many that TEPCO and the Japanese government were hiding something. More than any other communication problem, the mismatch of messages from different sources caused the greatest damage to the credibility of everyone involved.

My own country (INDIA) can handle the communication crisis in the following way:

1.India will identify stakeholders in the crisis communication process well ahead of any incident. Train these stakeholders in the crisis management process and educate them about the importance of consistent message between organizations.

2.Clarity of actions and words is important. Public relations personnel and Public Information Officers must be prepared with information to answer questions from the media. If the answer to the question is unknown, acknowledge it. If the answer requires research, find out then follow up with the requestor.

3.The small incidents are as important as the big incidents. Although small incidents do not always warrant much media attention, failing to address them can be a problem when major incidents strike. The day before the Daiichi nuclear plant disaster no one was writing about TEPCO’s history of false reports. In the weeks to come, media stories and exposes will reveal the gaps in TEPCO handling of small incidents. If TEPCO had handled the small incidents well or at least worked to improve over time, there would be little to write about.

4.Practice. Any process or plan is only as good as the execution. Improve the odds of solid execution at time of crisis by practicing crisis communication often.

The best thing is to have a plan of action prepared in advance. That way, you can react swiftly and smartly when a crisis hits.

Conclusion:

Population rise and increasing urbanisation are driving a marked upward trend in the incidence of natural disasters. This trend is already being reflected in the numbers of lethal volcanic events and in a rise in the number of volcano-related deaths. the average number of deaths per year due to volcanic activity, in the 17th–19th centuries, was 315, this figure has climbed to 917 for the 20th century and 491 volcanic ‘events’ during the 20th century, in which people were killed, injured or affected in some way, and more than half of which resulted in loss of life, At least 500 million people currently live within the danger zones of active volcanoes, and this number is certain to climb substantially.

Most importantly, emergency plans must address the issue of seamless communication between the main stakeholder groups, and ensure that the mechanisms that underpin effective communication during a volcanic crisis are in place long before a volcano shows signs of unrest. Where eruptions are frequent, such measures need to be in place now or in the very near future. Messages from all the stakeholder groups must be as simple and concise as possible and must address instructions and recommendations on what to do next as well as inform of the prevailing situation. All efforts need to focus on the building of trust between stakeholders, the maintenance of good working relationships, and the safeguarding of an open and continuous information flow between all key players.

REFERENCES:

Fearn- Banks, Kathleen, 2006, Crisis Communications: a case book approach, 3rd Edition, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Nichen, 2009, Institutionalizing Public relations: A case Study of Chinese government crisis Communication on the 2008 Sichuan Earthquake, Public relations review, Vol 35, 3, 187-198.

Otto, Lerbinger, 1997, The Crisis Manager: facing risk and responsibility, New Jersey: Lawrence Erlbaum.

Ray, Sally J., 1961, Strategic Communication in Crisis Management: lessons from the airline industry, USA:Green wood Publishing group.

Robert R. Ulmer, Seeger.W,2007, post-crisis communication and renewal: Expanding the parameters of post-crisis discourse, Public relations review, Volume 33, issue 2, P.P 130-134

Seeger, Matthew W, 2003 Communication and organizational crisis, Westport: Praeger Publishers.

SEEGER W, Barbara Reynolds, 2005, Crisis and Emergency risk Communication as an integrative model, Journal of Health Communication, 10:43-55.

Voight, 1989 B. Voight, The 1985 Nevado del Ruiz volcano catastrophe: anatomy and retrospection, Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, 42 (1989), pp. 151–188

W.J.Mc GUIRE, solama.M.C, 2009, Improving communication during volcanic crisis on small, Valnerable islands, Journal of Volcanology and Geothermal Research, Vol 183, Issue 1-2, P.P 63-75.

W.Timothy, Coombs, 20011, Ongoing Crisis Communication, Planning, Managing, and responding, 3rd edition, P.P-139, USA:Sage Publications.

Categories
Free Essays

Modelling of underwater acoustic communication network

1. INTRODUCTION

The research on underwater acoustic networks (UAN) is gaining attention due to their important applications for military and commercial purposes. Underwater communication applications mostly involve long term monitoring of selected ocean areas. The traditional approach for ocean bottom monitoring is to deploy underwater sensors, record the data and recover the instruments. However this approach creates long delays in receiving the recorded information and if a failure occurs before the recovery, all the data is lost. The ideal solution for these applications is to establish real time communication between underwater instruments and a communication center within a network configuration .

Basic underwater networks (UAN) are formed by establishing a two way acoustic link between various instruments such as autonomous underwater vehicles and sensors. the network is then connected to backbone such as internet, through the RF link. This configuration creates an interactive environment where scientists can extract real time data from multiple underwater instruments. The data is transferred to the control station when it is available hence data loss is prevented until a failure occurs[2]. Underwater networks can also be used to increase the operation range of underwater vehicles. The feasible range of underwater vehicles is limited by the acoustic range of a single modem which varies from 10 to 90 km [2].However due to high cost involved in underwater devices it is necessary that the deployed network be highly reliable so as to avoid failure of monitoring mission due to failure of single or multiple devices.

From the communication point of view, underwater environment is much different from its terrestrial counterpart. Consequently, the research of UAN’s becomes different and exhibits unique features. It is because:

The attenuation of acoustic signals increase with frequency and range resulting in extremely small feasible band.
The propagation speed of acoustic wave is 1500m/sec which is several orders of magnitude lower than radio waves [3], thus giving large propagation delays.
The channel characteristics vary with time and highly depend on transmitter and receiver. The fluctuating nature of the channel causes distortion in the signals.
Due to the variable acoustic environment UAN differ in many aspects such as ranging from network topologies to protocols of all layers compared with the ground one.
2. NETWORK TOPOLOGIES

The network topology directly influences network capacity of the underwater channel which is severely limited. It becomes important to organize network topology in such a way that no congestion occurs or in other words designing of network topology with single point of failure should be avoided. Underwater networks can be composed of entirely fixed nodes, entirely mobile nodes or a mixture of both. The network topology typically need to be ad hoc in nature either because communicating nodes are moving or basic acoustic conditions change with time. There are three basic network topologies that can be used to interconnect network nodes [3].

(1)Centralized topologyIn this topology, each network host is connected to central station known as hub of the network. The network is connected to a backbone at this central station. Deep under water acoustic networks (UAN) has been tested using this configuration where a surface buoy with both an acoustic and RF modem acts as the hub and controls the communication to and from ocean bottom instruments. This topology is considered the easiest topology to design and implement .The advantage of this topology is the simplicity of adding additional nodes. A major disadvantage of this topology is the presence of single failure point.If the hub fails, the entire network goes down. Further, the network cannot cover large areas due to limited range of single modem.

(2)Distributed of point to point topology This topology provides point to point links between every node of the network. There is just one hop from a node to any other node, hence routing is not necessary. The major disadvantage of this configuration is that excessive power is needed for communicating with widely spread nodes. Further, near far problem [4] is much prominent in which a node can block signals of the neighboring node.

(3)Multihop topology In this topology nodes are involved to send a message from source node to destination. Hence routing is needed which is handled by intelligent algorithms that can adapt to changing conditions.Multihop networks can cover large areas since the range of the network is now determined by number of nodes rather than the range of the modem. The only problem with this topology is that of packet delay as the number of hops increase

3. MEDIA ACCESS TECHNIQUES

Due to scarce bandwidth, long propagation delay and high error rate, underwater nodes in a UAN have to share the available resources. The three basic access techniques are

(1) Frequency division multiple access(FDMA)FDMA divides the bandwidth into several subbands and assigns one of them to a particular user. The band is used by this user only till it is released.FDMA may not be efficient in underwater environment. The available bandwidth is extremely limited .By dividing the band into smaller sub bands , the coherence bandwidth of the transmission channel can be larger than FDMA subchannel.This will result in severe fading .another issue is that mechanism could in inefficient in bursty[ 4] traffic because bandwidth is fixed for each subband and cannot be adjusted [5] .

(2) Time division multiple access(TDMA) In this multiple access scheme time frame is divided into slots and each slot is assigned one individual user. Each user transmits in the assigned slot. The advantage of TDMA is power saving which is extremely critical in underwater environment. Since each user transmit only in its assigned slot, transmitter could be turned off during the idle period to save energy.TDMA is also flexible in the way that data rate of users can be increased on demand. The same hardware can be used to transmit and no extra hardware is needed e.g. to add another time slot for a user.

The disadvantage of TDMA is that it has larger overload than FDMA which means guard times are included in order to avoid collisions from neighbors. Further, TDMA requires strict time synchronization. The significant difference in propagation delays cause large idle times resulting in decrease in throughput.

(3) Code division multiple access CDMA This multiple access method is the widely deployed scheme based on spread spectrum. It allows users to transmit signalsall the time with all available bandwidth. Signals from users are distinguished by means of spreading code. This code is orthogonal to the spreading codes used by other users. There are two spreading techniques namely direct sequence spread spectrum(DS) and frequency hopping spread spectrum(FH).In the former case the spread code is multiplied directly(linear modulation) in order to spread the original bits while in latter case, the carrier frequency of a user is changed according to the pattern of the spread code.

Following are the main advantages of CDMA

(a)It has higher efficiency and throughput than FDMA and CDMA [3].

(b)CDMA is very effective against jamming, multipath interference and any other interference that appears deterministic [6].

(c)Switching from signal to signal for a transmitter or receiver can be easily done by changing the spread codes. Thus CDMA is flexible.

(d)In DS system, fine time resolution of spreading codes provides the possibility of coherently combining multipath arrivals using rake receiver. The rake receiver identifies three strongest multipath signals and combines them to one powerful signal. If the resolvable multipath components fade independently, it is possible to extract a time diversity gain present in the channel [5].

(e)Increased communication security.

Due to above mentioned reasons, CDMA and spread spectrum signaling appear to be promising multiple access method for shallow water acoustic networks.

4. MAC PROTOCOLS FOR UNDERWATER NETWORKS

A lot of media access control (MAC) protocols for underwater networks have been explored such as ALOHA, slotted ALOHA and CSMA. The most significant protocols among underwater networks seem to be CSMA/CA .

Carrier sense media access with collision avoidance (CSMA/CA)

The scarce resources of channel can be utilized much better if users sense the channel before transmitting a packet. This protocol uses two signaling packets called request to send (RTS) and clear to send (CTS). When a device intends to send a packet, it first senses whether another station is already transmitting (carrier sense). If no transmission is sensed, the device will issue RTS signal which contains the length of the message to be sent. If the recipient station senses that the medium is clear, it sends a clear to signal (CTS) which also contains the length of the message to be transmitted. As soon as the station wishing to transmit receives the CTS signal, it sends the actual data packet to its intended recipient. If the transmitting station does not receive the CTS signal in reply, it begins the RTS procedure. The controlling signal CTS should be heard by all the nodes within the range of the receiver node which in turn means that this protocol relies on the symmetry of the channel. It becomes essential to send CTS from a higher level to ensure that all the nodes within the range can hear it. This protocol can be used as a basis of media access protocol for underwater networks. It provides information for power control algorithms as nodes learn the minimum power level needed for reliable communication by trial and error.

5. NETWORK LAYER

Single hop transmission becomes inefficient if the range of the network becomes large. In that case multihop transmission is needed to relay the information from source to destination. It has also been proved that in underwater networks multihop transmission is more efficient in terms of power consumption [7].

The network layer is responsible for routing packets from source to destination when multihop is needed. There are two methods of routing namely virtual circuit routing and packet switched routing.

In virtual circuit routing, a communication path is decided before the data transmission takes place. Based on resource optimizing algorithm, the system decides which route to follow. For the whole transmission time session between two communicating entities is dedicated and exclusive, and released only when the session terminates.

In packet switching, the packets are sent towards the destination irrespective of each other. There is no pre determined path and each packet has to find its own route. Each node is involved in routing the packets in order to determine the next hop of the packet.

Underwater networks may have entirely fixed nodes (ocean bottom sensors) or completely mobile nodes (autonomous underwater vehicles).These instrumentstemporarily form a network without the aid on any pre existing infrastructure.These are called ad hoc networks [3].The main problem in ad hoc networks is obtaining most recent individual link state in the network, so as to decide best route for the packets. However, in case communication medium is highly variable such as shallow water acoustic channel, the number of routing updates can be very high. Some of the routing protocols that can be used in underwater acoustic networks are as follows [3]:

(1)DSDV (Destination sequenced distance vector) In this routing algorithm every node maintains a routing table of all available destinations, number of hops to reach the destination and the sequence number assigned by the destination node. The sequence number is used to distinguish stale routes from new routes and thus avoids the formation of loops. If a node receives new information, it uses the latest sequence number .If the sequence number is same as the one already in the table, the route with better metric will be used. The nodes periodically transmit their routing tables to their neighbors. If a node detects any route to the destination broken, then its hop number is set to infinity and its sequence number is increased. The disadvantage of DSDV is that its routing tables need to be updated regularly which wastes batter and small bandwidth even when the network is idle. further, if topology of network changes, a new sequence number needs to be added hence DSDV is not suitable for highly dynamic networks.

(2)DSR (Dynamic source routing) Instead on relying on the routing table at intermediate node, DSR makes use of source routing. The sender knows the complete hop by hop route to destination with these routes stored in a route cache. The route for each packet is included in its header. The node which receives the packet checks the header for the next hop and forwards packet. Route discovery works by flooding the network with route requests (RREQ) packets. On receiving the RREQ each node rebroadcasts it, unless it is the destination or it has route to the destination in its route cache. This protocol works well in static and low mobility environments.

(3)AODV (Ad hoc on demand distance vector This protocol establishes route to the destination only on demand and does not require nodes to maintain routing tables of destinations that are not actively used. Routes are discovered and maintained by route requests (RREQ), route replies (RREP) and route errors (RERR).

AODV uses destination sequence numbers on route updates which guarantees loop free path and gives the view of several fresh routes. The advantage of AODV is that it creates no extra traffic for communication along existing links by lowering the number of messages, thus conserving capacity of the network. Also , distance vector routing is simple and does not require much calculation. However time to establish connection and initial establishment of a route is much longer than the other approaches.

6. RELATED WORK

The interest in underwater networks and the consequent research has exponentially grown in recent years. Network Simulation and testing of underwater acoustic networks is relatively a new area, however there already exists some effort in this area. The authors of [2] compare the performances of DSDV, DSR and AODV with regards to following parameters

(1)Total throughputIt is the average rate of successful message delivery over a communication channel and is expressed as bits per second. Throughput is the very important metric in underwater acoustics because of very limited bandwidth.

Fig 1: Total throughput for DSDV, DSR and AODV routing protocols [2]

The above figure shows the total throughput plotted against the offered load. It can easily be concluded that AODV has the best performance and maximum throughput, whereas DSR routing protocol is the worst.

(1) Total packet delivery ratio It is the ratio between the number of packets sent out by the source and the number of packets correctly received by the corresponding destination. It is calculated by averaging time passed from the time a data packet is generated and when the packet is received by the destination.

Fig 2: Total delivered packets for DSDV, DSR and AODV routing protocols [2]

The above figure total delivered packets versus the offered load. The plot indicates that the DSR and DSDV have best performance when the offered load is below 0.1 pkt/sec, and AODV protocol is worse when the offered load is 0.1 pkt/sec. however when the offered load increases AODV protocol gives the best performance compared to DSR and DSDV.

(1)Average end to end delay It is the delay in the arrival of packet calculated by averaging the time that passes the time a data packet is generated to when it arrives at its final destination. Figure (3) shows the plot of average end to end delay versus the load offered. The minimum end to end delay is achieved by AODV protocol .DSR is the worst routing protocol having an average delay of 115 sec.In general minimum delay is achieved by all routing protocols when the offered load is small.

Fig 3: Total average end to end delay for DSR, DSDV and AODV protocols. [2]

In the above mentioned system it can be concluded that AODV routing protocolachieves maximum throughput and has best performance compared with DSDV and DSR routing protocols. It also gives minimum end to end delay when compared with other protocols. The best performance was achieved when offered load was decreased resulting in increase in packet delivery rate and decrease in average end to end delay.

7. CONCLUSION & FUTURE PROSPECTS

The past decades has significantly advanced underwater networking research. Static protocols such as TDMA or CDMA and dynamic protocols like CSMA/CD have been used in distributed and centralized topologies. DSR, AODV and other lightweight protocols have been investigated for underwater use. Efficient multihop and ad hoc packet routing protocols are promising research areas in future. Time is fast approaching for IEEE 802.11 style standardization for underwater network protocols which will lead to interoperable communication devices that can be used in a plug and play fashion similar to terrestrial wireless systems.

REFERENCES

[1] J.Catipovic, D.Brady, S.Etchemendy, “Development of. Underwater Acoustic Modems and Networks”oceanography ,vol 6,pp112-119,mar 1993

[2] Omar O. Aldawib”A Review of current Routing Protocols for AdHoc Underwater Acoustic Networks” pp 431-433 aug 2008

[3]E.M.Sozer,M.Stojanovic and J.G.Proakis,”Underwater Acoustic Networks,” IEEE J. OceanicEng.,vol.25,no. 1, Jan. 2000, pp. 72-83.

[4] K .Pahlavan and A.H Levesque,wireless information networks,New York,wiley,1995

[5] T. S. Rappaport, “Wireless Communications”, Englewood Cliffs,NJ: Prentice Hall, 1996.

[6] A. J. Viterbi, “CDMA, Principles of Spread Spectrum Communication”, Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley, May, 1997

[7] M. Stojanavic, “On the Relationship Between Capacity and Distance in an Underwater Acoustic Communication Channel”, ACM WUWNet ’06, pp. 41 – 47, Los Angeles, CA, USA, Sept., 2006

Categories
Free Essays

New forms of information and communication technology do not play a significant role in fostering social liberalisation and political change. Discuss with reference to a particular instance of social/political activism.

Introduction

With the invention of the internet, individuals around the world have changed in the way they think and how they do other related things like studying and the type of media they use in their day today lives. Media has moved from print to a variety of Information Computer Technology (ICT) enabled media like computers, which one can do reading online as long they have access to the internet. The internet has put forth a significant influence over our deliberation.

The development of ICT over the years has lead to many students depending solely on it to get information for academic purposes, especially those who are undertaking higher education. Some universities allow their students to use the internet do their assignments and research as there is a large number of credible sources that are found which can be very useful to students. Additionally, the internet is not just used for academic purpose. It can also be used use to socialize with friends and people around the world hence connection of people to share their diversity (Singer 2010, p.1). The internet on the other hand has negative effects to the people using it for example; children might get access to some sites that that would not be adequate for them such as pornographic material.

Current forms of ICT have caused social, political and cultural changes in society as it is being used by more and more people for a larger range of daily uses. People are more into socializing using the internet through sites such as face book, twitter and other social sites where they make friends from all over the world, which is very exciting. Politicians nowadays use the internet to fulfill their political interests and bring people together for their purpose for the society. More and more people use the internet, making it great platform that politicians have learnt to exploit in an attempt to target potential supporters for their campaigns. The internet gives freedom of choice and speech on political forums that take place online (Gladwell 2010, p.1)

Socializing of individuals through the internet enables people from diverse cultures to communicate and exchange details of their cultures. Students can learn more than they can get from books about the different cultures in the world and through their friends, they can visit different parts of the world to directly interact with the cultures. The information found on the net is massive, which gives individuals more information than they can actually finish reading. This gives people a sense of wanting to know more about other individuals whom they may meet online through websites for socializing and exchange of ideas from all subjects around the globe. Dictators and authoritarian leaders should fear the impact of internet activism. People can gang up and want to fight against the authoritarian leaders that rule their country (Butterworth 2010, p.2). Individuals may form groups that are opposed to authoritarian leadership, plan riots that may cause damage or deaths creating a bad image for the dictators. We can open say that internet activism can cause harm; hence it is not simply virtual politics.

The internet has made a lot of changes in today’s world. The internet has manipulated many aspects of society. This has brought about changes in people’s lives hence the implications that scholars and activists have made are actually right when they say that, the internet and new varieties of ICT will bring about a new-fangled epoch of activism and lead to societal, political and cultural modifications.

People who solely rely on the internet and ICT to do their studies or work on a regular basis give the implication that they cannot do without them. They are literally hooked up; if they go a day without ICT they feel that something is missing. These individuals portray a sense of relief or freedom to do a majority of things that they are used to and work with better. They feel they can trust ICT to do things for them without struggling too much to get the end product.

Carr’s analysis which implies that internet use is damaging our analytical capabilities and critical faculties is not true. Internet utilization may revolutionize our thinking and analysation of information provided but it does not damage us. It gives a chance for people to acquire more knowledge found on the internet, analyze it and come up with a variety of what one wants. This opens our minds and broadens our thinking giving individuals a majority of ideas that they can use in their work (Carr 2010, p.1). It enables individuals to multitask and do several things at once, it does not mean that they are distracted when they get pop ups, they can do other things on the side while they carry out the task that they were set out to do on the internet.

Personally, I have joined two online activist communities Ya-Ya network and Global Youth Connect. Ya-Ya network which is allied by individuals who are against racism and sexism. They work with issues that affect the eminence of young NYC people with the main focal point to counter-military conscripting and connection between militarism and other social justices. Global Youth Connect which aims to construct and sustain a society of youth exerting to fight for human rights and justice socially, for motivation and sanctioning for youths to fight for a social alteration that has significance. I get to check and participate on the cause at least twice a week to know the most current issues and updates.

The internet as a technology does actually support speech, civil liberties and democratization. This is because civil societies have industrialized a diversity of techniques online, to augment their operations. There is creation of sites on the internet that can be accessed by anyone from anywhere to speak out their minds and give ideas on different subjects on discussion (Naughton 2008, p.1). WikiLeaks subsistence attest to free speech permits of the internet if only the truth is posted. They are anonymous posts that are placed on the site so that information intended for the public is passed out. Most of this information is not known by the general public, this helps them be updated on all aspects of society in the world socially, politically and culturally.

I believe that the internet has the capacity to enable social/political change because the internet has got many non-profit organizations, every one of them conjecturing how best they can make use of the new medium. They encourage individuals to join political sides for different reasons. The people get to access the sites they are interested in so that they can know more but at the same time they learn and alter the way they think on the views given on social and political grounds.

The internet cannot be really said that it is owned, this is because it is a global system that allows dissimilar computer systems to converse using average set of regulations, without which they would not be able to chat. Sometimes when sites are lacerated and data leaked, I do feel monitored and wish I could live the site because my information has been compromised. The government can create awareness on the effect of unrestricted internet access especially to the underage children. They can impose restriction to the viewing of hate sites and pornographic sites in public places such as cafe’s and coffee shops as this will lead to the spreading of these kinds of activities especially among the teenager of today (Ratliff, 2008, p.1). Online users of the internet today are not concerned about the privacy of personal information as there are restrictions that have been implicated on the website owners not to share the user’s personal information.

The corporate nature of the sites that users visit is not of much concern to the user because it is not the aspect that the user is interested in. The corporate branch of the sites that a user visits only becomes an issue when they cause an impact on the site thus eliminating the importance of this site. A use does not put much thought into the ownership of the information that he or she gets from the internet. The user basically worries about the content of the information that he or she requires. The user visits sites that he or she knows to be of relevance to the matter at hand. I sometimes have concern about individuals who have ownership of information on the internet. It is not much though because I do not want to know more about them unless I am required to by circumstances of knowledge (Kelly 2008, p.2). I am not really apprehended by the amount of data held in respectable licensed formats because all I actually want and need from the internet is what I go for so that I can use it. Other issues that concern licenses do not actually come to mind at that time but either way does not impact me in any way.

The digital divide is a term used to describe the gap between individuals, businesses, and locations at different social and economic levels with consideration to both the opportunities to access the information that is available and the communication technologies. The use of the internet can also be utilized in a wide range of activities. This aspect incorporates the physical access to the technological advancements and the skills, knowledge, and resources required to successfully participate as a digital inhabitant. The internet plays a fundamental function in higher schooling by linking the digital divide (Zimmer 2000, p.1).

There should be a right to access the internet because it is mean to serve the whole global population. There should be no restrictions made on the use of internet if the user does so responsibly. The internet on the contrary has various rewards. This service provides the user a vast wealth of knowledge thus giving him or her desire to learn more on subjects that fascinate the individual. The internet provides an opportunity to the users to expand their horizons to the things that matter to them (Harkin, 2010, p.1). The internet is a more attractive method of teaching as it uses visual aids to help the user understand the context of the information being passed on to the user. This aspect enhances the desire to explore the articles given and the motivation to go beyond the information given to find other sources that are relevant to the question at hand. This can also entice the user to think outside the box and develop a new idea. The internet is not only about the education and communication; there are games that are available online. When a user indulges these games, they can help develop problem solving skills that can be used in other activities like studies.

Without access to the internet one can luck out of many opportunities. The internet is a major line of communication that is preferred by a large number of the working class people. Without the access to these channels then an individual may become unaware of the things that go on around him or her (Zimmer, 2000, p.3). A week without internet access may inconvenience an individual but a month or a year without access to the internet may breakdown operations within an organization. Some companies totally depend on the internet to exist. An example is the online freelance writing jobs that are a source of employment to a great number of individuals. If they do not have this service then they would lack a means to which they earn a living. Internet addiction can become a real problem if it is abused by the user. When a user becomes completely dependent on the internet then he or she finds it difficult to work without it and thus it becomes an inconvenience to them. Internet use should be only of the required amount in order to avoid addiction. One can also combine other forms of communication or visit a library.

Universities should not require students to complete research without using the internet. The internet is a major contributor to the provision of information as almost every topic that has been documented has been duplicated and posted into the internet. This is why it is labeled the information super-highway. It is much easier to use and time saving compared to other spring of information. A university library may have an extensive assortment of books on all subjects but they are not always available. This creates uncertainty on whether or not one will be able to fulfill the desired quest for information. A library may not have a particular book or may even have loaned it to another student (Sullivan 2008, p.2).

The internet thus is more accessible by the use or a computer or internet enabled devices at the click of a button. This is considerably swifter compared to the preceding routine of going to the library. This can be done from the comfort of an individual’s home or place of work rather than having to go through the hustle of visiting a library to access a certain article or book.

Conclusion

The internet has caused a stir in the world and it is changing day by day, making advancements that continue to make people more and more dependent on it. It is being upgraded and creating tools that are addictive and more efficient for the work one is doing online. Some social sites have enabled practice of civil liberties and democratization by the users at the same time making sure there anonymity is respected. Social sites have aided people in socialization on their livelihoods leading to cultures being shared across the globe. Students have benefited immensely in doing their researches and studies by accessing the internet, information is just a click away.

References

Butterworth, T., (2010) Beware the Internet as Liberation Theology, Trevor Butterworth Medialand Web. 4 May 2011.

Carr, N., (2008), Is Google Making Us Stupid?, Atlantic Monthly. Web. 4 May 2011.

Gladwell, M., (2010), Small Change: Why The Revolution Will Not Be Tweeted, The New Yorker. Web. 4 May 2011.

Harkin, J., (2010), Cyber-Con London Review of Books. Web. 3 May 2011.

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Why managing human resources and the communication process is important during an acquisition or merger?

CHAPTER 1 : INTRODUCTION

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) have been a popular strategy for organizations to consolidate and grow for more than a century. However, research in this field indicates that M&A are more likely to fail than succeed, with failure rates estimated to be as high as 75%. People?related issues have been identified as important causes for the high failure rate, but these issues are largely neglected until after the deal is closed. One explanation for this neglect is the low involvement of human resource (HR) professionals and the HR function during the M&A process. The strategic HR management literature suggests that a larger role for HR professionals in the M&A process would enable organizations to identify potential problems early and devise appropriate solutions. However, empirical research from an HR perspective has been scarce in this area.

Mergers and acquisitions (M&A) have been a key strategy for companies1 to consolidate and grow (Ellis & Lamont, 2004). The recorded history of M&A activity beginning in the late 1890s indicates a wave pattern with its characteristic crests and troughs. In recent times, resurgence in M&A activity suggests the emergence of a fresh wave of M&A activity after a brief lull during the initial years of this century. The number of M&A deals and their values exceed several thousands and several trillions of dollars, respectively. Chart 1.01 shows the volume and value of deals involving United States?based companies over a 30?year period. Table 1.01 depicts the value of global M&A activity between 2004 and 2006. Comparative trends indicate that the proportion of M&A deals occurring outside theU.K.is increasing. For example, of the global total of $1.9 trillion worth of M&A deals, about 40% of them involvedUKbased companies; this proportion reduced to about 30% in 2006.

Several reasons have been put forward to explain the motivation for companies to undertake M&A. In general, companies merge or acquire in order to: increase size, increase market power, eliminate competitors, enter new markets, improve efficiencies through synergies, diversify risk, realize financial gains, acquire talent and technology, and/or fulfill the personal motives of senior managers (Ghauri & Buckley, 2003; Gaughan, 2005; Sherman & Hart, 2006). M&A are preferred when it is necessary to take swift action, such as when an organization needs to increase market share quickly and cannot do so through the more time?consuming route of organic growth. M&A also become attractive when capital investments, such as in research and development (R&D), are too large for a single organization to bear. In recent years, changes in the global environment have also contributed to an increase in M&A activity. Liberalization and deregulation policies at the national, regional and global levels, along with technological innovations, have intensified competition and have forced companies to consolidate, including crossing borders to do so (Ferguson, 2003; UNCTAD, 2000; Schuler & Jackson, 2001; and Lynch & Lind, 2002). The increasing popularity of M&A thus reflects the dynamic interaction between important changes in the global environment and motivating factors at the organizational level.

1.1. Background of the Problem

Every year many mergers and acquisition takes place all over the world. Some of them take place by mutual consent while others take place due to unfriendly situation. It has been found that few important issues have not been given due attention in mergers and one such issue is the affect on employees after the merger. Due to mergers, many employees lose their jobs, few gets transfers and their job descriptions changes. Due to mergers almost all employees are affected one way or other. It is expected of employee that they must carry on their work without any break during and after the merger. They should not be affected by merger and they should continue to serve the company. The employees are expected that they should not worry about rumors and threats to their job. The most affected people during merger are the employees as after every merger many of people lose their job.

Apart from the top management, all employees at all levels are affected by merger but few people thought about this issue. The employee rights are very important and they should be given due attention during merger.

It is as if the question of how employees are affected in these sorts of transactions was unimportant or incidental to the fiduciary benefit of shareholders of both parties, and indeed this is allegedly the primary justification for a merger or an acquisition, insufficient attention has been paid to the responsibilities of shareholders in these activities.

Whenever a merger or acquisition takes place, there is much pressure on the management teams to set new levels of expectations from the employees, in order for the (M&A) to result in the success level it initially expected from the (M&A). The thoughts and feelings of the employees are not taken into account, many managers will not even think about how the (M&A) will affect the individual employees.

Some managers will rush into the (M&A) and expect the results of success to start immediately, In many companies and businesses whether they are large or small has a human resource whether it is 1 employee or more than 1,000 employees someone, somewhere has to carry out tasks that lead to the final distribution of the supplies. There are employees with anything from 1year to 35 years and more length of services, there are also employees who have been loyal and given 100% effort to ensure the success of the company or business. More attention should be given to human resource and they are vital for any organization during the merger or acquisitions.

1.2 The Dissertation Question

Why managing human resources and the communication process is important during an acquisition. (iporesources.org)

The reason managing human resources is important in any acquisition or merger, is from the outset of the merger or acquisition the directors and managers should make every efforts to manage all the skills and attributes each employee has to offer the company. When leaders are put in charge of the different departments, the employees should be made to feel valued, and needed, not frightened or feel their future is at risk due to the merger or acquisition. It would be wise for Managers to remember that in some cases there has been a massive amount of investment has been placed in training employees in order for them to achieve the skills and qualities that the company needed to be successful, it has been known for employees to be made feel that they have been doing the job wrong for years, and causes them to lose confidence, and eventually they will leave the company, putting the employees whole personal life at risk, bearing in mind, some employees have shown loyalty and commitment to the company, by their long term service to the company.

Managing Human resources is the key to success for any merger or acquisition, the human side of any company or business is the most valuable asset. To meet any merger or acquisition goals, the human side tends to hold all the aces, as they have the knowledge, skills, talent, aptitude, attitude and creative abilities, which should to maximized to meet the goals set (Adler 2006 295).

The management frame work can be strategically set by the HR department by injecting the “Five Ps” Processes, Practices, Programs, Policies, Philosophy. The Human side of mergers and acquisitions needs to be approached in a manner that will achieve employees working effectively and efficiently which will result in better performances from employees (Barney 2008 71). The aim for the Human resource department is to develop open door policies, flexible management and more approachable and caring management style in order for the employees of both companies to be motivated and energized to support and deliver the company missions.

In recent times Mergers and acquisitions have become a common phenomenon. The employee holds key roles in the merger and they are ghighly affected by the merger and acquisition processes. Human resource negligence has been known as one of the main reasons of its failure. Human Resource management is a vital element in the strategy development of a merger or acquisition such as.

Formulating the strategy and developing activities for a merger or acquisition.
Identifying and developing new competencies
Managing the soft due diligence activity
Advising top management on the merged company’s new organizational structure
Overseeing the communications
Managing the learning processes
Re-casting the HR department itself
Identifying and embracing new roles for the HR leader
Providing input into managing the process of change. (Bastien 2007 17)

Thus Success of Merger & Acquisition entirely depends on the people who drive the Business, their ability to Execute, Creativity, and Innovation. Thus the role of addressing any communication issues, employees concerns, compensation policies, skill sets, downsizing issues and company goals lays a platform for the firm base in Human Resource Management to attain desired goals. Involvement of HR Professionals in Mergers and Acquisitions discussions becomes utmost important as it has an impact on key people issues. This will help them to achieve a much better outcome and increase the chance that the overall deal is a total success (Bernard 2001 50).

CHAPTER 2 : LITERATURE REVIEW

2.1 Performance of M&A

Despite the strategic rationales, the history, and the sheer volume of M&A undertaken, the performance of M&A has not been impressive. The exact rates of success of M&A are contested in the literature, but numerous studies argue that only about 25% to 30% of M&A actually meet their originally stated objectives (see for example, Marks & Mirvis, 1998; Ellis & Lamont, 2004; Pablo & Javidan, 2004; Schweiger, 2002; and Thach & Nyman, 2001). On the other hand, some studies contend that M&A do have positive consequences for acquiring firms (Jensen, 1988; Hitt, Harrison, & Ireland, 2001; and Bruner 2005). In a critique of the conventional wisdom that M&A destroy value, Bruner (2005), based on his analyses of more than 130 studies, concludes that M&A does in fact pay for shareholders of both the buyer and seller firms. Nevertheless, despite the dissenting minority, the general inference one draws from the literature on the performance of M&A is that they do not add much value to the acquiring firm and are probably more detrimental to shareholder wealth in the longer term (Cooper & Gregory, 2000; and Pablo & Javidan, 2004).

Regardless of the rates of success or failure, the impact and implications of poor performance of M&A can be seen at multiple levels: individual, organizational, and societal. 1) At the individual level, negative consequences of M&A include such things as: damage to social networks and social support; increased anxiety and stress due to uncertainty, loss of control, loss of identity, personal shame, and the notion of change itself; loss of employment, loss of trust, negative impact on benefits, possible adverse changes to the employment contract, and possible transfer to a less favorable location (Cartwright & Cooper, 1990). 2) At the organizational level, the implications include: decrease in production and productivity; loss or waste of valuable resources; problems with organizational communication; breakdown of collaborative working relationships; loss of tacit knowledge; damage to organizational culture; damage to organizational image and brand equity; loss of key talent; loss of trust in the leadership of the organization; possible increase in conflicts and grievances; loss of market share and consumers; and may also result in the demise of the organization from the market (Drucker, 1981; Cartwright & Cooper, 1990; Chaudhuri & Tabrizi, 1999; and Krug & Aguilera, 2005). 3) At the societal level, the implications include: reduced consumer choice because of the reduction in competition; increase in dead?weight loss2; damage to the social fabric, especially in ‘company towns’; and both direct and indirect loss to the local economy (UNCTAD, 2000; and Ghauri & Buckley, 2003).

2.2 Current Explanations for M&A Performance

The major reasons identified for the poor performance of M&A include: paying too much, an inability to sustain financial performance, poor strategic fit between the two organizations, unclear understanding of objectives/synergies, loss of productivity, incompatible cultures, a clash of management styles/egos, loss of key talent, inadequate/improper due?diligence, ineffective integration, and people?related issues such as inadequate/improper communication, poor leadership, unclear roles, poor decision making, and cultural clashes (Thach & Nyman, 2001, Beckier, Bogardus, & Oldham, 2001; Cooper & Finkelstein, 2004; Prichett, Robinson, & Clarkson, 1997; Schmidt, 2002; Pablo & Javidan, 2004; and Carey & Ogden, 2004). These reasons indicate that during M&A, issues of conception and execution are important. For example, without a sound strategy, and if the merging companies are culturally mismatched, carrying out integration activities would be futile. Similarly, even when all the economic, financial, and strategic aspects are in place, improper handling of the integration process is likely to cause the M&A to fail. M&A are inherently complex processes that involve the combination of two organizations. They need to factor in several issues such as: corporate strategy, financing of the merger, nature of accounting treatment, expected synergies, integration of cultures, integration of technological and operational issues, retention of talent, allaying fears of employees, integration of human resource (HR) systems, ensuring regulatory compliance, and managing anti?trust and other legal issues. Consequently, assigning primacy to any one issue, functional area, or discipline to explain the success or failure of M&A becomes problematic. However, in broad terms, the high failure rates are attributed to problems related to financial, managerial, strategic, and HR or people aspects of M&A. Of the many reasons identified for the poor performance of M&A, it is clear that a significant number of them involve people?related issues. It is estimated that about one?third to one?half of all M&A fail because of “employee problems” (Davy, Kinicki, Kilroy, & Scheck, 1988). This should, perhaps, not be surprising because a merger or acquisition is essentially a type of organization change, albeit a radical one, and, therefore, inherently involves people?related issues. However, the literature indicates that in a typical M&A people issues are largely overlooked until after the deal is done and publicized, with greater priority being accorded to legal, financial, economic, marketing, and production aspects .

2.3 Focus on People Related Issues in M&A

M&A research has traditionally been undertaken from an economic, financial, or general management perspective (Cooper and Gregory, 2000). The body of knowledge generated thus far is substantial, but a huge gap still exists in our understanding of how M&A actually work and what can be done to improve their success rates. The low rates of M&A success and the consequent negative ramifications suggest that, perhaps, one needs to approach the practice and study of M&A differently. The discussion in the previous paragraphs indicates that several of the problem areas identified by practitioners and researchers for poor M&A performance fall under the domain of the HR function3 in organizations. Although it is intuitively appealing that people issues are important in M&A, yet these issues are regularly neglected. To remedy this situation, several academicians and practitioners have argued in favor of according importance to people issues during M&A, and, particularly, involving the HR function of the two companies early on in the M&A process (Ulrich, Cody, LaFasto, & Rucci, 1989; Schuler & Jackson, 2001; UNCTAD, 2000; Mirvis, & Marks, 1992; Schmidt, 2002; Horwitz, Anderssen, Bezuidenhout, Cohen, Kirten, Mosoeunyane, Smith, Thole, & van Heerden, 2002; and Bramson, 2000). They argue that low involvement of HR professionals especially in the initial stages of M&A, i.e., in the pre?deal and due?diligence stages, lead to people?related issues not being identified properly and/or even being ignored (Schmidt, 2002). When viewed from a broader perspective, the literature on strategic HR management calls for a larger role for the HR function in more fundamental aspects of the organization, i.e.,, from the formulation of corporate goals itself. Involvement of HR at the upper levels of management, it is argued, can lead to the development of more appropriate strategies, including M&A, to realize these goals (see, for example, Brockbank, 1999; and Ulrich and Brockbank, 2005). Thus, early involvement and a larger role for HR are believed to produce better M&A outcomes.

However, very few studies exist that specifically address the association between involvement of HR and M&A outcomes. For example, one study examined how HR professionals added value and helped accomplish the merger between Baxter?Travenol Laboratories and American Hospital Supply Corporation in 1985 (Ulrich et al., 1989). The authors argue that HR professionals played a “strategic business partner” role in this case; i.e., they helped make and implement business decisions. In this case, senior HR executives from both companies were involved in three major integration initiatives: 1) defining the operating philosophy for the newly merged organization; 2) designing an appropriate organization structure; and 3) executing people?related aspects of the merger such as employee communications, executive and corporate staff selection, employee severance and career continuation assistance. These initiatives were undertaken within a four month period between the date of the merger agreement and the date of the merger closing. In a second study involving a survey of 440 senior HR professionals, Schmidt (2002) argues that HR involvement during integration planning and implementation is more typical of HR’s traditional roles as technical specialists, since during these stages the concern is more toward aligning HR programs and addressing staffing issues. Instead, he argues for HR involvement from the earlier more strategic stages (i.e., pre?deal and due?diligence) when the viability and risks of M&A are assessed. He finds that the HR involvement gap at every stage of an M&A was larger for unsuccessful companies. His other findings include: 1) that HR is significantly less involved in the earlier stages than in the later stages (i.e., integration planning and implementation) of M&A; 2) HR involvement in the earlier stages can positively influence decisions that determine success or failure, e.g., in the assessment of the cultural and management compatibility; and 3) that companies with a successful M&A track?record are more likely to have HR professionals with competencies that allow them to be meaningfully involved across the full range of M&A activities.

In a third study, Kuhlmann and Dowling (2005) analyzed the 1998 merger between Daimler and Chrysler and concluded that the involvement of the HR function starting from the pre?acquisition analysis of candidates facilitates the entire merger process. Eventually, however, it became apparent that both companies had underestimated their management and cultural differences and Chrysler was sold to a private a private equity firm in 2007 (Economist, 2007b). A fourth study examined the effects of organizational culture and HR management (HRM) effectiveness on the financial performance of a sample of Singapore?based companies involved in M&A between 1984?1998. In this study Chew and Sharma (2005) used Huselid, Jackson and Schuler’s (1997) notion of differentiation between strategic HRM effectiveness and technical HRM effectives. The latter involves more conventional HR functions and is more common among companies, while the former involves more complex but better integrated systems that are unique and are more likely to provide competitive advantage to a company. Their findings were similar to Huselid et al. (1997) that strategic HRM effectiveness had a positive correlation with firm performance, while technical HRM effectiveness showed no such correlation. Specifically, Chew and Sharma’s (2005) study found a significant positive correlation between an acquiring firm’s emphasis on strategic HRM effectiveness and its financial performance; the correlation between technical HRM effectiveness and financial performance was not significant.

2.4 Establishing Causality Between HR Involvement and M&A Outcomes

The studies described above seek to show that HR involvement has a positive impact on M&A outcomes. However, the extent to which causality can be established between HR involvement and M&A outcomes is still unclear. The survey conducted by Schmidt (2002) presents self?reported scores of HR professionals. There is no mention in the methodology about how the problem of “common?source” was addressed. The study by Ulrich et al. (1989) describes the activities performed by HR professionals during the integration and implementation stages of M&A and relates them to the success of the M&A. However, the discussion on the causal relationship is rather weak. Chew and Sharma’s (2005) study shows a positive correlation between strategic HRM effectiveness and a set of financial ratios (i.e., internal liquidity, efficiency, profitability, and degree of leverage), but causality is much harder to establish because of confounding factors. The authors acknowledge that external factors such as the oil crisis of the 1970s and the economic crises of 1985 and 1997 in South?East Asia could also have impacted financial performance of the companies in their sample. Kuhlmann and Dowling (2005) state that HR issues are a common but usually incomplete explanation for M&A outcomes; they elaborate (pg. 362):

2.5 Need for a Different Kind of Research

The difficulty in establishing causality in a complex phenomenon such as M&A creates a huge need to examine this phenomenon differently. A “process perspective” is increasingly seen as appropriate for this purpose because of the increasing recognition that execution and implementation issues also need to be given importance along with the economic and strategic rationales for M&A (Javidan, Pablo, Singh, Hitt, & Jemison, 2004). The process perspective “combines elements of the strategic and organizational behavioral perspectives that frame [M&A] as a series of linked phases each of which has an impact on the subsequent phases and on the final outcome of the M&A. This perspective posits that to fully understand [M&A] value creation, one must study the actions that lead up to the [M&A] decision along with the integration and management activities that follow the decision” (Greenberg, Lane, & Bahde, 2005, pg. 56). Therefore, there is a need to understand how M&A actually take place in organizations and what managerial mechanisms facilitate M&A (Javidan et al., 2004). Further, this process perspective can be employed to examine HR processes involved during M&A and the role of the HR function during all the various stages of M&A. Three studies, all based in Europe and using the case?study research design, have examined the HR roles and processes during M&A. Two of them analyzed HR’s roles using Ulrich’s (1997) conceptual model of four HR roles, viz. Strategic Partner (management of strategic HR issues), Administrative Expert (management of the firm’s infrastructure), Employee Champion (management of employee contribution), and Change Agent (management of transformation and change). The first one, a case study of the merger of two financial firms (Bjorkman & Soderberg, 2006), found that HR did not have a role as a strategic partner, but played the remaining three roles at various stages of the merger, especially during the integration stage. The second one, a three?case case?study (Antila, 2006), found that presence of HR managers in the pre?combination was mixed, but when they were involved at this stage they played a strategic role. The HR manager of one of the three companies in the study was involved in identifying reasons for acquisition and selecting potential target companies. Both these studies, however, do not explore the relationship between the roles played by HR and M&A outcomes. A third study examined the M&A process and the roles played by HR at each stage in the 1998 merger of Daimler and Chrysler (Kuhlmann & Dowling, 2005). The authors conclude that HR played a minor part in the planning and implementation of the merger because it was assumed that people issues would not create any special problems. Using thick description of the M&A processes at the organization?level and the HR involvement during these processes, the authors argue convincingly that early involvement of HR professionals would have helped bring to fore the obstacles presented by the cultural differences between the American and German national cultures. The lack of HR involvement, especially in the early stages, hampered the identification of potential problems and creation of suitable strategies to deal with them. The outcome of this merger was disastrous with Daimler offloading about 80% of Chrysler for $7.4 billion in 2007, against a purchase price of $36 billion in 1998 (Economist, 2007b). The three studies described above are important for at least three reasons. Firstly, they are among the very few studies that have examined HR involvement in M&A from a process perspective. Secondly, they indicate that the preferred method to study processes is to use a case?study research design. Finally, that the extent of HR involvement in M&A, the roles they play, and the processes they follow are diverse and are greatly influenced by the context of the M&A. These studies have laid the foundation for greater examination of the problem at hand, i.e., understanding the causal relationship between HR involvement and M&A outcomes.

2.6 Development of a Theoretical Framework

Organizational theorists, such as Burns and Stalker (1961), Lawrence and Lorsch (1967), Thompson (1967), and Woodward (1965), have argued about the importance of the interaction between contextual factors, namely the external environment, and the management structures or styles of organizations. The conceptual model for this research, guided by contingency theory, posits that certain contextual factors, both internal and external to the organization, influence HR involvement in the M&A process, which in turn impacts M&A outcomes. The model further posits that the same contextual factors also affect HR involvement in the formulation of corporate goals and strategy. The strategic HR management (HRM) literature indicates that HR involvement in the upper levels of management would allow it to contribute in the formulation of corporate goals, and also in developing appropriate strategies to accomplish these goals. Further, according to this model, the contextual factors can directly influence HR involvement in M&A or through HR involvement in the formulation of corporate goals and strategy. That is, HR involvement in M&A can be independent of HR involvement in corporate goals and strategy. However, if HR is involved in the latter, then it will be involved in the former too.

2.7 HR Involvement in the Formulation of Corporate Goals and Strategy

The HR function in an organization broadly refers to the HR professionals, the organization of the HR department, and the HR policies, practices, and systems of an organization. The function manages all the dedicated activity that an organization employs to affect behaviors of all the people who work for it (Jackson & Schuler, 2003). The literature on HR management indicates that the HR function has been making a transition from playing purely administrative or operational roles to becoming more strategic in its outlook (Novicevic & Harvey, 2001). The HR function plays different roles in an organization, ranging from operational and transactional roles to more strategic ones, depending on how they are set up. Ulrich & Brockbank (2005), updating Ulrich (1997), delineate five roles for HR professionals and for the HR function in general: (a) employee advocacy – making sure the employee?employer relationship creates reciprocal value; (b) human capital development – building capabilities in the future workforce; (c) functional expertise – designing and delivering HR practices that ensure individual ability and create organization capability; (d) strategic partnership – bringing business, change, consulting, and learning know?how to line?managers and helping them reach their goals; and (e) HR leadership – embodying the previous four roles and collaborating with other functions, ensuring corporate governance, and monitoring the HR community.

The last two roles in Ulrich and Brockbank’s (2005) model envision HR as a partner at the upper echelons of an organization, i.e., the level at which the vision, mission, corporate goals, and corporate strategy are formulated. These set the tone for how an organization would be governed and managed. The vision and mission statements guide the formulation of corporate goals, and corporate strategy is the organization?level action plan designed to achieve these goals (Ireland, Hoskisson, & Hitt, 2006; and Grant, 2005). Corporate strategy is then realized through a set of strategic decisions that the organization makes (Fitzroy & Hulbert, 2005). For example, one goal for an organization may be to grow larger in size, which can be achieved through several strategies such as growing organically (i.e., internal growth) or through M&A. In the area of M&A, Haspeslagh & Jemison (1991) define two broad objectives for organizations: (a) to achieve specific strategic goals; and (b) to transfer capabilities, i.e., combination benefits or synergy, resource sharing, and the transfer of functional and general management skills. The specific strategic goals include: (1) domain strengthening – deepening presence within the industry through the acquisition of a competitor, such as Bank of America’s acquisition of MBNA in 2006; (2) domain extending – broadening presence in terms of products, markets, or capabilities, such as P&G’s acquisition of Gillette in 2005; and (3) domain exploring – entering new (even unrelated) markets or adopting new technologies, such as eBay’s acquisition of Skype in 2006.

The HR literature indicates that the HR function can be a valuable business partner in helping formulate corporate goals and strategies; specifically, during the stages of planning, decision?making, and assessing appropriate strategies. For example,

1)In planning, HR can participate in the environmental scanning process, anticipate changes, and ensure the availability of requisite organizational capabilities.

2)In decision making, HR can provide competitive intelligence from employment activities or research cost implications of potential strategies especially in people?related matters.

3)In assessing appropriate strategies, HR professionals can bring in a unique perspective that considers important people?related issues and the ramifications of neglecting or ignoring them.

This is particularly relevant during M&A because they inherently involve the integration of people from different organizational cultures. In the area of M&A, Napier (1989) argues that the early involvement of the HR function can, for example, help retain valuable employees and top managers, who may otherwise leave because they sense a loss of control or want to avoid uncertainty about their role and value in the merged organization.

More generally, research evidence indicates that better organizational outcomes result when HR is more closely involved in both operational as well as strategic aspects of the organization. Huselid (1995) found that better HR practices were negatively related with turnover and positively related with corporate financial (both accounting and market) performance measures. That is, there is a reduction in turnover and an improvement in financial performance with better HR practices. Huselid and Becker (1995, cited in Becker, Huselid, Pickus & Spratt, 1997), in a study of 740 firms, found that firms with a greater intensity of HR practices, such as, rigorous recruitment and selection procedures, performance econtingent incentive compensation systems, and training activities linked to business needs, had a greater market value per employee. Specifically, they found that a one standard deviation improvement in a firm’s HR practices increased market value by $15,000?$60,000 per employee. In another study, Huselid et al. (1997) found that strategic HRM effectiveness has a significant positive correlation with firm performance. They argue that a strategic role for HR would provide better competitive advantage for an organization because strategic HRM systems are bigger, more complex, and unique, and thus more difficult to be replicated by competitors.

On the other hand, the more operational and technical aspects of HR are more common knowledge and easily accessible. Kirn, Rucci, Huselid, & Becker (1999) describe the positive outcomes resulting from the strategic role played by HR at Sears. The HR function was not only closely involved in formulating and communicating the corporate vision, mission, and goals, but also in competently delivering on HR’s operational issues. Shafer, Dyer, Kilty, Amos, & Ericksen (2001) examined the strategic role of HR in the turnaround of Albert Einstein Healthcare Network from a stable and complacent organization to one that was more agile and change?ready. Wright, McMahan, McCormick, & Sherman (1998), based on a survey of 86 petrochemical refineries in the United States, report that higher involvement of HR in organizational strategy was strongly related to the perception of HR effectiveness, and that the relationship was strongest when the refineries pursued a product innovation strategy and viewed skilled employees as their core competence. Using the resource?based view of the firm, Barney & Wright (1998) demonstrated how the HR functions in diverse organizations such as Continental Airlines, DuPont, FedEx, GE, MetLife, Nordstrom, and Southwest Airlines have created value for their respective organizations. Further, in a review of literature, Tracey & Nathan (2002) found that HR policies, practices, and systems are related to a variety of financial and operational success indicators; and that there is “compelling evidence that the proper alignment between HR systems and business strategy will enhance a firm’s performance.” Overall, the literature on strategic HR management indicates that greater HR involvement and a larger role for the HR function in the formulation of corporate goals can lead to the development of more appropriate strategies to realize those goals.

2.8 HR Involvement in the M&A Process

Corporate strategy influences the specific processes that are employed by organizations. With regard to M&A, researchers and practitioners have developed various models and frameworks to describe and understand the stages and process involved, such as: a) GE’s Pathfinder model (described in DiGeorgio, 2002; and Ashkenas, DeMonaco, & Francis, 1998)

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How does Nonverbal communication have a great influence over our social environment and the whole communication process?

Introduction

Communication is a process in which people verbally or non-verbally share information and ideas. Nonverbal communication can be best defined as a silent form of communicating with a person or party without using any form of speech to grab an audience attention or to exploit a message. Nonverbal communication is often used to make an expression of a thought or thoughts and make your message more appealing and interesting to whom you are speaking. Nonverbal communication has a great influence over our social environment and the whole communication process. There are many types and functions of nonverbal communication. Nonverbal communication regulates relationships and can support or even replace verbal communications in many situations. Different genders and cultures use nonverbal communication differently and these differences can impact the nature of interpersonal communication. Nonverbal communication can become a barrier or tear down barriers to effective communication.

I conducted my own observation of nonverbal communication in a restaurant which is done on a daily basis. Nonverbal rules may differ according to the situation, and each situation determines its set of rules. The restaurant is located in Waynesboro, Ms, where I live. The patrons of the restaurant consisted of all types of cultures and class of families. The distinctive patterns of the customers were very noticeable. Different types of patrons had very different yet distinct sets of nonverbal communication behaviors. I observed three different groups, the older adults, the younger adults, and the children. I observed them differently to determine the differences that age and gender play a role in nonverbal behavior rules. Many different types of nonverbal communication were observed such as body language, hand movement, facial expressions, and eye contact.

There are four important functions of nonverbal communication. These functions can complement, regulate, substitute for, or accent a verbal message. In addition to the functions, there are many types of nonverbal communication. Those different types include paralanguage, body movement, facial expressions, eye messages, attractiveness, clothing, body adornment, space and distance, touch, time, smell and manner. There are cultural and co-cultural variations in each case of what are acceptable and unacceptable practice (Hybels & Weaver, 2007).

In describing the functions with complementing, one might use body language in an effort to support or add credibility to your words, and if that body language is seen as genuine then the overall message is strengthened (Hybels & Weaver, 2007). If the body language is perceived as fake or misleading, however, then it moves into the category of conflicting. In regulating, the body language serves the function of pacing and regulating communication (Hybels & Weaver, 2007). For instance, in a group of people, there are a number of non-verbal cues indicating when one person is finished speaking and it is another person’s turn. The function of substituting uses body language to replace verbal communication (Hybels & Weaver, 2007). For example, if you are caught in a conversation with someone who just keeps talking and talking, it is difficult to come out and tell that person you are tired of the conversation. Instead, you might substitute body language such as glancing away or stepping away. The last function of accenting is a type of body language that emphasizes, accentuates, softens, or otherwise enhances your verbal communication (Hybels & Weaver, 2007). You might point your finger to direct attention to the subject of your words, or you might reach out and touch the hand of a child whom you are correcting or disciplining.

Paralanguage refers to the non-verbal elements of communication used to modify meaning and convey emotion. Paralanguage may be expressed consciously or unconsciously, and it includes the pitch, volume, rate, and the quality. Sometimes the definition is restricted to vocally produced sounds. The study of paralanguage is known as paralinguistic cues. Body movements or kinesics are referred to all forms of body movements are important part of non-verbal communication behavior. The transport of body movement has many specific meanings and the interpretations that may be a bound of culture. As many movements are carried out at an unawareness level, the body movements carry a risk of being misinterpreted in a different culture communications situation. Some related words for body movement may be emblems are substitute for words and phrases, illustrators accompany or reinforce verbal messages, display of feelings show emotion, regulators controls the flow and pace of communication, and adaptors release physical or emotional tension (Hybels & Weaver, 2007).

Facial expressions can show happiness, sadness, fear, and anger that are easily identifiable across cultures. In addition, facial expressions play an important role in closeness. Eye messages are messages given only with the eyes. In the American culture, eye contact is a sign of honesty, credibility, warmth, and involvement. Other cultures require eye contact. Conversations without eye contact represent disinterest, inattention, rudeness, shyness, or deception. Eye messages show connection to others, attentiveness, involvement, immediacy but prolonged stares show negative and intimidating expressions. Eye messages have a delightful and wondrous aspect in the rolling of the eyes because it is known for flirting (Hybels & Weaver, 2007).

The perception of nonverbal communication started during the first year of life, when we learned how to communicate without words as infants. Infants learned very early the difference between a scowl and a smile and they soon learn how to convey their own feelings through non-verbal communication. The way nonverbal cues are perceived and interpreted in relationships can make all the difference between a positive and a negative impression. Paralinguistic enforces the old adage; it is not what you say but how you say it. No matter the rate of speed, the faster the communicator speaks, the more competent they may appear. The speakers with a high and varied pitch come across as more competent; a constant low pitch voice is associated with strength and maturity, while a constant high pitch voice signals tenseness and nervousness. Those who speak loudly are generally seen as aggressive and domineering, and speakers with soft voices are perceived as timid and polite. How individuals perceive nonverbal communication is often based on how they see themselves. If an individual takes everything personally, they may take offense to some nonverbal cues that are being used, whether they are intentional or unintentional. To avoid miscommunication, it is essential that speakers become more aware of the nonverbal cues that are used (Hybels & Weaver, 2007).

In the workplace, effective communication can be used to improve performance and to produce desired results. There are many non-verbal cues that are used everyday in the workplace, most of which are stronger that spoken language. Professionally speaking, a handshake can make a strong first impression, whether it is positive or negative. Men tend to have better handshaking skills and etiquette than women do; handshakes should be inviting, strong but not overpowering. Workplace touching is often discouraged due to sending out mixed messages, but handshakes are usually accepted and encouraged in most cases. Eye contact is yet another important non-verbal cue that can be used both positively and negatively in the workplace. In the United States, eye contact conveys honestly and sincerity; making eye contact is often an invitation to open communication, and signifies the need for feedback. In contrast, avoiding eye contact signals distrust, suspicion, or lack of interest; similarly, prolonged eye contact or a stare signifies aggression or flirting (Henman, 2009). In the workplace, dressing professionally is something most employers require, it shows confidence in oneself.Dressing professionally includes clothes that are worn, personal hygiene and not overpowering cologne and perfume. American businesses value being on time and being conscientious of this is crucial in business. Paying attention to all these non-verbal types of communication can prove successful in almost every business.

Nonverbal communication has the ability to strengthen and develop existing relationships or it can destroy them. A relationship can be regulated by nonverbal communication because it can support or replace verbal communication. Some of the contributing factors are the sending and receiving ability and accuracy, perception of appropriate social roles, and cognitive desire for interpersonal involvement. If the communicators are unaware of the types of messages they are sending and how the receiver is interpreting the messages difficulties can arise from nonverbal communication. If the perception of the receiver is not of the social norms for the particular situation could cause problems also. All the people involved must want the interaction to occur for reciprocal communication to be successful. Facial expressions can compel one to communicate interaction with another. Facial expressions can cause negative feelings if the other is evoked by them. Introduction and management rely on nonverbal communication in interpersonal relationships. Through research, interpersonal relationships have been successful through nonverbal clues (Dunn, 1999).

Nonverbal communication has an impact with gender and cultural differences. There are different views from society of males and females. Males are portrayed as aggressive, controlling, and having a take-charge attitude. Women are seen as sensitive, emotional, and passive. There is a difference how males and females communicate verbally and nonverbally. Women are more expressive when they use non-verbal communication, they tend to smile more than men and use their hands more. Men are less likely to make eye contact than women are. Men also come off as more relaxed, while women seem tenser. Men are more comfortable with close proximity to females, but women are more comfortable with close proximity with other females. In terms of interpreting non-verbal signals, women are better than men are (Coggins, 2006).

Culturally, there is a world of differences in nonverbal communication. In comparing the United States with Latin America, we can see many differences. The hand gesture we use to tell someone to come here is the hand palm up with the index finger extending out three or four times is different in Latin America. In Latina America, this hand gesture means you are romantically interested in a person and it is considered solicitation. To tell someone to come here in Latin America the palm is extended down and move all four fingers in and out together three or four times. When traveling on buses in Latin America the elders will hold their hand sideways with all four fingers extended to let one know there is a pickpocket nearby. In the United States, when visitors come to our country, we usually do not greet them personally. Latin Americans give hugs and the men greet the women with “besitos” meaning they touch the cheeks and make a kissing noise with lips (Institute of Languages, 2011).

Some barriers to nonverbal communication include cultural differences, deceptive gestures, inappropriate touching, negative nonverbal communication, and perceptual filters. The different cultural differences are ethnocentrism, stereotyping, prejudice, and discrimination along with the hand gestures, touching, and facial expression. Ethnocentrism shows that one culture fill their group is superior to all other cultures. Stereotypes show the distorted or oversimplified views of different races of cultures. When a culture is prejudice towards another culture or group, a negative attitude is shown based on little or no experience. To avoid or exclude oneself from another culture or group discrimination is shown (Hybels & Weaver, 2007).

Different gestures often have vastly different meanings to people of different cultures. Nonverbal gestures can lead to misinterpretation. Touching can cause many problems in communicating if it is done incorrectly. A person may touch the other person during a conversation a lot and move close to them. Some people find touching as an invasion of their personal space. This is a barrier for all communication; people have a hard time communicating when they are uncomfortable. When a person displays negative nonverbal communication, it can also act as a barrier. For example, slouching, rolling of the eyes, moving quickly or slowly, or performing a variety of other negative physical behaviors, makes it difficult to communicate with them at all. This is because the person is creating a negative situation and when people feel uncomfortable they are unwilling to communicate. Facial expression can show frustration, anger, embarrassment, or uncertainty. They can contradict the verbal expression sending the real message that the speaker wants to send (Hybels & Weaver, 2007).

It is very important to learn how to improve nonverbal communication now that we have discovered that a communicator’s nonverbal communication can influence another’s perception of a message and that of the communicator. One must first monitor our own nonverbal communication skills. We should pay close attention when we are engaged in everyday routine conversations. It will help us to stay attuned to what we are doing and what kind of impression we are giving others. We need to ask ourselves these questions. Do we allow enough personal space so others are comfortableDo we show our interest by making eye contact with othersIs our face expression appropriate for the conversation at hand Is the voice tone appropriate for the situationBy being aware of these things we can improve our nonverbal communication skills.

In addition to those skills, we also must learn to be good discriminative listeners. It is relatively simple to hear a message, but we also need to be aware of nonverbal cues from others. We often get so preoccupied by what we are saying and what we are going to say as a response, that we are not sensitive to others needs. People often these express needs through their nonverbal communication, as opposed to what they are saying. Overcoming cultural barriers is another important step in communicating effectively. It is important to understand all aspects of communication (Hybels & Weaver, 2007). “Successful communication between people across cultures requires not only an understanding of language but also of the nonverbal aspects of communication that are part of any speech community” (Ha, 2008). It is more important to understand the non-verbal aspects of communication when people do not speak the same language verbally.

In conclusion, communication is complex and multifaceted. Nonverbal communication is a strong factor in today’s society and is used in many cultures. It gives insight to others true emotions and feelings, as well as their truthfulness and sincerity. Nonverbal communication can come in many forms, it can add to, or replace verbal communication, establish relationships and boundaries, and reflect different cultural values. It is symbolic, can be intentional or unintentional and differs between genders and cultures. Effective nonverbal communication can benefit us in interpersonal relationships, our careers and across cultures. It is our responsibility as effective communicators to understand the dynamics of this form of communication, and learn to use it so it benefits everyone involved. By tearing down any personal barriers or biases, and recognize our strengths and weaknesses, we can ultimately communicate in ways that decrease the likelihood of misunderstanding and increase our nonverbal communication as wells as verbally proficiency.

References

Coggins, S. (2006). Nonverbal Communication Between The Genders. Retrieved March 15,

2011 from http://www.shaicoggins.com/nonverbal-communication-between-the-genders/.

Dunn, L. (1999). Nonverbal Communication: Information Conveyed Through The Use of Body

Language. Department of Psychology. Retrieved March 14, 2011 from

http://clearinghouse.missouriwestern.edu/manuscripts/70.php.

Ha, M. (2008). Lessons in Intercultural Communication. Retrieved March 15, 2011 from

http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/news/art/2008/10/142_32870.html.

Henman, L. (2009). It’s Not Always What Say. Retrieved March 14, 2011 from

http://relationships911.org/experts/communication/notalwayswhatyousay.htm.

Hybels, S. & Weaver, R. (2007). Communicating effectively (8th ed). New York: McGraw-Hill.

Institute of Language (2011). Spanish and Nonverbal Communication, Latin America vs. United

States. Retrieved March 15, 2011 from

http://www.spanishprograms.com/spanish-culture.htm.

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Free Essays

Effects of Global Communication on Westernization

Introduction

Analysis of the explosion in international exchanges is mainly focused on the impact of globalization and between the peoples of the world economic aspects of the cultural exchanges between the expenditure. Americanization of globalization is another termGeneral pattern of media ownership that is west led by the United States to dominate the information the major media and entertainment sectors in international flows. But what is such a global way flow of information and entertainment on the national and regional media culture shockSome people believe that the international communication and media are lead to cultural homogenization, but the global / national / local interaction model may be more complex. (Montana, et al., 2008)

Globalization of western culture

As detailed in the previous course of global communications hardware and software industry is owned by a few multinational corporations, especially those based in the United States. So, first we study the Americanization.

Westernization

Westernization is a non-Western society that “Western culture” in the industrial, technological, legal, political, economic, lifestyle, diet, language, alphabet, culture, religion or values deal with the impact of these things. Westernization has been in the past few years the popularity of the world and accelerates the impact. It is usually a two-sided process, that Western influence and interests of their society by the impact of a change on the hope that at least in part to a more Westernized society in the realization of certain aspects of Western life or hope. Westernization can also be involved in the process of acculturation. Acculturation refers to the change in a society or culture; there will be two different groups of direct continuous contact. After exposure, the changes in cultural patterns in one or both of the culture are obvious. (Barnlund, 2008)

In popular speech, Westernization can also refer to Western expansion and colonialism on the local society. For example, the local people who have used European languages and customs of the characteristics of the West is known as assimilation or westernization. Westernization may be forced or voluntary depending on the exposure circumstances. Domination, destruction, resistance, survival, adaptation, and the local culture may follow different degrees of modification interethnic contact. In one case, the experience of local culture as a more powerful outsiders damage caused by a “shock period” is often the result from the encounter. This is the shock stage, particularly in relation to colonial expansion or the interaction between characteristics of the times. In the shock phase, civil repression of the use of force may lead to cultural collapse, or ethnic and cultural extinction, this is a culture of physical extinction.

The effects of global communication and how it develops

Hundreds of years ago, when the ship began to explore the world, they may never have thought, people can contact each other too quickly and easily in the 21st century. First of all, we want to know it is a global communications: it is sending and receiving information of a worldwide process. Like a full one on different areas (economic, educational, cultural, business, science, technology and politics.) country’s national communication, but today, global communications has greatly changed, it is increasingly faster, more convenient, more effective. (Kottak & Phillip, 2005)

In the past, it is difficult to obtain enough information on other countries of the world. Is there a link for each countryMost of the country has just co-operation with neighbouring countries. However, it really put their communication time. Because of the distance and low-technology, global communication is very limited. With the technology, significant changes have taken place, based on the invention of cell phones and computers where a dedicated global communications. They communicate a very important global role; they are widely used in the life of the people now in the application.

Development of technology is driving the global spread of growth to change people’s lives. People can keep in touch with each other mobile phones and computers, even though they live in different countries. Synchronous communication links to provide the people easy and fast way. In addition, people can acquire knowledge through the computer. We can better understand the world, we can know in our midst, what in the world on a daily basis, we can know everything, and we should know our stuff to learn, the fastest, we can do. (Velkley & Richard, 2002)

There have been advances in global communications, in cultural, economic and political globalization as a high-tech bridge to strengthen international exchanges and cooperation between each country. We have more opportunities and easy way to understand the culture of other countries, on the basis of their culture, its benefits; we have further cooperation with them to do business. With the cooperation of all ethnic groups in politics, no doubt played the entire country’s stability and development of an increasingly important role.

The growing high-tech, global communication in the past decade has brought changes of globalization. As the international business of this kind, its development speed is very fast. Some of the large companies from the developing countries are opening up new factories in developing countries. They are not only to promote cooperation among countries, but also increase local employment. It can also be ordered from the network products in the domestic and foreign. Their military practice is good for world peace. In addition, there are many regional and international organizations, ASEAN (the Association of Southeast Asian), the European Union, the Arab League, the International Monetary Fund, the World Trade Organization. While some organizations have long ago discovered that they have developed rapidly and in recent years played an important role in globalization. In short, the development of high-tech, global communication has been great progress today. It into a new era, knowledge, and we are full of opportunities. It makes the whole world is one family. (Berghahn & Volker, 2010)

However, this concept is misleading, one-way impact of linear and homogeneous medium. Technical effect is always the community mediation and construction. Each new technology must find in social life, a cultural space, in order to have any meaningful social relations impact. In the media, in technology ranging from the simplest to the most complex, easy access at any time from the unique situation of the small elite, the effects are even more complex and ambiguous. Macromedia, the distinction between the concept of media and micro media may illustrate this point. Communications (satellite, mainframe computers, the Internet, its branches, the World Wide Web) and Macromedia appears to be agents of globalization. Through global satellite and computer networks, cross-border data flows, scientific and professional e-mail, commercial advertisements, Macromedia is supporting the national market, social and cultural globalization.

In view of communication (print, film, radio) media are mainly government or pressure groups in their control function, so in short-term national integ agents in most cases, high technology, and the development of global communications have made great progress today. It goes into a new era, knowledge, we are full of opportunity. It makes the whole world is one family. (Chapman & Roger, 2009)

However, this concept is misleading, one-way impact of linear and homogeneous medium. Technology has been the effect of community mediation and construction. Each new technology must find in social life, a cultural space, in order to have any meaningful social impact. In the media, from the simplest to the most complex, at any time from the unique circumstances of the elite when the easy access technology, its impact is even more complex and ambiguous. Macromedia, the media between the media and the concept of micro-, may explain this difference. Communications (satellite, mainframe computers, the Internet, its affiliates, the World Wide Web), and Macromedia appears to be the agents of globalization. Through global satellite and computer networks, cross-border data flow, scientific and professional e-mail, commercial advertisements, Macromedia is supporting the national market, social and cultural globalization. Micro-communications (telephone, copiers, stereos, VCRs, music tapes and personal computer) in the power of the major media have given the centrifugal force of the external object. All three types of media, but through close government, market and civil society, social network connected. If there is no historical and cultural background in the specific circumstances of social and political functions, therefore, influence the media largely mysterious and incomprehensible. (Nadeem & Macaulay, 2009)

English as a global language

Modern English is sometimes referred to as the global lingua franca. English is the major in communications, science, business, aviation, entertainment, broadcasting and the international language of diplomacy. The impact of the British Empire is a language far beyond the British Isles, the initial transmission, the main reason. After World War II, the growing economic and cultural influence of the United States has been greatly accelerated by the British. Working knowledge of English is required in some areas, professional and vocational. More than one billion people as a result of the English-speaking at least a basic level (see English language learning and teaching.) English is one of six United Nations official languages.

English, computer science and the world because English is so widely used, it is often referred to as a, Auglobal language, the African Union, the common language of our times. Although English is not the official language in most countries, this is the most frequently around the world, the language of second language teaching. (Fitzpatrick & Michael, 2008)

Some linguists [attribution needed] that it is no longer exclusive, Aunative English speakers, the AU and cultural symbols, but a language, it absorbs all kinds of culture around the world and will continue to grow. It is by international treaties, air and sea traffic official language, and the European Union, the United Nations, one of the official languages and the most international, including the International Olympic Organizing Committee for the English language is the language most often studied as European Union foreign language ( 89% of students), France (32%), Germany (18%) and Spain (8%), followed. In non-English speaking countries, a large part of the population claim to be able to speak English, the Netherlands (87%), Sweden (85%), Denmark (83%), Luxembourg (66%), Finland (60%), Slovenia (56%), Austria (53%), Belgium (52%), and Germany (51%).

Norway and Iceland also have charge of the majority of English speakers. In addition, the younger generation in these countries, English is close to 100%. [Edit] books, magazines, newspapers, and in English in many countries around the world. English is the most commonly used language in science. In 1997, the Science Citation Index reported that 95% of the articles are written in English, even if only half of the country from the English came. (Steger & Manfred, 2009)

Conclusion

The spread of the global communications technology, such as internet, has lead to the above mentioned changes and westernization in countries around the globe. Due to all this adaptation of the western culture by the people living around the globe, there is a growing threat of people completely moving to giving up their own cultures to completely transform to the western cultures.

References

Baluska, F.; Marcuso, Stefano; Volkmann, Dieter. Communication in plants: neuronal aspects of plant life. Taylor & Francis US. (2006). p. 19.

Barnlund, D. C. A transactional model of communication. In. C. D. Mortensen (Eds.), Communication theory. New Brunswick, New Jersey: Transaction. (2008).

Berghahn, Volker R. The debate on ‘Americanization’ among economic and cultural historians, Cold War History, Vol. 10 Issue 1. (2010). pp 107–130

Chapman, Roger. Culture wars: an encyclopedia of issues, viewpoints, and voices, Volume 1. (2009).

Fitzpatrick, Michael. Body art blunders. The Guardian (London). (2008).

Kottak, Phillip. Window on Humanity. New York: McGraw-Hill. (2005).

Montana, Patrick J, Charnov, Bruce H. Management. 4th ed. New York. Barron’s Educational Series, Inc. (2008). Pg 333.

Nadeem, S, Macaulay’s. (Cyber) Children: The Cultural Politics of Outsourcing in India. Cultural Sociology. (2009).

Steger, Manfred. Globalization. New York: Sterling Publishing. (2009).

Velkley, Richard. The Tension in the Beautiful: On Culture and Civilization in Rousseau and German Philosophy. Being after Rousseau: Philosophy and Culture in Question. The University of Chicago Press. (2002). pp. 11–30

Categories
Free Essays

Mobile Communication Satellite Systems

Introduction

In this era of 21st century one cannot imagine human life without mobile communication. From mobile handsets to computers, smart-phones to laptops, iPads and Cable Television systems everything is part of this mobile communication era. As the countries are progressing, competition among them is increasing all over the world. With the advancement in technology lives of people are getting faster and busier, businesses and industries are expanding globally, therefore, the demand for mobile communication is increasing immensely with every passing day. Scientists, researchers and engineers are always looking for ways to serve the world with this demanding technology in every possible way.

During the last 25 years there has been a tremendous growth in the field of satellite communication. The idea of using the Satellite Systems for mobile communication has appealed to many people in the past and it still continue to do so. There has been an extensive research going on in this particular area globally. A lot of progress has been achieved so far but it is a fact that advancement in technology can probably never end.

As the demand for communication is increasing, means and resources to carry out this communication are often limited. For instance if communication of information is to take place between the countries that are hundreds of miles apart, across the ocean, the typical wired medium cannot always be used. And also how are we supposed to communicate when we are not connected to the land communication systems by any meansHere satellite systems come into play. With the help of satellite systems we can provide mobile communication services even to very fast moving vehicles, to the aircrafts during flights, to ships and submarines in oceans, and also to remote areas of earth where there is no communication infrastructure. So in this way we are able to provide services to the areas where application of wired cable medium is not always practically possible.

Satellites are the object that revolves around the earth in fixed orbits. These satellites are at typically 400 km to 36000 km above the earth surface. Our purpose of communication over long distances is served by these satellites. Another advantage of using the satellite systems for communication is that they can cover a very large geographical area over the earth surface to provide communication means. When we are using a satellite system we are not limited by the problem factors that we encounter on earth such as laying hundreds of miles of expensive cables, space and land to store machinery and equipment to handle this sort of communication, buildings to handle all the infrastructure needed etc. Therefore, Satellite Systems are often given a thought as a better alternative for mobile communication.

Before we look into the details of how mobile communication takes place through these satellites, we need to first understand the satellite systems in general as well to have a better understanding of how the whole technology works.

Satellites are sent into space from earth. When in space above the earth surface, these satellites are made to revolve around the earth in fixed orbits with the help of gravitational force of the earth. To understand the phenomenon we can take a very simple and well known example from nature and that is of the Moon. Moon is the natural satellite and as it revolves around the earth, it shines over a huge geographical region of the earth. In a similar fashion, man made artificial satellites, though not as big as the moon but still, covers a considerably large section of the earth to provide communication.

These artificial telecommunication satellites can be in four different kinds of orbits above the earth surface depending on the purpose they were sent into space. These can either be geo-stationary orbits, elliptical orbits, medium earth orbit or low earth orbits.

In geo-stationary orbits, as shown in Figure 1, the satellite remains at a fixed location over the earth surface which means it covers the same geographical region of the earth.

Figure1: Geo-Stationary Orbit

Elliptical orbits are used when satellites are required to cover a certain geographical area of the earth for longer period of time than the other geographical region of the earth. Figure 2 displays in general a satellite in an elliptical orbit.

Figure2: Elliptical Orbiting Satellite

Medium earth orbit is between 5000 km to 15000 km above the earth surface. While in low earth orbits, satellites revolve around the earth in circular orbit at about 400 km above the earth surface. Figure 3 depicts the low earth orbits (LEO) and medium earth orbits (MEO) of a satellite.

Figure3: LEO and MEO orbiting Satellite

Three types of services can be offered by a telecommunication satellite. First is FSS (Fixed Satellite Services), which is for long distance telecommunication services provided by different telecommunication networks on earth stations. Second is DBS (Direct Broadcast Satellite services), which is used for direct Television signals broadcasting from large earth stations. And third is MSS (Mobile Satellite Services), which is used to provide mobile communication services to different stations on earth.

In the year 1976, Mobile Satellite Communication was started by Communications Satellite Corporation (COMSAT), which is a US based company belonging to the field of telecommunications. The communication satellites launched by them were called MARISAT (Maritime Satellites) and later an International Maritime Satellite organization (INMARSAT) was formed which now provides Mobile Satellite Communication Services [1]. Earlier satellite communication used to take place by routing calls and information from public landline to an earth station first, and then forwarding them to the satellite. But now mobile communication can take place directly between a satellite and a station or handset on earth.

This entire phenomenon fantastically sounds simple but there can be few problems as well in using satellites for mobile communications. For instance, keeping the satellite in its orbit is not an easy task. The orbital motion does not depend only upon the earth’s gravitational pull. When a satellite is in its orbit, its orbit is also affected by the presence of other bodies such as the Moon and Sun. Moreover, our earth is not a perfect sphere so its own gravitational force on a satellite can vary at different locations and the Moon and Sun have their own gravitational forces as well that affects the path of a satellite. Under all these circumstances, satellites do drift from their original path which needs to be adjusted in order to keep the satellite on track.

To transmit and receive signals, these telecommunication satellites have a number of antennas to receive signals from one mobile earth station and transmit it to one or more mobile earth station. There is a Doppler Shift as well in the transmitted signal which occurs because of the movement of the satellite and rotation of the earth about its own axis.

Mobile communication satellite systems can provide services to those areas that cannot get services from networks on earth. These systems can be of three possible forms [2]. First is that a direct link to the gateway of satellite station can be given to a mobile earth station to connect to the network. Second is that a mobile earth station can be connected to a translator station through a radio link which is responsible to transmit the data from a mobile earth station to the gateway station through a satellite link. In the third type of mobile communication satellite system again a direct link can be provided to a mobile earth station but a dedicated satellite system would be required for this purpose.

Different frequency bands are allocated to the satellites to perform mobile communication. Mostly used frequency bands are L-Band, C-Band, Ka-Band and Ku-Band. L-Band has the uplink frequency of 1.6 GHz and a downlink frequency of 1.5 GHz for commercial mobile satellite services (MSS). The long wavelength of this band allows it penetrate building structures and also get least affected by rain. Therefore, less powerful antenna transmitters are required. C-Band has the uplink frequency of 6 GHz and a downlink frequency of 4 GHz. Ka-Band uplink and downlink frequencies are 30 GHz and 20 GHz respectively for commercial use of mobile satellite mobile services and 44 GHz and 20 GHz of uplink and downlink frequencies for military use. This band has very large spectrum and high bandwidths available. But due to short wavelengths, it is largely affected by rain. Therefore, to increase the signal power very high power transmitters are required. On the other hand, Ku-Band has the medium range of frequencies. The uplink frequency is 14 GHz and downlink frequency is 12 GHz for fixed commercial use. Due to medium wavelengths, its signals can also penetrate many structures and are still able to provide high bandwidths but still they are affected by rain.

As the earth terrestrial networks, satellites are also required to serve a number of users simultaneously. So at a time when millions of users are accessing satellite services there is a need to have some sort of mechanism to differentiate and secure each user’s transmission. For this purpose, there are a number of multiple access schemes of which the three most commonly used are TDMA (Time Division Multiple Access), FDMA (Frequency Division Multiple Access) and CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access).

In TDMA, there are different time slots. Each mobile earth station transmits its data in chunks in a specific time slot at the same frequency. So the data of each user is differentiated in different time slots.

In FDMA, different frequency bands are allocated to different users for both the uplink and downlink channels. However, TDMA is a better because of its lower distortions of inter-modulation. In FDMA, downlink bandwidth is divided among a number of users whereas in TDMA full downlink bandwidth is available to all users during a specific time slot allocated. Also in FDMA, we may have to decrease transponder power by one half to minimize the distortion due to inter-modulation.

The third most commonly used multiple access scheme CDMA has no restrictions as in TDMA and FDMA. Each user can transmit its data at any time and can also use the same frequency bandwidth. In CDMA, each mobile earth station’s transmission is separated by a unique code. Signals transmission are separated by using spread spectrum technology that is why CDMA is also called Spread spectrum Multiple Access. Spread spectrum scheme assigns to each mobile station a unique code to generate a pseudorandom sequence to separate signals transmission and to spread the transmission across the whole bandwidth available from the satellite. When the signals transmission arrives at the receiver, it can be extracted by using the same sequence generated initially. The only limitation of the CDMA scheme is that it is very expensive to implement and can support a very limited number of mobile earth stations at a time.

As the science has advanced in technology, there are a number of mobile communication satellite systems now. Now we have a look at the different mobile communications satellite systems that exist today. These mobile communication satellite systems are divided into three groups namely: Geo-Stationary Systems, Big Low Earth Orbit (LEO) Systems and little Low Earth Orbit Systems. In Geo-stationary systems, INMARSAT and MSAT are the two satellite systems that we have. In Big LEO systems we have IRIDIUM, ARIES, ELLIPSO and ODYSSEY satellite systems. For little LEO systems we have LEOSAT, STARNET, ORBCOMM, and VITASAT satellite systems.

Of these satellite systems, International Maritime Satellite (INMARSAT) System is a very well known global mobile satellite telecommunication system. These satellite systems are connected to PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Networks) and they provide connectivity and communication services to a mobile earth station all over the world. Which means a user with a satellite mobile handset connected to the INMARSAT satellite system can receive services while roaming in any part of the world without being dependent on local terrestrial public networks. So a satellite connection proves to be really helpful in case something goes wrong with the terrestrial network such as a natural disaster etc.

INMARSAT is running its operation on four geo stationary satellites providing global coverage namely: INMARSAT-A, INMARSAT-M, INMARSAT-B and INMARSAT-C. High quality telephone, fax and high speed data services are provided by INMARSAT-A satellite system. In addition to dialling to a telephone or fax number directly, it can also provide image and video transmission services. INMARSAT-M provide services at a much cheaper rate as compared to INMARSAT-A. It has a fully digital and portable terminal to provide high quality cellular voice and data transmission services. Additional functionalities are added in INMARSAT-B satellite system compared to INMARSAT-A at a much lower charges. Along with new services, it provides very high quality voice services and very high data rates with a scope to increase them further in future. INMARSAT-C comes as a low cost communication system with a light weight terminal powered by a battery. It comes with a small personal computer to communicate with the network headquarter whenever needed.

The following Figure 4 shows the statistics of the INMARSAT satellite systems all over the world [3].

Figure 4: INMARSAT Satellite System Coverage and Service Providers [3]

Iridium Satellite System was proposed and developed by the Motorola Company in collaboration with a few other companies. This satellite has been purchase by the Iridium, Inc Company. In this satellite system, satellites are set into orbits in 6 different polar orbital planes with a total of 72 satellites at about 780 km above the earth surface [4]. Satellites are divided into groups of 11 with equal distance among them. These are all Low Earth Orbit Satellites. L-Band frequency band is used by mobile earth stations to access satellite link using TDMA or FDMA schemes. Access of the mobile stations need to be synchronized to enable them to transmit and receive in the same time frame slot. Each satellite can handle more than 1000 calls at a time. All the satellites can route traffic to each other as well. This satellite system is designed in such a way that global coverage is achieved and gateway stations, which need to be connected to public switched telephone network on earth, required are less in number.

Two other LEO satellites systems are ARIES and ELLIPSO which are set into circular orbits above the equator to provide low cost services.

Another very well known satellite system is GLOBALSTAR system which provided full global connectivity. This system consists of 48 satellites divided into groups of 6. These satellites are set into orbit in eight different planes at 1414 km above the earth surface and are inclined at 45degrees and 135degrees to the equator. There is no exchange of data among these satellites as in the Iridium System. Therefore, a mobile earth station can only get access to the satellite link when the satellite has a line of sight path to the gateway earth station. Mobile stations can access the satellite using L-Band frequency band. Code division Multiple Access (CDMA) scheme is used to separate transmission of each mobile station. Six spot beams are used to cover the same geographical area on earth as is required by the Iridium satellite system. Satellites in GLOBALSTAR system complete their lifecycle between 5 to 15 years.

OrbComm launched its first two satellites in 1995. This satellite system is capable of providing remote monitoring and mobile tracking along with many other commercial services. OrbComm also contains 48 satellites which are in Low Earth Orbits. Access by mobile earth stations to these satellites is made on VHF (very high Frequency) band. The uplink band is 148 MHz to 150 MHz and the downlink band is between 137 MHZ to 138 MHz. Signal and data transmitted from the satellites are not directly forwarded to hand held devices first, rather they are first diverted to the gateway station on earth or public switched telephone network and then they are forwarded to mobile handsets. Satellites in this system have a lifecycle of about four years.

Intermediate Circular Orbit (ICO) satellite system consists of ten satellites with the help of which it can provide full global coverage. These satellites are divided into groups of five into two orbital planes at about 10,355 km above the earth surface. They orbit the earth the earth in about 6 hours serving a geographical area on earth for 20 minutes. Each satellite in the Intermediate Circular orbit can provide up to 4500 channels for voice data traffic and access to these channels is made secure and reliable by using the Code Division Multiple Accessing (CDMA) scheme. The terminals ICO systems are capable of supporting dual mode which means that they can operate with satellite and as well as public switched telephone networks.

In this entire scenario, each type of satellite system has its own advantages and disadvantages. Geo-Stationary satellites can be useful for one form of mobile communication but in some scenarios it may be more feasible to use Low Earth Orbit satellite system. Like with the help of three Geo-Stationary satellites we can provide almost full global coverage. As the satellites remain at the same point above the earth in Geo-Stationary system, the transmitters and receivers can have the fixed antenna positions without the need to keep track of the satellite which at times can become a very tedious task. Because they are located at about 36000 km above the earth, they are less affected by the atmosphere around the earth during its orbit making its life cycle greater than the other satellite systems. On the other hand, there are certain disadvantages of the Geo-Stationary system as well. Besides almost having no coverage at the north and south poles, one of the biggest problems in this system is performing voice and data communication over these satellites. Because they are far away from earth’s surface, there is very high latency or delay in the transmission and reception which makes it unfeasible for voice traffic. And also because of its large distance from earth’s surface, very high power antennas are required for these satellites which consumes a significant battery power. Moreover, sending a satellite into a Geo-stationary orbit from earth is very expensive as compared to other Low Earth Orbit satellites.

While with the Low Earth Orbit (LEO) satellite systems, transmission rates of about 2.4 kbps can carry out voice data communication efficiently. Because these satellites are orbiting the earth at much lower altitude as compared to Geo-Stationary satellites, transmission power required for the antennas is much less which in turn saves the overall battery power consumed. And for the same reason, the delay or latency in the transmission is much less which can compete with the wired cable terrestrial networks on earth. Higher elevation of these satellites to the equator enables are better coverage at the north and south poles. And also because the geographical area covered by one satellite in LEO system is smaller; frequency reuse policy can be best utilized. On the other hand, the very obvious and possibly the one of the biggest problem with this satellite system is the need to have a large number of satellites to provide global coverage. As the satellites in this system do not stay at a fixed position over the earth surface, their serving time geographical is only about 10 to 15 minutes which require very complex antenna mechanism on earth to keep track of the satellites. Another disadvantage of having low earth orbits is the very short lifetime of a satellite. Friction from earth’s surrounding atmosphere can severely effect the lifetime of a satellite in LEO satellite system. If a satellite mobile user is roaming around the world, providing global connectivity to that user also require interconnectivity of these large number of satellites.

Mobile Communication Satellite Systems are evolving very quickly in this era to keep pace with the increasing demand of communication globally. The trend is shifting towards the LEO satellite systems from the Geo-Stationary satellite systems because of very less latency delays in LEO systems as far as voice data communication is concerned. However, these satellite systems cannot fully replace the need of terrestrial networks because of these systems are still very expensive for an average user and not all countries of the world are developed enough to cope up with these satellites systems.

References:

[1] Handbook of Antennas in Wireless Communications, Chapter 2, Michael John Ryan, University of New South Wales

[2] Requirements for a Mobile Communications Satellite System. Volume 1: Executive summary, Final Report, 15 Dec. 1981 – 31 Mar. 1983, TRW, Inc., Redondo Beach, CA.

[3] The Use of Mobile Satellite Communications in Disaster Mitigation, Eugene I. Staffa, World Conference on Natural Disaster Reduction Technical Committee Session C

[4] The Past, Present and Future of Satellite Communications, John V. Evans

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Describe factors to consider for effective communication

Describe factors to consider for effective communication
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Introduction

When it comes to communication, the problem of perception takes the central stage. Varner and Beamer (2010, p. 35) defines communication as “the perception of verbal and nonverbal behaviour and the assignment of meaning to them.” They considered perception so important that as long as the perception process takes place, communication occurs. Covey (1992) also emphasised the significance of perception by attributing perception problems as one of the root causes of communication problems. Differences in perceiving the world would inevitably lead to communication barriers because people communicate on the basis of their own perceptions and perception determines how people behave toward the world (Singer, 1998). Therefore, great stress has been put on the role of perception in interpersonal communication that Singer (p. 10) even proposed in communication “reality ··· is less important than one’s perception of reality”. To discuss the crucial role of perception in communication, this essay first examines the relationship between reality and perception of reality, followed by a discussion on how perception affects communication in the stages involved. Finally, the role of three types of factors in perception – physical, environmental and learned factors, will be examined.

Reality vs. perception of reality

Effective communication is hindered when communicators have different understandings of reality. Cognitive theorists are convinced that reality is more about the things in here – in the mind, ratherthan the actual things out there (Singer, 1998). Perception, an active process by which people become aware of the world, is the window through which we experience the world .To illustrate the relationship between the two, Singer makes an analogy between the human perception process and a class assignment, both comparing and contrasting what enters and exits the mind (p. 187). Since it is impossible for a person to either experience everything in the world or have exactly the same life story as another person, no one will have absolutely right perception about the world or exactly the same perception as others’. The fact that family members of twins can often easily tell one from the other explains that even twins do not have identical experiences and perceptions.

The formation of divergent perceptions

As Roger asserts, nothing, neither the Bible nor Freud, is more reliable than personal experience in the perception process (as cited in Griffin, 2006, p.32) . This supports Stacks, Hickson and Hill’s (1991, p. 4) suggestion that “Communication brings us together and perceptions tend to separate us.” Clearly, the impact of divergent perceptions in interpersonal communication has gain great attention of communicators. To reduce the difficulties in communication, it is necessary to understand how the divergent perceptions are formed in the first place.

Perception is a series of procedures that blend into one another. To conveniently discuss the these procedures, perception is generally divided into three stages: selection/stimulation, organization, and interpretation/ evaluation (Lane, 2010; Kelly, 2006; Dwyer, 2009).

The first stage is selection, in which the world comes to us through our sensory receptors. Naturally you cannot perceive everything; rather you engage in selective perception, where you pick up some stimulation over others. Two types of stimuli are considered more likely to draw our attention: meaningful ones and noticeable ones (Devito, 2009). Things meaningful or noticeable to one person do not often mean the same to another person. Therefore, during this stage, people of different backgrounds often receive different messages from the same world. For example, when a couple attend a concert, the husband, a musician, tends to focus on the musical part while the wife, a fashion designer, pays more attention on the costume and stage design. Suppose the design of the concert is excellent but the singer is off key from time to time. It is very likely that the couple end up having different comments on the concert. In this way, differences occur in the very first stage of perception process.

In the next stage – organization stage, the stimuli that come into our brain will have to pass through “the filters of our censor screens” where they are rearranged and decoded in some ways we are used to or we learn to (Singer, 1998. p. 11) These ways of organizing data become the shortcuts that enable us to make connections between new information and previously gained knowledge, and thus simplify our understanding and remembering of new people and events. However, these shortcuts can be misleading if you rely on them too much. You may either add additional data which are consistent with your way of organizing or ignore those which is inconsistent, in order to make the new experience organisable. As the constructivists identifies, we often “fit over realities to bring order to our perceptions” (Griffin, 2006, p. 191). As a result, perceptual variations occur because we gain our perception not in the way it should be, but in a way every individual needs it to be.

Having discussed the first two stages, we will now have a look at the third stage – interpretation/evaluation, in which we make sense out of the organised stimuli and find out the value of them. As Kelly (2006) suggests, we never have all the facts, and our interpretation and evaluation are largely dependent on the past knowledge and our own value systems. When personal experience and values are involved, differences are bound to occur. In other words, we get used to seeing some stimuli in a certain way that we don’t take others into account (Lane, 2010, p.41). A good example of this would be stereotyping. When people stereotype others, they put people into categories and assert all people in the category share the same characteristics. The consequence is that barriers in communication often occur on the basis of false perceptions of others because great deal of individual differences are not taken into consideration (Lustig, 2010). The results of two studies of stereotypical perception of African Americans show that African Americans are estimated to earn less than they actually do, are seen as poor and intimidating (Dixon, 2008) and are more likely to commit crimes (Ford, 1997). Many of stereotypes are created by direct experience with only a few members of a certain group. Others may even come from second-hand materials such as mass media without any direct experience. Yet many of us still use stereotypes to make assumptions and interpretations. This is very likely to cause communication gaps between people who perceive and expect others in their own understandings.

Interrelationship of the stages

Above is an analysis of how perceptual differences come into being in each of the stages. However, it is helpful to clarify, though listed in such a way, the three stages do not occur one by one. Rather, these stages often take place almost simultaneously (Lane, 2010, p. 36) and there is no way one can draw a dividing line between any of them. In addition, we should not see any stage as the start or the finish of a perception process (Russel, cited in Kelly, 2006, p. 36). It is common for people to think of these stages as a linear sequence, from gathering data to organizing the data and finally attaching some meanings to them. However, this process does not end at the interpretation stage because the result of interpretation/evaluation would affect your future sensing/selecting behaviour. In this case, some other ways of breaking down perception process would help make the point clearer. Initial three stages remaining the same, DeVito (2009, p. 64) believed two other steps take place afterwards: memory and recall. These two steps can lead to people’s perceptual inaccuracy in a way that people may lose or unable to recall some information. Even worse is retrieving the wrong message. Griffin (2006, p. 189) add a utilizing stage to emphasise the effect of memorized and recalled data on future communication behaviour. His suggestion of comparing the stages to the five interconnected Polemic Rings is extremely helpful in explaining the relationships of these stages of perception process (p. 187).

Seeing the fact that the stages are actually interrelated and never come to an end, we can better know how we make mistakes when we think we see every aspect of an issue and make a right judgement. The truth is that previous interpretation has already had an effect on the selecting process, and we only pick up those data we want to, which further influence our organizing and evaluating process. For example: A person who experienced a destructive earthquake may notice a noise from the ground seconds before the shaking (Sensing stage). He then established a connection between the two: “A noise often comes before a big earthquake” and considered it a way to make predictions of future earthquakes (Organizing and interpreting). This interpretation inserts an influence on his future processing of information in the way that he may become very sensitive to similar sounds and more likely to link some other unusual phenomenon to an earthquake.

From above we can see that differences take place in almost every step we take when perceiving the world. Just like what Ribbins and colleagues words said, the factors which “shape and sometimes distort perception can reside in the perceiver, in the object or target being perceived or in the context of the situation in which the perception occurs” (as cited in Dwyer, 2009, p. 14). These stages are like a giant filter, every information in the external world have to pass through the filter which is made of your own experience, beliefs and value systems (Bjorseth, n.d.). Again, similar to the analogy of class assignment described in the beginning of this essay, what exits your mind differentiate from what comes to your mind because your uniquely designed filter has performed its job.

Nature of factors that affect perception

Having identified how the factors impact on the perception process in each stage, the essay now focuses on the nature of the factors that affect perceptions. Singer (1998) has suggested three categories of them: physical determinants, environmental determinants and learned determinants. Physical determinant are commonly understood as our five sensory receptors recognized by Aristotle. Interestingly, Singer’s later research has revealed at least thirty-seven differentiate sensory inputs and even more are expected to be discovered (Singer, 1998, p.14). Apart from these, other physical differences such as body shape, skin colour, hand size that make us unique in the world can contribute to differences in perception. Just like every the uniqueness of individual’s physical characteristics, everything happens in a unique context. The unique surroundings of an event can be very powerful in forming different perceptions. For example, the result of judging whether a person is young or old will probably be influenced by which age group he is compared with.

The third type of determinants, learned determinants, is seen as the most important. How people acquire their perceptual constructs has been thoroughly studied. The result of an experiment on people who are born blind but later restored with their sight shows that without the visual experiences, these people cannot tell a figure or discriminate simple shapes until several months’ visual learning (“Perception – Innate and learned”, n.d.). This reveals that learning experience is necessary and powerful in shaping and changing people’s perception. Similarly, in Varner and Beamer’s (2010) perception model of choices, they explain that when you encounter something unfamiliar, you either choose not to attend to it or lose memory of it until you learn how to change your mental category to accommodate it. Singer (1998, p. 19-27) also devised an exercise to test how perceptions of the same stimuli differ in different cultures. The exercise finds out that perception is greatly influenced by culture, a combination of learned activities. The more specific the symbol is, the more the interpretations are alike. The more abstract the symbol is, the more various meanings are attached to it. With such findings, it is not difficult to understand that communicators from different cultures would undoubtedly meet difficulties with the different views they hold on the same thing.

From the discussions above, we have seen that misperceptions can arise when we collect information, organise it in different ways, and assign different meanings to it. In addition, differences of perceptions are determined by various factors, especially learned ones. Communications based on divergent perceptions will inevitably meet difficulties. To make communication of higher level of effectiveness, it is a good start for communicators to bear in mind the powerful influence of different perceptions on communication process, to learn the culture of other groups and to make your perceptions closer to each other.

References

Bjorseth, L. D. (n.d.). Improve your communication skills by “cleaning your filter”. Retrieved March 21, 2011 from:

http://www.sideroad.com/Business_Communication/improve-communication-skill.html.

Devito, J. A. (2009). The interpersonal communication book (12th ed.). Boston: Pearson Education, Inc.

Dixon, T. L. (2008). Network news and racial beliefs: Exploring the connection between national television news exposure and stereotypical perceptions of African Americans. Journal of communication, 58, 321-337.

Dwyer, J. (2009). Communication in business: Strategy and skills (4th ed.). Australia: Pearson Education Australia

Ford, T. E. (1997). Effects of stereotypical television portrays of African-American on person perception. Social Psychology Quarterly, 60(3), 266-275.

Griffin, E. (2006). A first look at communication theory (6th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.

Kelly, M. S. (2006). Communication at work: Ethical, effective, and expressive communication in workplace. London: Pearson Education Inc.

Lane, S. D. (2010). Interpersonal communication: competence and contexts (2nd ed.). Boston: Pearson Education, Inc.

Lustig, M. W. & Koester, J. (2010). Intercultural competence: Interpersonal communication across cultures (6th ed.). Boston: Pearson Education, Inc.

Perception – Innate and learned. Retrieved March 23, 2011 from:

http://science.jrank.org/pages/5093/Perception-Innate-learned.html

Singer, M. R. (1998). Perception and identity in intercultural communication. Maine: Intercultural Press, Inc.

Varner, I., & Beamer, L. (2010). Intercultural communication in the global workplace (5th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill

http://www.sideroad.com/Business_Communication/improve-communication-skill.html

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Integrated Marketing Communication

Abstract

This paper aims at the clarifying various beliefs about IMC in the consumer market especially in planning and advertising. IMC has a great potential for several organizations and businesses operating in varied environments. This paper focuses on the reasons for the adoption of IMC as well as the barriers against the efficiency of operation of IMC strategies. Several authors view IMC differently which has elucidated varied reactions. The paper also analyses empirical studies in IMC and the relevant contemporary studies. IMC is the new paradigm in the marketing sector despite posing varied reactions from different scholars.

Important Terms: Marketing, “Integrated” Marketing Communication (IMC), Advertising, Planning

1.1 Introduction

Integrated marketing communications is the basic platform which a given company cautiously desegregates and aligns its varied communication channels to help deliver a consistent, compelling clear messages about the organization and its products (Ewing 2009: 114). This is first aimed at identifying the consumer needs and building a strong brand identity in the given market. IMC is also concerned with reinforcement and trying together all the messages and images of a given brand. IMC therefore ensures that all the corporate messages, identity and images are coordinated across the marketing communication channels. This has led to the various definitions linked to IMC; where the consensus aims at defining them as; the integration and coordination of all the marketing avenues, sources and tools in a given company to a seamless program which ensures maximum effect on consumers as well as all the end users at a relatively low cost (Yeshin 2006: 32). The integration affects firms, customer focus, marketing channels and internal directed communication. This paper outlines varied views in planning and advertising strategy of IMC perspectives.

1.2 Reasons for Adopting IMC

Integrating marketing is one of the most significant moves that marketing developments have adopted since 1990s. The IMC approach in marketing “communication advertising” strategy and planning is being adopted by both the small scale and large scale companies. This is based on the various business-to-business values attached.

1.2.1 Rationality Norm

Yeshin (2006: 67) opines that under uncertain conditions, managers and organizations usually limit techniques that are considered fashionable. The management fashions and efficient perspectives differ in terms of the reasons fuelled by the organisation and the managers. The performance gap is the major determinant of any economical or technological idea (Luck and Moffat 2006: 321). Several managers seek novelty and security which is part of a fashionable management technique. In addition, management techniques offer rationality appearance which satisfies the social pressures from the stakeholders. IMC has also been accepted by various advertising agencies and marketers which imply that IMC is a rational norm (Cornelissen 2001: 485). IMC assists managers and marketers to solve a complex situation in a rational manner. Eagle, Kitchen and Bulmer (2007: 961) concludes that there is a rationality norm upon which managers must conform in relation to the norm of progress. There is no universal evaluation for this set of ideals which makes it difficult for these ideals to be fully attained. Thus, IMC becomes the only way which can alleviate these ideas.

1.2.2 Use of Rhetoricals

Ewing (2009: 110) states that IMC is closely associated with terms such as synergy, integration and holism argued on the rhetorical presentation as well as the appeal of its thoughts. Lack of theoretical debate and rhetoricals exemplifies symptomatic management style. Rhetoricals means written and spoken courses which justify the application of a given idea or technique. Organizations that have adopted rhetorical rely on construction of myths around the organization which is regarded a powerful discourse by managers in implementing their ideas (Hartley and Pickton 1999: 102). Rhetoricals and management fashion techniques provide a platform which helps managers justify their actions. Therefore through rhetoricals, managers can effect change, rationalize their behavior and bring on credibility and expertise in their organizations.

1.3 Barriers to IMC Implementation

Kitchen and Schultz (1998: 472) reiterates that managers and marketers find it difficult to cope with changes in investment and marketing communications. This has led to varied reactions about the growing trends in advertising and generally in marketing communications. Both the agencies and clients are negatively affected when creating and implementing an effective communication programme. Media fragmentation impacts negatively in several communication sectors which declines audience access to debates about measurement techniques. This has therefore forced re-examination of the marketing communication devices with the consequences of traditional media which may hinder new appliances in the industry (Percy and Elliot 2012: 123).

There is a distinct drift in the evolution of the IMC and the marketing theory practice. For instance, Luck and Moffat (2009: 318) outlines that there is turf war and tension between control of “communication” development and strategy and coordination of marketing communication. Ewing (2009: 109) acknowledges that the most valuable customer should be considered first. This state differs from the reality where there is little evidence of differential customer value. It is also clear that there exists an undefined relationship between different marketing communications and consumers. However, there is an emerging synergistic effect on the combination of print and television advertisements.

1.4 Empirical study on IMC

Duncan and Everett (1993: 35) state that it is quite difficult to take a perfect research on IMC as it comprises both the processes and the concepts. The concepts also differ based on the type of the organization and the researcher. Research on IMC focused on several aspects such as cooperation within an organization, compensation systems employed, and an organizational strategic development. This therefore posed a huge hindrance on the implementation of the IMC in UK.

In UK and USA, there is minimal evidence on the IMC prescription in various corporate and marketing communications. Cornelissen and Lock (2000: 12) asserts that 81% of the largest corporate in US have arranged their external communication into separate marketing departments and public relations. On the other hand, Eagle, Kitchen and Bulmer (2007: 968) reported that out of 323 organizations in the UK, Canada and the USA, public relations was more effective when communication function is equal to marketing communication. In addition, Eagle, Kitchen and Bulmer (2007: 966) study also looked at the effectiveness of an organisation of central public relations against the various independent units of communication programmes like marketing communication. This study stressed that there is little evidence about delegation of communication “responsibilities” and there are no negative consequences on the structural dispersion of communication disciplines to form separate units.

Kitchen, Kim and Schultz (2008:540) acknowledges that IMC is quite prevalent in USA and UK as compared to other countries. It is predetermined in the global communication “techniques” despite suggestions by Luck and Moffat (2009: 315) that media integration and advertisement are the major instruments in global promotional and marketing campaigns. In addition, Yeshin (2006: 89) opines that IMC is contingent on an individualised behavioural database which hinders an active organizational process in developing a sophisticated marketing communication network.

1.5 IMC and Contemporary Marketing Communication

Percy and Elliot (2012: 190) confirms that there is little empirical proof about marketing communication and IMC shift from mass marketing communication to the impending IMC practices. The IMC concept has been proven to be ambiguous as it is still underdeveloped. The marketing communication organization has however set up a clear description of change as integrated configurations have now replaced the functional structures in an advertising agencies and companies. Traditionally, IMC has a holistic system which fosters zero based thinking; this is a state where most cost effective solutions to communication are critically chosen. Hartley and Pickton (1999: 99) argue that integration is the sole solution to foster cross-functional cooperation in varied disciplines. In addition, Ewing (2009: 113) posits that integration is considered as the merger of barely all the marketing communication.

1.6 Conclusion

Validity is one of the descriptive theories that marketing communication management has established. Recent reviews on IMC research in UK and US have suggested that IMC has been periodical and as such; little evidence has been posed to validate contemporary marketing communication processes. I have therefore argued for IMC concept to be considered rhetorical. IMC is also less practical in UK and US as IMC concepts is considered ambiguous. Changes in market trends have also hindered the incorporation of IMC in today’s advertising. The paper has also critically analysed the rhetorical reasoning. In addition, past and contemporary marketing communication researches have been clarified.

Bibliography

Cornelissen, J. (2001). Integrated Marketing Communications and the Language of Marketing Development. International Journal of Advertising, 20(4) pp. 483-498

Cornelissen, J. P. and Lock, A.R. (2000) ‘Theoretical Concept or Management FashionExamining the significance of IMC’, Journal of Advertising Research, 40 (5), pp.7-15.

Duncan, T. and Everett, S. (1993) ‘Client Perceptions of Integrated Marketing Communications.’ Journal of Advertising Research, 33 (3), pp.30-39.

Eagle, L. , Kitchen, P. , and Bulmer, S.(2007). Insights into Interpreting Integrated Marketing Communications. European Journal of Marketing, 41(7/8) pp. 956-970.

Eagle, L., Kitchen, P.J. and Bulmer, S. (2007) ‘Insights into interpreting Integrated Marketing Communications: A Two-Nation Qualitative Comparison’ European Journal of Marketing, 41 (7/8), pp.956-970.

Ewing, M. (2009). Integrated Marketing Communications Measurement and Evaluation. Journal of Marketing and Communications, 15(2-3), pp. 103-117

Hartley, B. and Pickton, D. (1999). Integrated Marketing Communications Requires a New Way of Thinking. Journal of Marketing Communications, 5. Pp 97-106

Kitchen, P. and Schultz, D. (1998). IMC-A UK ad’ Agency Perspective. Journal of Marketing Management. 14, pp. 465-485.

Kitchen, P., Kim, I. and Shultz, D.E. (2008) ‘Integrated Marketing Communications: Practice Leads Theory’, Journal of Advertising Research, 48 (4) pp.531-546.

Luck, E. and Moffat, J. (2009). ‘IMC: Has Anything Really ChangedA New Perspective on an Old Definition’, Journal of Marketing Communications, 15 (5), pp.311-325.

Percy, L. and Elliot, R. (2012). Strategic Advertising Management. Fourth edition. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

Yeshin, T. (2006). ‘Advertising’. London: Thomson learning.

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Free Essays

The significance of power relations in communication in social work

Introduction

Effective communication is important in all spheres of human activity, in the interplay between human nature or individual agency and society or social structure. In this regard, the informal interactions form the basis of social work and effective communication helps coordinators relate better with subjects (Koprowska, 2008). Social work refers to multi-disciplinary endeavours that seek to improve the quality of life and wellbeing of individuals, groups or communities through interventions on behalf of those afflicted with poverty, real or perceived social injustices and violations on their human rights. Interventions could be through such mechanisms as research, direct practice, education, policy and community organizing (Trevithick, 2010).

Social influence and/or control are concepts that refer to the means through which people’s feelings, thoughts, behaviour and appearance are regulated in social systems. This is achieved mainly through socialization, the effect on one’s opinions, behaviour and emotions by others through conformity, peer pressure, socialization, leadership and persuasion (Trevithick, 2010). Through this, individuals identify with the social system’s values and norms and thereby acquire stake in the maintenance of these norms and values. This ability to influence the behaviour of people is defined as power (Bar-On, 2002). Disparities in power between a social worker and the service user often result in the entrenchment of discrimination, oppression and non-involvement in practice. This paper explores the significance of power relations in communication in social work and contribution to the discrimination and oppression and ways in which this can be challenged including enhanced participation and involvement, especially through effective communication.

Power relations in social work

Social work is inherently political and is therefore all about power and, thus, it is essential that social workers understand the effects of power within the structures in which they work and the society overall (Bar-On, 2002). The term power is often used interchangeably with authority which is perceived as legitimate by the social structure, the patterned social arrangements present in society that both emerge from and determine the actions of individuals (Bar-On, 2002).

The sociological examination of power is concerned with the discovery and description of relative strengths, whether equal or unequal, stable or subject to change. Given that it is not innate, and that it can be granted to others, power can be acquired through the possession or control of a form of power currency which include: formal authority delegated to a holder of a position (legitimate power); authority derived from particular skills or expertise (expert power); capacity for the application of negative influences such as threats and punishment (coercive power); as well as the ability to offer rewards and therefore to wield power over subjects (reward power); and the ability of the power wielder to attract others and build loyalty (referent power) (Bar-On, 2002).

Lukes (1974), in developing the three-dimensional model of power, argues that power is socially and culturally located with the culturally patterned and socially structured behaviour or practices of groups or institutions significantly sustaining the bias in the system far more than the series of individual actions. Thus, there is a latent contradiction of interests between those exercising power and those affected, whose real interests are excluded. This argument challenges the views based on the idea of collective consent fronted by Arendt’s communications theory and the Webarian view of legitimate power which dispel the view that there is potential for powerlessness in social interactions. This has implications for social work including the view that social workers exercise power though in many instances are unaware of the wielded power, and that it is essential to examine the position of social workers as it may affect what they see as their role (Bar-On, 2002).

This scenario exacerbates powerlessness with a person (service user) agreeing to an action due to the social structure of power which places authority on the social position of the professional rather than on the agreement or consensus between the two parties. This is heightened in such instances as the use of coercive power inherent in the legitimate power of the social worker conferred by statutory legislation (Askheim, 2003). Experiments in psychology suggest that the more power wielded by an individual, the less they can take the perspective of others, implying that they have less empathy. It was also noted that decreased power is related to enhanced constraint and inhibition (Bar-On, 2002). Stereotypes and prejudices inherent in social structure and culture therefore remain unchallenged resulting in possible discrimination, oppression or exclusions of sections of society or individuals requiring service (Thompson, 1993; Trevithick, 2010).

The post-modernist view of power fronted by Michael Foucault (1980) gives a central role to communication and knowledge in the understanding of power within society. The guiding principle of modernity reinforces existing power structures thereby increasing the status of professionals, placing value on professional knowledge and marginalising local or subjugated knowledge. This focus is what is referred to as professional discourse (Foucault, 1980). This exclusion is a reflection of the critical power imbalance within societal structure, and the legitimization of knowledge demonstrating the link between the exclusion for professional discourse and oppression (Pease, 2002). Users of services or clients often feel that social work endeavours are, in this regard, inappropriate or insensitive to their needs.

Social workers occupy a unique position in society working for both the service user and the good of society overall. This often results in tensions between loyalties to service users and to service agencies or public authorities. Often, social workers acknowledge feeling powerless in their dealings with service providers, though their statutory powers make them believe they are overly powerful. Herein, an interesting paradox arises in the dichotomy of power in which social workers are often considered as either ineffective or extremely forceful (Pease, 2002).

The dichotomous view of power is often exacerbated within social work as a result of the opposing structure between the worker and the client which forces the worker into the powerful position, controlling and directing the course of action often in a one-dimensional framework, while the client is forced into the position of powerlessness (Askheim, 2003). This is evident in the fact that despite the decade-long adoption of the anti-oppressive practice theme to guide teaching and practice of social work, recipients of such practice (clients) have not been significantly involved in discussions regarding the development of such anti-oppressive practice (Pease, 2002).

Paradigm shift for greater effectiveness

There is need for social workers to understand their position within the prevailing power structures, as well as to understand why they feel powerless in their work (Pease, 2002). This would enable the challenging of structures that perpetuate oppression and the development of solutions that aid the combat of negative effects of power differentials on the users of service (Askheim, 2003). Differences in power have to be taken into account and new procedures introduced so as to improve communication and, therefore, relations which can then foster the effective conduct of social work within communities.

The key to taking account of the power by social workers in their work and relations with service users is empowerment. This entails the redistribution of knowledge and the uprising of other forms of knowledge which have been disregarded and subjugated as opposed to focus on professional knowledge as the only legitimate form (Pease, 2002). This would require the shift from such modernist focus towards a more critical approach to challenge the dominant discourse and to question the connection between knowledge and power enabling the enhancement of influence through social work approaches that aim to foster social transformation and change. Through this, the inclusion of service users in social processes, professional discourse and development of practice is legitimized (Askheim, 2003).

This offers a more realistic approach to the challenge of prevailing power structures that tend to perpetuate and enhance discrimination or oppression of service users incorporating various dimensions including the oppressed, as well as the social workers. In order for social work to learn from its relations with service users and organizations (service providers), it is essential for their greater involvement to ensure true empowerment, balancing between gains from expertise and the empowerment of individuals involved in various aspects of social work (Askheim, 2003; Pease, 2002).

Empowerment would reduce the inequalities in power relations in social work as well as challenging consequent oppression and discrimination. It would also enable the formation of meaningful professional partnerships with community organizations allowing for learning from both experiences and expertise. For significant change towards empowerment, there is need for focus and emphasis on social processes which encourage social workers to listen to the stories of service users, externalizing them and thereby enabling service users to retain greater control of the management and overcoming of the problems (Pease, 2002; Thompson, 1993). Focus is on the service user and the objective is their enablement to identify their own needs and solutions within the wider social context, rather than seeking to fit a pre-formed and set social model with its embedded ills (Askheim, 2003; Trevithick, 2010).

Effective communication

Emphasis on social process and the stories and experiences of service users requires the employment of effective communication to foster social work relations and essential partnerships. Communication is undoubtedly vital, an important part of human existence and is at the heart of all social work, in dealing with people and their problems (Thompson, 2011). Its skilful use by social workers can be hugely beneficial in empowering service users as it has the power to ensure the promotion of their well-being and equality. The basis of social work is informal interactions enabling better relations with service users, with the requirement for their trust and comfort essential to success of endeavour (Koprowska, 2008). This is only possible through effective communication.

Effective communication skill does not just refer to verbal skills but also includes proficiency in non-verbal communication skills, especially in instances where service users may have difficulty communicating their problem verbally (Koprowska, 2008). There is need for such skill in communication which can enable the service user to build up confidence, incorporate friendship and good relations (reliability and compassion), as well as enabling them to feel that their problems are addressed in sincerity enabling them to open up in discussions which enhances overall understanding and formulation of solutions to problems (Thompson, 2011).

Hindrances to effective communication

With a number of complicating factors challenging communication, it is no justification to avoid making an effort to engage in social interaction. This would amount to the perpetration of discrimination and hindrance to the effectiveness of social work (Koprowska, 2008). There are various ways in which difficulties in communication tend to arise. First and most obvious is anxiety, the feeling of discomfort attendant to the lack of awareness of what is expected in a particular situation. This can lead to lower concentration and increased tension which hinders effective communication. The assumption of similarity is another hindrance and occurs often unintentionally, based on a lack of knowledge or awareness, when operations follow norms and rules of culture which are not universal and which may not be appropriate in other contexts (Thompson, 2011).

Another hindrance to effective communication and similar to the assumption of similarity is ethnocentrism. This is based on distorted cultural assumptions and the belief that one’s culture supersedes all others. The power dynamic in this case is significant hindering relations and interactions. Stereotyping and prejudice is also a significant hindrance to effective communication with rigidly held views and prejudgment hindering interaction and connection (Thompson, 2011). Other impediments include variations in language, misinterpretation of non-verbal communication often due to variations in cultures, as well as disabilities which among other difficulties hinder effectiveness of communication and interaction. To tackle these challenges and impediments, it is essential that root causes are identified early and dealt with before they significantly affect social interactions and outcomes of social work endeavours (Koprowska, 2008).

Knowledge and skill in communication are closely interrelated with skill dependent and drawing upon knowledge, while knowledge is broadened and deepened through practice, ideally the application of skills. Building of skills ought to be premised upon the building up of knowledge (Thompson, 2011; Trevithick, 2010). Among essential skills for effective communication is the ability to tune in to various communication situations in varied contexts; as well as, sensitivity to potential difficulties and hindrances so as to enhance capacity for response and their prevention. There is also need for a balance between anxiety and complacency, being able to recognize potential difficulties but also making sure that anxiety is checked (Trevithick, 2010; Thompson, 2011).

Conclusion

Herein, the complexity of power has been demonstrated especially in light of social relations inherent and essential in the conduct of social work. For social workers to take issues of power into account, it is essential that three factors be considered: They must be aware of their power both within the social service structure and with regard to the power balance between them and the service user. This benefits them in enhancing their empowerment and approaches to practice. Secondly, empowerment is essential with the service user central to the process of change, and social workers facilitating, not directing the change.

Reasons for feelings and powerlessness need to be addressed rather than being overridden through legitimate power in authority or expert power in ‘knowing what’s best.’ Third, there is need for social workers to take responsibility for their power acknowledging and valuing power differentials rather than viewing them as barriers to empowerment. These need to be incorporated in practice so as to enhance and encourage inclusivity in the social service structure, allowing for continuous critique and analysis.

The development of effective communication skills for employment in effective social work requires the development of appropriate skills but also necessitates knowledge of issues involved that can enable a social worker to deal with challenges attendant to interactions essential in social work. Knowledge, unlike the other sources of power which can be used positively and negatively, can, however, also be used in a transformative way.

References
Askheim, O., 2003. “Empowerment as guidance for professional social work: an act of balancing on a slack rope.” In: European Journal of Social Work, Vol. 6, No. 3, pp. 229-240
Bar-On, A., 2002. “Restoring Power to Social Work Practice.” In: British Journal of Social Work, Vol. 32, pp. 997-1014
Foucault, M., 1980. Power / Knowledge: Selected Interviews and other Writings:’ 1972-1977.’ London: Harvester Press
Koprowska, J., 2008. Communication and interpersonal skills in social work (3rd ed.) University of York. Exeter: Learning Matters.
Lukes, S., 1974. Power: a radical view. London: Macmillan
Pease, B., 2002. “Rethinking Empowerment: A Postmodern Reappraisal for Emancipatory Practice.” In: British Journal of Social Work, Vol. 32, pp. 135-147
Thompson, N., 1993. Anti-Discriminatory Practice. The Macmillan Press Ltd.: London
Thompson, N., 2011. Effective Communication: A guide for the people professions, p. 83. Palgrave: Hampshire
Trevithick, P., 2010. Social work skills a practice handbook. Open University Press: Berkshire

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The Psychology of Thinking and Communication

Recommendations:

Considering the costs involved in implementing Jolly Phonics as a learning tool for children in schools, and the advantages of this tool in helping children to learn reading and writing skills quickly, a three year investment in this project is proposed for the LEA.The investment costs will be over ?150,000 for three years or ?50,000 annually for extensive implementation of this program in schools for early training of children.

Executive Summary:

The report focuses on LEA’s decisions on investments for the use of Jolly Phonics, which is a learning aid and technological tool specifically meant for children 6-14 years old. Jolly Phonics uses audio visual means to help children learn basic literacy skills and especially in reading and writing. Jolly Phonics is considered to use a child centered approach to learning through synthetic phonics. The method uses 42 letter sounds and the multisensory method is motivating for children and teachers, as students are expected to achieve better skills when they use the Jolly Phonics method. This is because children can learn the methods using audiovisual skills, sounds and different sensory methods. Considering the psychological theories of learning, the use of audiovisual skills could be most effective. Jolly Phonics is exclusively designed for children. The technique helps students to achieve skills in learning and reading, although thinking and communication are equally important. Jolly Phonics helps in increasing student motivation and children learn faster when using Jolly Phonics as a learning aid. This analysis shows the advantages of using Jolly Phonics in the schools to help teach children the basic skills of learning and examines whether the LEA should invest to help Jolly Phonics reach a large scale user base.

Background:

The report focuses on the processes of thinking, learning and communication in children and explains the various perspectives on how children could learn to read. Jolly Phonics is already used in some schools as a child centered and child oriented approach to learning new skills. It is important as the technological aid tool helps make learning easier and faster for children in schools. Jolly Phonics is made up of 42 letter sounds (Lloyd, 1992). The multisensory sight and sound method of learning motivates children and makes learning fun and easier. It also helps make teaching easier for the teachers who use Jolly Phonics as a teaching tool (Lloyd, 1992). Teachers feel happy when their students can achieve a level of learning with the Jolly Phonics technological tool for reading and writing. In multisensory methods, the letter sounds are categorized into seven groups and the sounds are presented in a specific order. The phonics technique enables children to begin building words as early as possible (Bowey, 2006). Jolly Phonics uses the synthetic phonics approach to teaching children the key skills of reading and writing and basic literacy approaches.

Jolly Phonics lays the foundation for teaching literacy over three years in school, and the tool helps to hasten the process of learning (Lloyd, 1992). Jolly Phonics serves as a facilitator for word building. It is a comprehensive basic tool for learning and complemented by other tools including Jolly Readers and Jolly Grammar (Jolly learning, 2012). These three exercises help in laying the foundations for learning, and the five key skills of reading and writing (Lloyd, 1992).

Jolly Phonics training courses are comprehensive and use literacy skills that are built upon by Jolly Grammar that helps the children to enhance grammar skills (Jolly learning, 2012). If Jolly Phonics is used as a training tool in schools for enhancing reading and writing skills among children, Jolly Grammar and Jolly Readers will have to be used as well. The implementation of these three programs will be ?50,000 annually although this program and technical tool for reading will be of substantial help to teachers and students alike.

Evidence and Literature Review:

The Jolly Phonics learning programs have been successfully implemented with the collaboration of NGOs and charities such as Absolute Return for Kids. Evidential results from these implementation case studies have shown that the Jolly Phonics and synthetic phonics programs have helped very young children in learning basic literacy skills of writing and reading (Bowey, 2006).

Children learn how to form and use these letters quickly and easily (Lloyd, 1992). Along with developing reading skills for the alphabets, with the aid of sounds, children can enhance their new writing skills. The multisensory methods used in Jolly Phonics help the children to blend the sounds together so that they can read and write new words using the sounds of new letters (Jolly learning, 2012). With the sounds of the new words, children use segmentation to identify the association of words and sounds that helps them to improve their spelling (Stuart, 1999). There are some tricky words that use irregular spellings that help the children to learn these spellings and words separately.

The tool draws on the findings from learning research as it is known now that reading and writing develop together and reinforce one another. It is also suggested that writing words the way they sound, helps children to read faster.

In a report on synthetic phonics used in an East London School for children, the BBC (2005) reported that the method was revolutionary in teaching the basic skills of reading and writing to children using sounds. There is evidence that the program encourages parental involvement and there are beneficial effects of parental praise and encouragement as this helps to improve learning skills. The Jolly Phonics program could help students to develop comprehensive grammar, reading, writing and spelling skills (BBC, 2005).

Conclusion:

Considering the benefits of this program and the learning skills that the tool helps to achieve, the LEA would be recommended to invest for 3 years before further reappraisal of the project results. The rationale for a three-year investment could be drawn from the fact that Jolly Phonics is most effective for the first three years of learning. With a three year investment from LEA, Jolly Phonics could become a successful technical tool for schools and the results of the implementation of the program have been provided by studies in schools of developing countries already using Jolly Phonics as an effective learning aid.

Bibliography and Further Information

Adams, M. J. (1990) Beginning to Read: Thinking and Learning about Print. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press.

BBC NEWS (2005), Trusting Phonics retrieved Feb 26, 2013 from http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/newsnight/4584491.stm

Bowey, Judith A. (2006). Need for systematic synthetic phonics teaching within the early reading curriculum. Australian Psychologist, 41(2), 79-84

Johnston, Rhona S. & Watson Joyce (1997). Jolly Phonics is research based – Systematic/Synthetic Phonics. Article. Literacy & Learning Magazine, Autumn issue.

Jolly learning (2012) Teaching literacy with Jolly Phonics. Retrieved February 26th 2013 from http://jollylearning.co.uk/overview-about-jolly-phonics/

Lloyd, Sue, 1992. The Jolly Phonics Handbook. Jolly Learning Ltd. Essex, United Kingdom

Stuart, Moral (1999). ‘Getting ready for reading: Early phoneme awareness and phonics teaching improves reading and spelling in inner-city second language learners’. British Journal of Educational Psychology. The British Psychological Society, 69, 587–605

References

BBC NEWS (2005), Trusting Phonics retrieved Feb 26, 2013 from http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/newsnight/4584491.stm

Bowey, J.A. (2006). Need for systematic synthetic phonics teaching within the early reading curriculum. Australian Psychologist, 41(2), 79-84

Jolly learning (2012) Teaching literacy with Jolly Phonics. Retrieved February 26th 2013 from http://jollylearning.co.uk/overview-about-jolly-phonics/

Lloyd, S, (1992). The Jolly Phonics Handbook. Jolly Learning Ltd. Essex, United Kingdom

Stuart, M. (1999). ‘Getting ready for reading: Early phoneme awareness and phonics teaching improves reading and spelling in inner-city second language learners’. British Journal of Educational Psychology. The British Psychological Society, 69, 587–605

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Free Essays

The power of social media in political communication

Research Question

To determine the impact of social media on the way that political institutions and organizations communicate to the public including the unintended impact of social media on political communication.

Research Objective

The track the evolution of social media use in political communication both as intended by those disseminating the information and the unintended impact of having such assessable communication methods for the general public.

Significance and Context of Research

Increasingly in political communication, social media has been used as a primary method of disseminating information, gathering information and testing public opinion. Indeed certain countries continue to use these methods as a primary means of lobbying support. However, not only does it present enormous benefit to political organizations, it also presents a unique opportunity to the public combating abuse of power and an increased awareness and accountability. Some research even goes as far as to suggest that the impact of social media has enhanced the citizen participation in democracy increasing the commitment thereto. In the age of social media as a primary means of communication, the role and impact of this on political communication is boundless and significant.

Methodology

The primary method of research will be the analysis of different systems of social media usage. There is some literature written on the topic, examining different facets of the social media usage in political communication and this will serve as a useful indicator of the ways that social media is used in political communication. Thereafter, individual case studies on various methods that have been employed to great effect need to be examined. In other words, by examining how different political organizations have used social media to their advantage. The sources of these case studies will be evident in the literature written on the topic. How the organizations use social media and the effect that it has will be the primary focus of the research. The effect of social media usage will include the benefits on participation as well as the disadvantages relating to sensationalism and accuracy.

References
Clay Shirky (2011) ‘The Political Power of Social Media’ Foreign Affairs, 90(1), p28-41
Erik Qualman (2009) ‘How Social Media Transforms the Way We Live and Do Business’ [online] Available on http://www.ebscohost.com.ezproxy.uct.ac.za/uploads/corpLearn/pdf/bbs_socialnomics.pdf [Accessed on 7 July 2012]
Erik C. Nisbet, Elizabeth Stoycheff, & Katy E. Pearce (2012) ‘Internet Use and Democratic Demands: A Multinational, Multilevel Model of Internet Use and Citizen Attitudes About Democracy’ Journal of Communication, 62, 249–265
Henry Farrell (2011) ‘The Internet’s Consequences for Politics’ [online] Available on http://crookedtimber.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/ARPS.pdf [Accessed on 7 July 2012]
John C. Bertot, Paul T. Jaeger, Justin M. Grimes (2010) ‘Using ICTs to create a culture of transparency: E-government and social media as openness and anti-corruption tools for societies’ Government Information Quarterly, 27, 264–271
Michael J. Magro, (2012) ‘A Review of Social Media Use in E-Government’ Sci., 2, 148-161
Wenfang Tang and Shanto Iyengar (2011) ‘ The Emerging Media System in China: Implications for Regime Change’ Political Communication, Special Issue [online] Available at http://myweb.uiowa.edu/wenftang/p/scanned%20publications/Tang%20and%20Iyengar%202011.pdf [Accessed on 7 July 2012]

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Free Essays

The role of originality and creativity in setting out a good marketing communication strategy

Introduction

The paper panda tour of introducing 1600 paper pandas in Hong Kong has demonstrated the use of quite original and creative elements, which are important aspects in setting out a good marketing communication strategy (Ng, 2014). It has been indicated that marketing managers have tried their best to use original methods of attracting customers to particular products and services. The dimension of creativity implies one’s talent in presenting projects that not only keep the attention of the audience but also make them realise that creativity is an indicator of long-term success (Thun, 2010). The objective of this paper is to explore the impact of originality and creativity on the process of developing a positive marketing communication strategy.

Originality and creativity are major elements in setting out a relevant marketing communication strategy. These aspects allow marketers to send reliable brand messaging across numerous marketing channels, including social media which is associated with adequate creativity (Porcu, del Barrio-Garcia, & Kitchen, 2012). The paper panda tour serves as a proper example of how business should provide customers with more than the standard form of advertising (Thun, 2010). For instance, the idea of Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) makes a clear sense in this context by emphasising the originality and creativity dimensions of the strategy behind the paper panda tour. Researchers suggest that marketing teams should focus initially on the customer, which is the case with the paper pandas (Porcu, del Barrio-Garcia, & Kitchen, 2012). Customers are exposed to the original and creative project of paper pandas through a mix of integrated communication methods, which are considered by people eye-catching and trustworthy.

According to marketing researchers, IMC is an innovative and creative step because the complete culture of marketing agencies, in-house marketing departments, and marketing consultants had expanded the idea of separating advertisement, direct marketing, sales promotion, and public relations, rather than the pleasant, customer-centred development process that IMC requires (Duncan & Mulhern, 2004). Integrated Marketing Communication has become an important part in marketing because the technological system has the integration of business stakeholders (Kalamas, Mitchell, & Lester, 2009).

According to experts, planning and implementation of all marketing communications are required to be done in an original and creative manner in order to meet the marketing objectives and attract more customers (Vance, Howe, & Dellavalle, 2009). The process of building and applying different communication programs reflects in the possibility to have a solid impact in the future over time (Kitchen & Schultz, 1999). The general IMC method focuses on customers and functions to establish and classify the methods to extend the influential communications programs. For the creators of the paper panda tour, it has become important to plan, develop, implement and assess the coordinated and measurable influential marketing communication programs applicable to external and internal viewers over time (Laurie & Mortimer, 2011). It is a policy in which different marketing communication tools like promotion, public relations, sales promotion, direct marketing and personal selling operate together to strengthen the communication process to target consumers. Such holistic and creative approach has led to the popularity of paper pandas.

Media has experienced a wide phase of development in the last decade, implying that the creators of this original project have considered the importance of applying essential marketing strategies to reach out an optimal number of customers (Duncan & Mulhern, 2004). Marketing managers were formerly focused on advertising their product/service through traditional marketing forms like TV, radio and newspapers (Gronroos, 2004). However, now the current marketing trend appears to be digital as Information Technology has become an important element of daily lives (Reid, 2005). The digital aspects of originality along with the physical dimensions of creativity evident in the massive project of paper pandas have indicated the use of proper communication strategies. A concept shift has been presented, or in other words, the creators of the project have focused on demonstrating a move from traditional marketing towards digital content that flows across various integrated media channels. As a result, more people can be informed about the project of the paper pandas and thus would prefer to see it (Laurie & Mortimer, 2011). The theory definitely suggests about building the marketing communication mix which is considered being interdependent and bringing more incorporation and moving towards having several methods of accessing media, i.e. bringing in more flexibility in the marketing mix by using a combination of traditional and new digital media. Furthermore, it refers to the actions of media audience as being migrant, i.e. changing the marketing form that can provide them with the required experience. In such marketing environment, customers are dynamically involved and looking for new, original and creative content to make proper connections.

Transition has played a relevant role in shifting the marketing trends, which is obvious in the formation of the paper panda project. The concept of transition indicates that the traditional media is not being displaced; rather its operations and significance are being shifted with new media options (Reid, 2005). This reflects in providing detailed online information about the project, such as in social media platforms and blogs. For instance, in a blog by Ng (2014), the focus is on describing the paper panda project in detail, with an emphasis on the substantial number (1600) of paper pandas exhibited to the audience in Hong Kong. In this way, media transition is more than merely a technological shift changing the relationship between existing technologies, sectors, markets and supporters (Kelm, 2011).

Transition has brought remarkable changes in the media rights and has improved marketing media concentration. The elements of originality and creativity have played an important role in forming a good strategy that involves a combination of different IMC elements (Michaelidou, Siamagka, & Christodoulides, 2011). According to marketing experts, there are five established IMC elements known as Advertising, Promotion, Direct marketing, Personal selling and PR (Public Relations). It has been indicated that the paper panda project in Hong Kong has been successful in covering all these elements and achieving substantial customer interest (Porcu, del Barrio-Garcia, & Kitchen, 2012).

A good marketing strategy normally focuses on building original and creative content that creates attention as well as motivational encouragement for users to share it with their friends and families (Kelm, 2011). For instance, the paper panda project can be adequately popularised through different social media platforms because it is a relevant step to rely on the contribution of different users to talk about the exciting project. The keys to social media success are user contribution, user brand loyalty, user enthusiasm, and the communication between people (Laurie & Mortimer, 2011).

The introduction of an original and creative design related to the paper pandas, and the creation of opportunities for social interaction, are some of the features making this project quite appealing to the general audience. Many marketing experts long before have recognised synergism and originality as important concepts behind the introduction of a good marketing strategy; the incorporated effect of each effort would force the marketing communication to become more effective (Laurie & Mortimer, 2011). In this way, originality and creativity can enhance the brand image and popularity of companies that consider the importance of endorsing those concepts (Kelm, 2011).

Communication, especially if it is done in an original manner, also represents a significant driver of marketing communication activities. Communication, as seen in the paper panda project, is a fundamental element which allows the creators of the project to connect with the audience (Duncan & Mulhern, 2004). This simply occurs through communicating of ideas and seeking to establish particular perceptions of these original paper pandas introduced in a quite creative way. With the rapid development of technology, modern organizations can utilise different communication channels to attract a significant number of customers. As mentioned, the role of social media platforms is important in the process of facilitating organisational communication (Kelm, 2011). The creators of the paper panda project have obviously ensured the creative application of a relevant marketing planning platform in a direction of expanding the positive impact of communication on all stakeholders (Ng, 2014). Communication has a strategic role in contemporary organisations. It is important to emphasise its priority of expanding particular marketing activities through the development of diverse communication channels. The emphasis is to deliver a consistent and properly structured message about the original project.

Creativity is basically the application of better ways of solving organisational problems. The ability of an organisation to change in the environment provides the degree of elasticity and adaptability in all kinds of situations through creativity (Laurie & Mortimer, 2011). Originality means that a company has promising financial prospects that will ensure increase in profits. It means that whatever changes occur in the market, the company will continue to grow by providing the required services, hence increasing its market share and in the end have high revenues. Thus, originality and creativity can be used as adequate measures of performance as related to the paper panda project (Ng, 2014). It is important to mention that this project is quite flexible and has produced the necessary positive effects that original and creative projects usually produce in the audience.

This paper discussed the role of originality and creativity, which have been indicated as essential principles of a good marketing strategy (Duncan & Mulhern, 2004). Details about the paper panda project have been provided, as this information was closely related to the dimensions of originality and creativity (Kelm, 2011). The paper focused on explaining how the paper panda project ensured the use of originality and creativity in the sense that no one has ever done a similar project. In conclusion, the success of this project points out that marketing managers have demonstrated the implementation of a proper marketing strategy combining the dimensions of originality and creativity.

References

Duncan, T. & Mulhern, F. (2004). A white paper on the status, scope and future of IMC. New

York: McGraw-Hill.

Gronroos, C. (2004). The relationship marketing process: Communication, interaction,

dialogue, value. Journal of Business and Industrial Marketing, 19(2), 99-113.

Kalamas, M., Mitchell, T., & Lester, D. (2009). Modeling social media use: Bridging the

communication gap in higher education. Journal of Advertising Education, 13, 44-57.

Kelm, O. R. (2011). Social media: It’s what students do. Business Communication Quarterly,

74, 505-520.

Kitchen, P. J. & Schultz, D. E. (1999). A multi-country comparison of the drive for IMC.

Journal of Advertising Research, 39(1), 21-38.

Laurie, S. & Mortimer, K. (2011). ‘IMC is dead. Long live IMC’: Academics’ versus

practitioners’ views. Journal of Marketing Management, 27(13/14), 1464-1478.

Michaelidou, N., Siamagka, N. T., & Christodoulides, G. (2011). Usage, barriers and

measurement of social media marketing: An exploratory investigation of small and medium B2B brands. Industrial Marketing Management, 40(7), 1153-1159.

Ng, P. (2014). 1600 pandas haunt attention! Harpers Bazaar. Retrieved from

http://www.harpersbazaar.com.hk/lifestyle/entertainment/1600-pandas-hong-kong-tour-timetable-2014

Porcu, L., del Barrio-Garcia, S., & Kitchen, P. (2012). How Integrated Marketing

Communications (IMC) worksA theoretical review and an analysis of its main drivers and effects. Comunicacion Y Sociedad, 25(1), 313-348.

Reid, M. (2005). Performance auditing of integrated communication (IMC) actions and

outcomes. Journal of Advertising, 34(4), 41-54.

Thun, J. H. (2010). Angles of integration: An empirical analysis of the alignment of internet

based information technology and global supply chain integration. Journal of Supply Chain Management, 46(2), 30-44.

Vance, K., Howe, W., & Dellavalle, R. P. (2009). Social internet sites as a source of public

health information. Dermatologic Clinics, 27(2), 133-136.

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Legalising Prostitution: Debate, communication model and evaluation

Section 1: Group Discussion

This section contains what was discussed during group discussion session. The general area of prejudice chosen for discussion was prostitution. Dubbed the oldest profession, there was unanimous observation among group members that prostitution is still loathed in the society, and commercial sex workers, mostly women, are still treated with contempt within our society. The common notion about prostitution is that whilst men are often ‘buyers’ of sex service from prostituting women, the latter are victims of exploitation. The term exploitation is used because women who engage in prostitution are seen to be compelled to engage in commercial sexual activities against their will. Whilst the common fact is that women who engage in prostitution see it as a source of income, and participate in it with their full consent without coercion, we observed that it is quite difficult to convince a person whose belief is entrenched in the moral dimension of commercial sex work that it is a normal activity. The prejudice against women is also entrenched by the belief that women who engage in this trade are of lesser social standing, even though this is always not the case.

The other common belief is that while women prostitutes are looked down upon, men do not suffer any form of prejudice. In other words, men are often seen as the exploiters of sex workers, and hence do not enjoy any fair share of prejudice. On the other hand, both men and women engaging in prostitution are seen as morally repugnant, hence the common prejudice that come with it.

The debate to legalise prostitution or not has been in the public domain for quite some time now. But it is the increased attention that it has received in the recent past that has invoked a lot of passionate debate in many legal jurisdictions as regards whether to legalise it or not. We may be all aware that one of the reasons why same-sex marriage has gained much currency today is because it is no longer viewed as socially unacceptable to the extent that it is not legal to hold gay couples in contempt in many countries. In recent past, it was not difficult to meet some strong views against marijuana user; with some even believing that the latter were losers who should be kept at the periphery of the society. However, criticism over marijuana use has waned in the recent past because of the recent revelation that it could be used to treat cancer. In addition, marijuana has also been used for pain relief for some time. This recent development has meant opposition to campaigns to keep marijuana illegal is at an all-time low.
However, the same cannot be said about prostitution. The stigma associated with the sex trade remains strong, with women and men engaging in it seen as socially ambiguous individuals without moral standing in society. This kind of idea can promote dangerous conducts towards prostitutes. The fact that prostitutes are not regarded highly puts them at more risks to abuse including rape and murder. In addition, prostitutes are more likely to contract sexually transmitted diseases, further endangering their lives.

Decriminalising prostitution will not only protect women but will also improve their safety and their rights, because however much it is made illegal, the oldest profession is not likely to go away anytime.

Section 2: Commentary and Rationale

This section will cover commentary on the topic and discuss it based on the chosen model of communication, the heuristic-systematic model.
The debate on whether to legalise prostitution or not has intensified in the recent past, with voices advocating for the latter increasing in number every day. It’s no doubt that the stigma associated with prostitution is real, and remains strong amidst the growing knowledge that it will not stop any time soon. This is despite the rising evidence that decriminalising the trade has some significant health benefits. Research by two economists, Scott Cunningham and Manisha Shah (cited in Albarracin, et al., 2005, p. 78), looked at the situation in Rhodes Island when prostitution was accidentally decriminalised and found that cases of gonorrhoea had drastically reduced, as rape incidences. . Shannon et al. (2004, cited in Griffin, 2006, p.139) also confirmed this result when they conducted a study in Vancouver, British Colombia, and found out that decriminalising of prostitution can significantly reduce HIV prevalence by minimising its spread.

Despite all the evidence showing the benefits of legalising prostitution, the benefits have not attracted the attention of the legislators. . In addition, many have argued that idea of legalising prostitution is unattractive to voters and therefore to politicians. There is need to focus on presenting arguments that provide options to the intended audience on the need to legalise abortion, and that is where the model for persuasive communication will be necessary in the subsequent section of this paper.

The Heuristic-Systematic Model of Social Information Processing
The concept of persuasion is an important aspect to not only convincing the people to accept an idea but also to drive changes of mind towards the accomplishment of the idea. The Heuristic-Systematic Model (Chaiken & Trope, 1999) recognises that people either use heuristics and short-cuts to decide on important issues, or use a systematic mechanism that processes the merits and demerits of an argument. The Heuristic approach suggests that the decision-maker asks questions such as of ‘how do I feel about this issue?’ despite the recognition that such questions can cause problems of understanding and choice, particularly when the person facing the decision dilemma mixes up the cause and the effect of their emotions. In other words, the Heuristic-Systematic Model recognises that in any argument there are a number of variables that are conceptually independent of the message quality and which are likely to influence people to act or agree with the proposed idea. Dillard & Pfau (2002) state that that these variables are able to qualitatively differentiate information processing, and give people more room to negotiate with their thinking process.

It is important to recognise that people rarely process information in perfect conditions, because there are often environmental and cognitive constraints that tend to either limit the broadness of reasoning or curtail information processing. In this line of thought, people tend to process information economically; investing only in cognitive efforts when they feel motivated enough with a number of cognitive resources. In the prostitution decriminalisation debate, this can be said to affect that the way people reason, that is, arguments are likely to be based on strong environmental and cognitive influences entrenched by history, personal interest or fear, religious and cultural convictions. For instance, some arguments have emerged that prostitution should remain illegal because legalising it will mean women of loose morals will increasingly tempt men of good morals to increasingly betray their families. This kind of argument tends to make out that women who engage in prostitution are the villains. The other belief is that women who engage in prostitution should be protected from being hurt against: sexually transmitted diseases, unruly pimps, and exploitation. The other argument would only be based on religion and historical cultural practices that prohibits prostitution as a trade. The three lines of arguments are motivated by different lines of thought, which can fall in either heuristic or systematic message processing mechanism.

Ironically, the arguments against prostitution which include the view that women of loose morals prey upon upstanding men of good morals and lead them to betray their families has been accepted in some countries such as Sweden, which in 1999, criminalised the buying of sex but allowed individuals to continue selling it (Dillard & Pfau, 2002). Many proponents of this legislation argued that violence against prostituting in women is inherent, and that the best way was to reduce prostitution prevalence by limiting activities of the potential buyers. On the other hand, the State of Nevada, United States legalised prostitution to protect women from exploitation and abuse (Taleb, 2012).

The Heuristic- Systematic model posits that people generally process persuasive information systematically only when they are fully motivated. When one is in a systematic mode, they tend to take into consideration all relevant pieces of information, elaborately analyse the information, and make a judgment based on the elaborated issues. However, whenever people are not adequately motivated or do not possess sufficient cognitive resources, they often resort to processing of information heuristically or superficially. People in a heuristic mode of thinking consider only a few or a single informational cue and come up a judgment based on the cues.
Whilst decriminalising or legalising prostitution has attracted massive debate, its inability to pass the legislative hurdle or even attract attention of the political class has been overbearing for its proponents. In other words, legalising of sex trade has not been high amongst the priorities of many legislative agendas for many countries, including United Kingdom and United States (Taleb, 2012).

The reason why the Heuristic- Systematic model can work towards pushing for the legalisation of prostitution is because of its dualism nature, which allows the message to reach different classes of people. The goal here is to get support for legislation that would see prostitution decriminalised, and protect the parties involved. . Expert advice backed by research findings are powerful tool to convince legislators, who may not take their time to scrutinise the quality of persuasive arguments, and mostly prefer quick fixes in making decisions. Packaging a message heuristically can allow the legislators to pick the cue, and avoid the difficult process of differentiating a strong and a weak message (Griffin, 2006).

Reimer, et al (2004, p.81) observe that “people who expect to discuss a persuasion message later are more affected by the number of persuasive arguments but are never affected by the attractiveness of the communicator.” It is presumed that the importance of the message easily induce systematic processing of the message. By contrast, people who do not expect to discuss the message are often affected by how attractive the communicator is, and not affected by the number of persuasive arguments (Reimer, et al, 2004).
Studies have proven that motivational variables affect the mode in which people process persuasive arguments. These variables include personal relevance of the message, importance of the task, attitude accountability and exposure to a person’s attitude (Chaiken & Trope, 1999). On the other hand, there are cognitive resource variables that affect the mode of message processing, which includes distraction, repetition of the message, creating time pressure, and modality of communication, knowledge and expertise (Griffin, 2006). Although it is important to recognise these modes of communicating the message in terms of communicating the value of legalising prostitution, it should not appear as though there is any form of dissociation of the variables at the early stage of the group means (Griffin, 2006). Similarly, heuristically communicating the message should be able to have direct effects on the attitudes of the target group. In this aspect, when the people agree in a consensus that prostitution should be legalised, then it can be considered correct and valid for acceptance. An important factor which should be covered by any dual-process model is how the two processes interact or work together. Although one may argue that the two processes, heuristic and systematic are mutually exclusive or are competing concepts, in this case of legalising prostitution they should work together. The Heuristic-Systematic model posits that the two processes, heuristic and systematic, are indeed working simultaneously. Evidence of how these two processes can work is when arguments pitting two judgmental implications of both of them. For instance, an expert source delivering a message consisting of weak arguments can present a scenario where both systematic and heuristic processing of messages is done under different levels of motivation. It is also important to note that the heuristic-systematic model attenuates that wherever the two processes opposes each other, the implications the comes from systematic processing can “easily attenuate the impact of heuristic given that people are sufficiently motivated.” For example, Griffin, (2006).found out those highly motivated participants who were presented with consensus cue information that is inconsistent with the attributes singularly based their judgments on their own cognitive prowess in relation to the product attributes. This concept is applicable in the case of prostitution legalisation debate, in the sense that legislators can use their own cues and decide on the legislative agendas that will legalise commercial sex work.
Section 3: Evaluation Proposal
Evaluating heuristic- systematic model effectiveness is an important part of this model’s success towards ensuring the message to legalise prostitution is effectively passed. Effective communications needs evaluation, which helps to identify the impact of the efforts made in passing the message to the target audience.
To effectively monitor the communication model, various tools shall be used in the process.

Public opinion evaluation:

Getting the opinions of the public as far as legalising prostitution is concerned is an important point to start from. Public opinion monitoring tool will be used to ask the public if they heard about the campaign to legalise prostitution from opinion leaders including legislators and non-governmental organisations. In addition, the questions will be directed to ask the public whether they agree with the manner in which legislators in support of the prostitution presented their messages or agreed with them in the context and reasons given by the leaders. For example, questions such as: Whose arguments made sense in the call to legalise prostitutionAnd whyThe questionnaire trackers will be recorded in terms of age, gender, work status, tenacity. The methodology to be used will remain consistent over time to allow for the tracking of metrics over time for comparison purposes.

Evaluating media

Evaluating the media response on how effective the proposed model will work, the formal process for evaluating the impact of the campaign in the media is to analyse whether it can be replicated and made part of regular campaign mechanism.

Media Coverage Before Campaign (airtime/space) Coverage After Campaign (airtime/ space) % Increase in Coverage
BBC National News
BBC London
ITV National News
London Tonight
Evening Standard
Metro
Radio 4
Times

The table above will provide a guideline on how the media coverage has increased/ or decreased due to the campaign. This will be able to help bring depth to the understanding of our campaign, and if the media (both mainstream and tabloids) respond to increased debate. By monitoring how the media has changed the amount of airtime/ or newspaper coverage space in covering the legislative debates, it is possible to analyse the outcome of the campaign in ensuring the legislators continually discuss the possibility of decriminalising or legalising prostitution.
The media monitoring will be conducted by assistants on everyday basis, and compiled in a weekly report for tracking if there is any change in trends. Each article or piece of broadcast coverage will be allocated points based on the following criteria:
Positivity/negativity of the message (in favour of legalising prostitution): analysing the articles, opinions, newspaper columns and news coverage.
Positivity/ negativity of the headlines: positive mentions of the campaign groups, legislators; and
Neutrality of opinions reported
Finally, a range of stories will be typically evaluated and compiled on a daily basis, and tabulated on a weekly basis. Classification of stories will ensure the campaign program can be understood in the manner in which the media responds to the legislative debates, which is likely to translate into public debate as well.

References

Albarracin, D., Johnson, B. T., & Zanna, M. P. (2005). The handbook of attitudes.

Mahwah, N.J: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates Publishers

Chaiken, S., & Trope, Y. (1999). Dual-process theories in social psychology. New York: Guilford Press.

Dillard, J.P. & Pfau, M. (2002). The persuasion Handbook: Developments in Theory and Practice. NY: Sage Publications.

Griffin, E. A. (2006). A first look at communication theory (6th ed.). Boston, MA; McGraw Hill.

Reimer, T., Mata, R & Stoecklin, M. (2004). The use of Heuristics in Persuasion: Deriving Cues on Source Expertise from Argument Quality. In Current Research in Social Psychology, 10(6), 69-83.

Taleb, N. (2012). Antifragile: Things That Gain from Disorder. New York: Random House.

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How skilful communication influence patients’ health behaviours

Abstract

This essay analyses how skilful communication can influence the health behaviours of the patients. It looks at the importance of communication in healthcare and the different models of communication available to the healthcare personnel. These professionals need to decide on the model to use in order to ensure that they persuade the patients to change their health decisions by adhering to all the recommendations given to them

Introduction

Effective communication between healthcare personnel and the patients is important in clinical function as well as building a therapeutic relationship between them and the patients. Much of the dissatisfaction registered by patients and their failure to change their health behaviours are as a result of the breakdown of their relationship with the health care providers (Bryan 2009, p.75). However, many doctors often tend to overestimate their ability to effectively communicate with the patients thereby exacerbating the problem. Skilful communication and interpersonal skills encompasses the ability of healthcare professionals to gather information and use it to advise the patients appropriately with a view of influencing their health behaviours (Webb 2011, p. 57). This essay covers how skilful communication influences the health behaviour of patients.

Healthcare Communication

Communication is an important clinical skill that is very essential to clinical competence. The components of communication include non-verbal behaviours, listening and attending skills. All healthcare professionals need to understand the basic anatomy and physiology of communication (Bryan 2009, p. 66). They need to understand the variables that affect reception, processing and expression. A good comprehension of communication on delivery of healthcare is important in influencing health behaviour of the patients. They also need to understand the multicultural context in which the communication process occurs because it affects the manner in which the patients perceive the disseminated information. This should be in tandem with a good comprehension of therapeutic responses as they are significant in care management, increasing patient awareness and capacity for self-care and personal health management (Van 2009, p. 101).

Models of Healthcare Communication

Human beings often respond to illness and health differently, for instance some may choose to ignore or deny health threats while others face the threats by collecting the necessary information and acting accordingly and appropriately (Muller 2001, p. 88). There are different models designed to help understand the ways in which healthcare professionals interact with particular health outcomes. All these models contribute towards the successful understanding of communication in healthcare. These models are as follows: the therapeutic model, king’s interactive model, the developmental model, health belief model, health belief model for compliance, and the model for participative decision making (Jones & Jenkins 2007, p. 18). ). The therapeutic model puts emphasis on the importance of relationships in assisting the patients to adjust to their current conditions and take positive measures aimed at improving their health. The model emphasises on dyadic communication and the level of success is dependent on respect, trust, genuineness and non-judgemental attitude (Eisenberg 2012, p. 45).The healthy belief model explains how healthy people seek to avoid illnesses by outlining the nature of people’s preventative healthcare. The model is designed to indicate how personal health behaviours are influenced by perceived threats and benefits. It emphasises on perceptions and beliefs that can be modified to result in changed health behaviour. In this model communication is perceived as an essential tool for influencing the behaviour of the patients. The health belief model for compliance is an expansion of the health belief model and it includes the beliefs of patients that are already suffering from illnesses and have to comply with treatment. It aims at predicting compliance of patients to treatment to assist healthcare professionals in designing interventions to suit the needs of individual patients (Hugman 2009, p. 33). The King’s interaction model explains the communication between a nurse and a patient. It incorporates transactional aspects of human communication and the need for feedback. The model regards the trust between the nurse and the patient as vital in the effectiveness of the communication process. The model for participative decision making for patient doctor interaction postulates that when clients don’t get enough information from doctors or when there are communication barriers then they are likely to reject the treatment or decrease compliance (Eisenberg 2012, p.24). Therefore, the patients are supposed to be fully informed on their conditions and all the available options for treatment. The development model for health communication focuses on the communication occurring within the various relationships in healthcare settings. Its emphasis is on how different factors and contexts influence the interactions between different individuals in health communication. All the participants have their own perspectives based on their individual beliefs and values. These perspectives influence the choice of the participants to interact with the others and as such healthcare personnel must always have this in mind (Hugman 2009, p.71).

Importance of Skilful Communication as an Aspect of Care

In an attempt to show the importance of communication in healthcare delivery, it is apparent that communication and healthcare delivery are indivisible. Delivery of healthcare to the patients encompasses more than just the administration of drugs. Healthcare delivery has moved from the task oriented practice it was in the past towards a therapeutic process that involves a wide range of roles focused on the health of the individual patients, their health and wellbeing (Tamparo & Lindh 2008, p. 69). The therapeutic effect of good communication between healthcare professionals and patients on healthcare delivery cannot be ignored. Provision of social support to the patients reassures them and can even lower blood pressure. Patients regard the health professionals who communicate effectively at an emotional level as warm, caring and empathetic. This enables the patients to engender trust in them and encourages them to disclose worries and concerns that they would have otherwise not have disclosed. In addition to this, useful and informative communication between the healthcare professionals and the patients encourages them to take more interest in their condition, ask pertinent questions and develop greater understanding and self-care (Jones & Jenkins 2007, p.38). It is this interest and understanding of the importance of self-care that drives the patients to positively change their health behaviours. This happens especially when the patients are allowed to ask questions and are involved in treatment decisions. The patients also experience benefits when the health professionals provide a good environment, give accurate information, use therapeutic communication and encourage positive motivation (Nemeth 2008, p. 93). Therefore good communication in the relationship between healthcare professionals and patients is an important tool for therapeutic intervention as well as good care.

Basic communication skills alone are not sufficient to create and sustain successful therapeutic relationship between the patients and the healthcare providers. Successful therapeutic relationships are made up of shared perceptions and feelings on the nature of the problem, objectives of treatment and psychological support. Interpersonal skills develop from the basic communication between the doctors, nurses and other carers with the patients. Appropriate communication should be centred on both the carers and the patients as both sides are important in building and sustaining interpersonal relationships. The ultimate goal of any communication between the medical personnel and the patients is always to improve the health of the patients and medical care. Good communication skills are required for developing a high quality, effective and safe healthcare delivery. The skills are important for gathering information, diagnosis, treatment and educating the patients (Nemeth 2008, p.55). Effective communication benefits both the doctors and the patients because they are part of the treatment process.

Previous studies on communication between the patients and doctors and nurses demonstrate that many patients are discontented even when the doctors and nurses consider it sufficient or excellent (Pilnick et al 2010, p 47). This implies that doctors and nurses often tend to overestimate their communication abilities. Patient surveys consistently indicate that the want the communication between them and the healthcare personnel to be improved (Tamparo & Lindh 2008, p.88). In the past most of the medical personnel considered disclosing bad news to patients as inhumane and detrimental to their medical condition. However, medical practice has now evolved from paternalism to individualism and is now characterised by shared decision making and communication that is centred on the patients. Effective communication between the doctors and the patients is very important in clinical function because it plays a central role in healthcare delivery.

Perhaps the most significant importance of communication in influencing health behaviour of the patients stems from the fact that the nature of health care is changing from treatment of illnesses to management of chronic disease as more and more people are now living with survivable chronic illnesses (Van 2009, p.74). This implies that the healthcare professionals need to encourage the patients to take good care of their health. For instance the patients living with diabetes are required to manage their blood sugar levels. Quality of life is more important to healthcare as patients are now living longer with chronic illnesses like cancer and bipolar disorders. Therefore treatment choice is now more dependent on the individual patients and must suit their preferences, values and expectations.

Conclusion

Communication is an important tool that healthcare personnel can use to pass useful information to the patients. Well educated patients and their families need to be informed to make important health decisions in order to attain the aims of managed healthcare. Healthcare professionals need to disseminate relevant and persuasive information to the patients to help them change their health behaviours. They can rely on the models of healthcare communication to communicate to the patients based on their individual characteristics.

References

Bryan, K. (2009). Communication in healthcare. Oxford [England: Peter Lang.

Eisenberg, A. M. (2012). Prescriptive communication for the healthcare provider. S.l.: Trafford On Demand Pub.

Hugman, B. (2009). Healthcare communication. London: Pharmaceutical Press.

Jones, R., & Jenkins, F. (2007). Key topics in healthcare management: Understanding the big picture. Oxford: Radcliffe.

Muller, P. (2001). Healthcare communication: A rhetorical handbook. San Jose: Writers Club Press.

Nemeth, C. P. (2008). Improving healthcare team communication: Building on lessons from aviation and aerospace. Aldershot, England: Ashgate.

Pilnick, A., Hindmarsh, J., & Gill, V. T. (2010). Communication in Healthcare Settings: Policy, Participation and New Technologies. Chichester: John Wiley & Sons.

Tamparo, C. D., & Lindh, W. Q. (2008). Therapeutic communications for health care. Clifton Park, NY: Thomson Delmar Learning.

Van, S. G. M. (2009). Communication skills for the health care professional: Concepts, practice, and evidence. Sudbury, Mass: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.

Webb, L. (2011). Nursing: Communication skills in practice. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

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How Changes in Communication and Technology Affected the Role of the Modern Diplomat

Introduction

This brief aims to discuss how changes in communication and technology affected the role of the modern diplomat. A diplomat is one who is sent abroad to represent his own country to carry out diplomatic duties (Carta, 2012). Kopp and Gillespie (2011) gave a sardonic definition of a diplomat as “an honest man or woman who is sent to lie abroad to carry out certain tasks for the welfare of his/her country” (p. 3). This definition more or less shows the purpose of a diplomat’s work. Although written sardonically, the statement only conveys an atmosphere of suspicion that has always enveloped the diplomatic profession. The diplomat represents the interests of his own nation, seeking information that can provide an advantage to his government whilst being protected by international codes and regulations (Barker, 2011).

In order to clarify how communication and technological changes have affected the role of the modern diplomat, this brief will first discuss how the diplomat carried out his duties in the past, followed by how these duties and roles have changed now with the advent of such changes.

Overview of the Diplomat’s Role

A diplomat has certain roles to perform. He must serve as a trained theologian; he must be able to quickly solve the most complex problems in correct dialectical shape, and must be a specialist in civil and canon law, amongst other relevant fields. He has several functions, such as negotiating serious and/or secret agreements, and some of these negotiations aim to prevent the occurrence of wars, while some others provoke such occurrence (Shaw, 2006). The diplomat is sent on a mission where he must represent the sending state and protect its interests in the receiving government. He reports what occurs in the receiving state and fosters friendly relations. Part of his role is to generate diplomatic documents. These documents engender the greatest amount of information about international relations (Jonsson and Hall, 2002). There are also customary functions that he must carry out with the receiving state (Aust, 2005), such as trade promotion cooperation, matters relating to economic, defence, cultural, and scientific concerns, and those relating to terrorism, human trafficking, drug trafficking, and other related issues. Diplomacy is the sort of thing that a nation cannot manage to lose; to the point that even the poorest country would make an effort to afford a modest diplomatic corps (Singh, 2002).

Accordingly, when a diplomat pursues a consular function, this task is in keeping with the Vienna Consular Convention and does not forego his diplomatic immunities and privileges. This point is important to stress here since there are some overlapping functions that may take place between consular and diplomatic works, specifically in protecting one’s nationals, given that the consul has limited immunities and privileges compared to the diplomat (Aust, 2005). Performing consular work is part of the role of the diplomat, which is necessary to mention when considering changes in communication and technology. This is because such changes have in one way or another eased up the overlapping functions due to the speedier processes entailed in carrying them out.

How changes in communication and technology affected the role of the modern diplomat

The role of the modern diplomat has been greatly affected by changes in communication and technology. The rapid means of communication and transportation has diminished the importance of the modern diplomat. Prior to these developments, the diplomat was allowed considerable discretion in how he dealt with matters that arise on short notice. This is because of the lengthy time it took to communicate with his home government, given the limited available communication channels (Jonsson and Hall, 2002). With the absence of a previous position of his government, it was the diplomat who shaped policy; he was given enough leeway even in the implementation of policies developed in his country. In the past, the diplomat had the opportunity to avoid making decisions by doing nothing due to the slowness of events. During World War II, state leaders did not bother the diplomat (i.e. ambassador) for important things. They could not also telephone or correspond directly to one another (Singh, 2002). The limitation posed by the then not-so-advanced technology has set this kind of environment.

Today, the modern conditions characterised by speedy exchange of information paved the way for the disappearance of this opportunity (Batora, 2008). Through mobile devices, internet technology, and other similar devices, the modern diplomat can be instructed conveniently and rapidly on what position he is to take, what he is to say, etc. The advancement of technology has enabled the foreign office to direct and follow almost every detail of negotiations. In similar fashion, national leaders and foreign ministers have enabled themselves to communicate directly in as much as the diplomat is able to communicate to his home government as occasioned by advanced communication technologies. Early technological developments escorted the improvement in air travel, which affected the role of the diplomat. They would often see themselves shunted aside by the sorties that their bosses (presidents and prime ministers) performed in relation to improved air travel, where these chief executives could now afford to visit various foreign countries, including their diplomats’ own posts (Singh, 2002).

If analysed carefully, one would surmise that the surge in communication and technology has in fact made the whole process of information sharing more rapid and convenient. This would affect the pace and speed in which the home country responds to certain information that reaches its hands. On a positive light, the diplomat is in fact aided by these information channels when relating new information to his government (Cornago, 2013). Members of the media, who in the past had difficulty accessing a foreign country due to limited air travel, have also in effect helped the diplomat in relating news stories that he may have set aside; thereby not putting all the burden of information dissemination on his shoulders. It is like providing the diplomat the opportunity to focus on more important details of his job, such as promoting friendly relations with other nations, performing negotiations, etc. Information dissemination would then become a limited area of his duties as the media enters into the scene in a very active fashion.

In Gilboa’s (2000) article, changes in communication has affected the role of the diplomat in such a way that the media is now playing an important role in contemporary diplomacy, a role that it did not use to play prior to these changes. Officials and journalists often utilise the media extensively to promote negotiations. The media thus play an active part in contemporary diplomatic processes, which only the diplomat used to undertake prior to all those changes in communication and technology.

As social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook continue to serve as a fresh source of information for political events, diplomats are being encouraged to use social media as a regular part of their jobs to participate directly in political discussions (Paris, 2013). If one wants the latest political news, he needs only to read blogs, follow Twitter, or watch YouTube (Cooper, et al., 2013). Gone are the days that a nation would wait for the diplomat to relate the official information about similar events. Hence, it may be inferred that the enhanced complexity of information flows in diplomatic processes, amongst others, has bridged geographic distances (Batora and Hocking, 2007).

The effects of technology are greatly far-reaching so as to transform diplomacy, which is being reinvented gradually for the information age. Through available technology, diplomacy can enable physical presence in a virtual fashion (Batora, 2008). The United States and the UK have already taken this big stride to digital diplomacy. Those lagging behind are seen to lose influence over time albeit their engagement in private diplomatic communication. Canada lags far behind US and UK although it has recently displayed little interest in utilising social media in its diplomatic functions (Paris, 2013).

There are more positive effects of changes in communication and technology in the role of the diplomat. With the advent of globalisation comes the so-called globalisation of international relations (Lawson, 2002), suggesting new important diplomatic functions due to an increasing awareness about the idea that global problems necessitate global solutions, thereby expanding the scope of the diplomat’s role from merely representing his country. It is worthy of note that globalisation will allow the diplomat to operate in the future at the bilateral and multilateral levels, and the advancing communications technology is seen to conveniently aid such operation by the diplomat (Copeland, 2009). With the aid of changes in communication technologies, diplomats have been transformed as ‘globalisation managers’ who are charged with managing the ‘global village’ (Lawson, 2002). The advancing communication technologies enable the diplomat to perform his duties speedily, which can likewise permit him to respond to various issues right away, such as international terrorism, drug trafficking, and climate change, to name a few.

The abounding information, which may be verifiable or not and can be readily accessed anytime and anywhere is marshaled by modern means of communication. The modern diplomat has now a genuine task of inspecting and analysing the content and credibility of all available data and opinions, putting these data in a broader and more profound political context. This can then provide a suitable guideline for decisions by the diplomat’s home country (Bolewski, 2007). It therefore proves to show that despite the information age in which the modern diplomat functions and in the midst of the available information, the diplomat’s task is to screen this information in terms of truthfulness and credibility. He must not use such information right away in his diplomatic decisions but must scrutinise them instead.

Not only do changes in communication and technology expedite the diplomatic process, but they also provide the necessary information to the diplomat as well. It is therefore apparent that structural changes have taken place in the diplomatic environment due to technology and modern means of communication. The acknowledgement of the value of the media to his tasks is considered one of the ways in which changes in communication and technology have affected the role of the modern diplomat. Cooper et al. (2013) even claimed that today’s emphasis in diplomatic work is much more on interaction with the media and language ability, putting a decline to the written skills of the diplomat. Cooper et al. do not however mean this literally, but what they are pointing out is that the media have played an important role in the diplomatic process, to the point that the diplomat must consider interaction with them part of his routine.

It must be noted that negotiations and diplomatic missions are two main areas of diplomacy which have been considerably influenced by technology. Virtual negotiations now take place amongst diplomats, in which they reach certain commitments and agreements electronically, such as through voice conversation, video conferencing, and exchange of emails and faxes. Virtual diplomatic missions and virtual Ministries of Foreign Affairs contribute to enhancing negotiators’ investigative power as they continuously search for information (Batora, 2008). This setting is helpful for diplomats who are engaged in other processes or events and can save themselves so much time and trouble travelling. It also allows poor countries to save much money in travelling since e-negotiations are cost effective. Thus, a diplomat can participate in multiple negotiations and other events that occur simultaneously in geographically dispersed locations (Grech, 2006).

On a separate note, this can bring certain risks, such as lack of face-to-face interpersonal relations with fellow diplomats, increased participation expectancy by citizens, susceptibility to attacks, misreading of information, loss of credibility, lack of identity verification in online presence, and delicate maintenance (Grech, 2006). These threats are brought by the online nature of virtual diplomatic missions. The injection of communication technologies in diplomacy has corresponding negative repercussions such as those mentioned because virtual diplomatic missions cannot trade the culture delivered by a physical relationship in an embassy or consulate. Since human factor is of high value to diplomacy, changes in technology will not change the importance placed by the diplomat on personal contacts, feedback mechanisms, and human experience, which all characterise diplomatic procedures (Aneek, 2010).

In a virtual diplomatic setting, the diplomat is in fact deprived of developing relationships with fellow diplomats and the citizens, and such deprivation could be unfavourable to certain diplomatic functions such as developing bilateral relations and negotiations. Since interpersonal relations are lacking in virtual diplomacy, it would be difficult to verify identity in this fashion and illegitimate users may exploit this service, leading to adverse results. Increased vulnerability to attacks therefore puts the virtual diplomacy in a detrimental situation. Added complexity is thus required since special care must be warranted to ensure clearness and ease of understanding of site navigation . On a similar note, delicate maintenance of mission websites is essential, which a subject specialist must ensure. This subject specialist must be a diplomat also since only a diplomat has the best understanding of the nature and context of information (Grech, 2006).

There is also a threat to misinterpret information available in diplomatic mission websites because of the text-based nature of information, which can cause confusion than when such information is presented on a face-to-face basis where diplomats can have an open discussion and active deliberation (Grech, 2006).

Conclusion

This paper tackles the role of the modern diplomat alongside changes in communication and technology. The diplomat is sent by the home government to a receiving government for purposes of performing certain duties in behalf of the home country. Diplomacy is a process that every nation must carry out in its international relations activities.

In the past, a diplomat was tasked to relate news and information in the country where he was posted, and such information can aid his own government in designing certain decisions. This has changed now however; first, due to availability of air travel, and second, because of the prevalence of communication technologies that can enable speedier transmission of information. The modern diplomat no longer holds the banner of bringing news stories and information to his own country since he is outdone by the media in this department. However, he is not involved in a rat race with the media; instead, his daily activities include interacting with the media who aid him in conveying necessary information to the home government and to the world. In the past, he did not incorporate the media to his daily activities.

Globalisation, a phenomenon aided by advances in communication technologies, affects the way the modern diplomat performs his role. Alongside ease in communication and information, his role is now seen to expand bilaterally and multilaterally as he faces global issues in his task to manage the global village.

The threats posed by changes in communication and technology in the role of the modern diplomat and his adoption of virtual diplomacy are increased participation expectancy by citizens, susceptibility to attacks, misreading of information, loss of credibility, lack of identity verification in online presence, and delicate maintenance.

References

Aneek, C. (2010). International Relations Today: Concepts and Applications. New Delhi: Dorling Kindersley Pvt. Ltd.

Aust, SA. (2005). Handbook of International Law. UK: Cambridge University Press.

Barker, J. C. (2011). The Protection of Diplomatic Personnel. England: Ashgate Publishing Ltd.

Batora, J. (2008). Foreign Ministries and the Information Revolution: Going VirtualBoston: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers.

Batora, J. and Hocking, B. (2007). Bilateral Diplomacy in the European Union: Towards ‘Post-Modern’ PatternsECPR/SGIR 6th Pan-European Conference: Turin 12-15 September.

Bolewski, W. (2007). Diplomacy and International Law in Globalized Relations. New York: Springer.

Carta, C. (2012). The European Union Diplomatic Service: Ideas, Preferences and Identities. Oxon: Routledge.

Cooper, A. F., Heine, J., and Thakur, R. (2013). The Oxford Handbook of Modern Diplomacy. Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.

Copeland, D. (2009). Guerilla Diplomacy: Rethinking International Relations. US: Lynne Rienner Publishing.

Cornago, N. (2013). Plural Diplomacies: Normative Predicaments and Functional Imperatives. The Netherlands: Koniklije Brill NV, Leiden.

Gilboa, E. (2000). Mass Communication and Diplomacy: A Theoretical Framework. Communication Theory, 10 (3), 275-309.

Grech, O. M. (2006). Virtual Diplomacy: Diplomacy of the Digital Age [Published Dissertation]. Malta: Faculty of Arts, University of Malta.

Jonsson, C. and Hall, M. (2002) .Communication: An Essential Aspect of Diplomacy. 43rd Annual ISA Convention, New Orleans, LA, March 23-27.

Kopp, H. W. and Gillespie, C. A. (2011). Career Diplomacy: Life and Work in the US Foreign Service. US: Georgetown University Press.

Lawson, S. (2002). The New Agenda for International Relations. Cambridge, UK: The Polity Press.

Paris, R. (2013). The Digital Diplomacy Revolution: Why Canada is Lagging BehindRetrieved on March 19, 2014 from http://opencanada.org/features/the-think-tank/essays/the-digital-diplomacy-revolution/

Shaw, J. (2006). The Ambassador: Inside the Life of a Working Diplomat. Virginia: Capital Books, Inc.

Singh, N. N. (2002). Diplomacy for the 21st Century. New Delhi: Naurang Rai for Mittal Publications.

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Developing Communication and Interpersonal Skills: Continuing Professional Development ?

Introduction

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has set out at least four domains of competencies for entry to the register in Adult Nursing. In this brief, I will focus on the second domain of communication and interpersonal skills. Communication plays a crucial role in addressing the needs of the patients. Adult nurses are expected to communicate effectively, listen with empathy and advocate for their patients (Department of Health, 2012a, 2012b). Specifically, the Department of Health (Commissioning Board Chief Nursing Officer and DH Chief Nursing Adviser, 2012) has introduced the 6 Cs of nursing, which encompasses compassion in nursing practice. Compassion in care is only possible when patients feel that their nurses understand their feelings and show empathy (Chambers and Ryder, 2009). Communication is essential in helping patients articulate their needs (Hall, 2005). Similarly, poor communication could result to misunderstanding, anxiety for the patients and poor quality of care (Chambers and Ryder, 2009).

In this brief I will focus on the domain of communication and interpersonal skills since these form the foundation of my relationships with my patients. Developing my competency in this domain would help me identify both verbal and non-verbal messages of the patients and address their needs accordingly. Meanwhile, effective communication is needed when I communicate with my colleagues and other healthcare practitioners. A focus on my communication skills with my patients will be made in this reflective brief. Communicating effectively with my patients and other health and social care professionals would help improve the care received by my patients. Benner’s (1984) stages of clinical competence would be used to underpin my development from novice to competent. Gibb’s (1988) reflective model will be utilised to reflect on my experiences in the last three years from novice to competent.

Professional Development from Novice to Competent Level
Reflective practice (Gibbs, 1988) allows healthcare practitioners to improve current practice by learning from incidents and one’s own experiences. Pearson et al. (2009) explains that one’s own experiences are another form of evidence in healthcare. With the focus on patient-centred care, the NHS (Department of Health, 2012b) has encouraged evidence-based care when addressing the needs of the patients. I will use Gibbs (1988) model in reflecting on my communication experiences in years 1 to 3. This model starts with a description of an incident followed by analysis, evaluation, conclusion and action plan.

An incident during my year 1 exemplifies how I developed my communication and interpersonal skills as a novice. I was assigned to the mental health ward and assisted an elderly patient with dementia who was admitted for pneumonia. During his first day in the hospital, my senior nurse performed a nutritional assessment and informed me that I should assist the patient during feeding time. This was consistent with the Patient Mealtime Initiative (PMI) (NHS, 2007) implemented in our ward. As a student nurse, I would be assist the patient to self-feed and make his environment comfortable and uncluttered. During mealtime, I talked to the patient and informed him that I would assist him in eating his food. He stared at the wall and did not respond. I gently asked him if he was ready to eat. When he turned to me, I informed him that he could now start eating. He only stared at his food and did not seem to understand my instructions. I placed the utensils near his hand so he could grab it and eat. When he did not respond, I asked him if he wanted me to help him eat. After a few minutes, he got his spoon and held it for a few minutes. I began to realise that he did not seem to understand my instructions so I started to place the spoon with food in his mouth and gently touched his chin to remind him to chew his food. My senior nurse passed by and informed that I have to put some pressure on the patient’s chin and make some chewing motions to help remind him that he needs to chew his food. It took me an hour to feed my patient.

On reflection, communicating with older patients with dementia could be a challenge. Most of these patients suffer from cognitive impairments, which make it difficult for them to communicate their feelings and concerns (NICE, 2006). A significant number of older patients with dementia who are admitted in hospital wards are underweight (World Health Organization, 2014). Jensen et al. (2010) explain that many of these patients have forgotten how to eat and chew their food while others lack cognitive abilities in understanding instructions on feeding. Hence, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE, 2006) guideline on nutrition for older patients highlights the importance of assisting the patients during feeding. For patients in the advanced stages of dementia, the main aim of nutrition is to maintain hydration and comfort feeding. Meanwhile, some patients could also suffer from swallowing problems, making it more difficult to ingest food (Lin et al., 2010).

The hospital ward environment is also new to older patients with dementia and might trigger anxiety and fear (Lin et al., 2010). Since patients are in unfamiliar surroundings with unfamiliar people, they might express their fears and anxieties through aversive behaviours (NICE, 2006). It is shown that nurses react negatively to aversive behaviours of older patients with dementia (Jensen et al., 2010). On reflection, the incident taught me to be more patient and to understand both verbal and non-verbal messages. It took some time for me to realise that I have to feed the patient since he appeared confused. I was also unprepared on how to communicate with an older patient with dementia. As a novice nurse, my feelings and apprehensions are normal and are also shared by other nurses (Cole, 2012; Murray, 2006). Best and Evans (2013) have shown that nurses feel unprepared to communicate and care for older patients with dementia. On reflection, I should continue with my professional development by joining training and seminar on how to communicate with older patients with dementia and address their nutritional needs. When faced with a similar situation in the future, I am better prepared and would not need more supervision from senior nurses on how to communicate with older patients with dementia and address their needs. For instance, I am now aware that these patients have difficulty verbalising their needs and I have to be sensitive of non-verbal cues and interpret aversive behaviour as possible signs of distress, anxiety or fear (Best and Evans, 2013).

The second incident occurred during year 2 in my placement in the Urology Department. At this stage, I already considered myself as an advanced beginner (Benner, 1984). I was assigned to care for a 45-year old male patient who was admitted due to testicular pain. I introduced myself to the patient and informed him that I was part of a team that would be caring for him during his hospital admission. I noticed that he was uncomfortable communicating with a student nurse and asked for a more senior nurse. I gently informed him that my senior nurse was supervising other student nurses and he was left to my care. I tried to communicate and noticed that he had difficulty with the English language. I asked him if he needed a language interpreter. Once an interpreter was identified and assisted me with communicating with my patient, I noticed a change in his behaviour. He began to open up and was willing to take his prescribed medications. I slowly understood that he was anxious about his condition and wanted a male nurse with the same ethnic background to be his nurse. When he realised that most of the nursing staff are composed of female nurses, he began to accept me as his nurse.

On reflection, this incident illustrates the importance of taking into account individual differences and using communication strategies to understand the patient’s needs. Specifically, I became aware that he had difficulty with the English language. The act of getting an interpreter greatly improved our communication. One of the competencies stated under communication states that nurses should be able to use different communication strategies in order to identify and address the patient’s needs (Nursing and Midwifery Council, 2010; National Patient Safety Association, 2009). It was apparent that the patient was self-conscious that a female nurse was addressing his needs. It is shown that a patient’s perception about his condition is also influenced by their cultural beliefs and ethnicity (Department of Health, 2012b). He was uncomfortable that a female nurse was providing care when he was suffering from testicular pain. However, the patient shares similar ethnic background as the interpreter and only became comfortable when the interpreter assured him that he could trust me. I realised that patients with different cultural background could be anxious about their treatment and might have difficulty communicating.

On evaluation, I felt that I was able to address the immediate language barrier gap by getting an interpreter to help me communicate with the patient. My experiences during my first year in placement with patients who have different ethnic backgrounds and have difficulty expressing themselves in English helped me prepare for this situation. As Benner (1984) stated, nurses develop competency through experiences. I felt that I have improved on my communication skills and have achieved the advanced beginner level during year 2. Being sensitive to the communication needs of my patient is also consistent with the 6 Cs of nursing (Commissioning Board Chief Nursing Officer and DH Chief Nursing Adviser). In this policy paper, nurses are encouraged to show compassion in caring through effective communication.

On analysis, I could have improved my communication skills by learning how to communicate with patients with different cultural beliefs about human sexuality. The patient was shy that a female nurse is part of the healthcare team managing his testicular pain. As part of my professional development and action plan, I will participate in training and seminars on how to communicate about health issues, such as testicular pain, that are considered sensitive and may carry some cultural taboo.

The third incident happened during year 3, in my placement in the surgical ward for orthopaedic patients. At this stage, my previous experiences in communicating with patients during year 1 and 2 have helped me develop important communication skills. These included recognising non-verbal messages, understanding how culture influences my patients’ perceptions of nurses and the care they receive. Culture plays a crucial role in how patients place meanings on the words and symbols I use when communicating (Funnell et al., 2009). Apart from culture, I realised that the patient’s own perceptions of the illness and pain they are experiencing could also influence the quality of our communication.

In the incident, I was assigned to assess the level of post-operative pain of a patient after surgical operation. He was a 32-year old male and was unable to communicate even after four hours of surgery. I tried to communicate with him to help assess his level of pain. Since he could not verbalise his level of pain, I used the visual analogue scale (VAS) to identify the level of pain. On analysis, I felt that I have done the right thing and have fulfilled one of the competencies under the domain of communication. Specifically, the NMC (2010) states that nurses should be able to use different communication strategies to support patient-centred care. The use of the VAS helped the patient articulate his level of pain. The VAS is often used as a tool in healthcare practice when assessing the patient’s level of pain. This tool is reliable and has been validated in different settings (Fadaizadeh et al., 2009). On analysis, my personal experiences in the last three years helped me become acquainted with current guidelines on pain assessment. It also helped me identify a simple but valid and reliable tool in assessing patient’s level of pain.

Pain perception in post-operative patients is highly subjective and could be influenced by several factors (Gagliese and Katz, 2003). These include age, gender, prior pain experience, medications and culture (Lavernia et al., 2011; Grinstein-Cohen et al., 2009; Gagliese and Katz, 2003). Regardless of the factors that influence pain, nurses should be able to assess the patient’s pain accurately and communicate with the patient strategies on how to control pain (Clancy et al., 2005). Hence, communication is crucial in ensuring quality post-operative care. On reflection, I was aware that the patient has difficulty communicating. Hence, choosing a more complex tool in assessing pain could add to more distress and anxiety for the patient (Gagliese and Katz, 2003). I realised that choosing a simple assessment tool helped calm down the patient since I was able to deliver care appropriately.

On reflection, I would follow similar procedures in the future. However, I would improve my knowledge on pain assessment by participating in pain education nursing classes in university or in the hospital where I am assigned. This would form part of my continuing professional development and action plan. Abdalrahim et al. (2011) argue that nurses with high knowledge on patient education are more likely to accurately assess patient pain, leading to earlier relief and management of the patient’s pain. However, Francis and Fitzpatrick (2013) express that despite high levels of knowledge on pain management, there are some nurses who have difficulty translating this knowledge into actual practice. One of my roles as a nurse in an orthopaedic surgical ward is to manage post-operative pain of my patients. Failing to manage pain could lead to chronic pain, longer hospital stays and poorer health outcomes (Grinstein-Cohen et al., 2009). I also realised that effective communication with patients is needed to ensure that the patient’s needs are addressed.

Conclusion

In conclusion, the three incidents portrayed in this reflective brief demonstrate how I evolved as a nurse practitioner from novice to competent. Specifically, my communication skills have developed from year 1 until Year 3. In the first incident, I had difficulty communicating with older patients with dementia. Beginner nurse practitioners have no experience in the situations they find themselves in. This was true in my experience with the older patient with dementia. It was my first time at communicating with a patient with cognitive impairment and feeding him. I lacked confidence in carrying out the task and only improved after several meetings with the client. However, in year 2, my communication skills improved. For instance, I was able to immediately identify the needs of the patients by depending on verbal cues and non-verbal messages of the client. I was able to get an interpreter and communicate with him. However, I also realised that I still need to improve by participating in classes and training on how to communicate effectively with patients with different ethnic background.

Finally, in year 3, I was now more competent in communicating with patients. Even when the patient in post-operative care could not communicate, I was aware that he was in pain. I was also able to use an appropriate assessment tool that is consistent with the guidelines in our hospital. I realised that I possess more confidence in communicating with the patient and identifying his needs. My previous experiences in communicating with different groups of patients helped me become competent in identifying the needs of the patients. Importantly, care was delivered promptly since I was able to appropriately assess the level of pain of the patient. All these three experiences show that I could hone my skills in communication. My communication experiences in nursing will help me become more competent and ready as a future nurse registrant.

References

Abdalrahim, M., Majali, S., Stomberg, M. & Bergbom, I. (2011) ‘The effect of postoperative pain management program on improving nurses’ knowledge and attitudes toward pain’, Nurse Education in Practice, 11(4), pp. 250-255.

Benner, P. (1984) From Novice to Expert: Excellence and power in clinical nursing practice, Menlo Park: Addison-Wesley.

Best, C. & Evans, L. (2013) ‘Identification and management of patients’ nutritional needs’, Nursing Older People, 25(3), pp. 303-6.

Chambers, C. & Ryder, E. (2009) Compassion and caring in nursing, London: Radcliffe Publishing.

Clancy, C., Farquhar, M. & Sharp, B. (2005) ‘Patient safety in nursing practice’, Journal of Nursing Care Quality, 20(3), pp. 193-197.

Cole, D. (2012) ‘Optimising nutrition for older people with dementia’, Nursing Standard, 26(20), pp. 41-48.

Commissioning Board Chief Nursing Officer and DH Chief Nursing Adviser (2012) Compassion in Practice, London: Department of Health.

Department of Health (2012a) The Power of Information, London: Department of Health.

Department of Health (2012b) Bringing clarity to quality in care and support, London: Department of Health.

Fadaizadeh, L., Emami, H. & Samii, K. (2009) ‘Comparison of visual analogue scale and faces rating in measuring acute postoperative pain’, Archives of Iranian Medicine, 12(1), pp. 73-75.

Francis, L. and Fitzpatrick, J. (2013) ‘Postoperative pain: Nurses’ knowledge and patients’ experiences’, Pain Management Nursing, 14(4), pp. 351-357.

Funnell, R., Koutoukidis, G., and Lawrence, K. (2009) Tabbner’s nursing care: Theory and practice, 5th Edition, Chatswood, London: Elsevier.
Gagliese, L. and Katz, J. (2003) ‘Age differences in postoperative pain are scale dependent: a comparison of measures of pain intensity and quality in younger and older surgical patients’, Pain, 103(1-2), pp.11-20.

Gibbs, G. (1988) Learning by doing: A guide to teaching and learning methods, Oxford: Further Educational Unit, Oxford Polytechnic.

Grinstein-Cohen, O., Sarid, O., Attar, D., Pilpel, D. and Elhayany, E. (2009) ‘Improvements and Difficulties in Postoperative Pain Management’, Orthopaedic Nursing, 28(5), pp. 232-239.
Hall, L. (2005) Quality work environments for nurse and patient safety, London: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Jensen, G., Mirtallo, J., Compher, C., Dhaliwal, R., Forbes, A., Grijalba, R., Hardy, G., Kondrup, J., Labadarios, D., Nyulasi, I., Castillo Pineda, J. & Waitzberg, D. (2010) ‘Adult starvation and disease-related malnutrition: a proposal for etiology-based diagnosis in the clinical practice setting from the International Consensus Guideline Committee’, Journal of Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition, 34(2), pp. 156-159.

Lavernia, C., Alcerro, J., Contreras, J. & Rossi, M. (2011) ‘Ethnic and racial factors influencing well-being, perceived pain, and physical function after primary total joint arthroplasty’, Clinical Orthopaedic and Related Research, 469(7), pp. 1838-1845.

Lin, L., Watson, R. & Wu, S. (2010) ‘What is associated with low food intake in older people with dementia?’, Journal of Clinical Nursing, 19(1-2), pp. 53-59.

Murray, C. (2006) ‘Improving nutrition for older people’, Nursing Older People, Vol. 18, No. 6, pp. 18-22.

National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) (2006) Nutrition support in adults: oral nutrition support, enteral tube feeding and parenteral nutrition. London: NICE.

National Patient Safety Association (2009) Being open: communicating patient safety incident with patients, their families and carers, London: NPSA.

NHS (2007) Protected mealtimes review: Findings and recommendations report, London: NHS.

Nursing and Midwifery Council (2010) Standards for pre-registration Nursing education, London: NMC.

Pearson, A., Field, J., Jordan, Z. (2009) Evidence-Based Clinical Practice in Nursing and health Care. Assimilating Research, Experience and Expertise. Oxford. Blackwell Publishing.

World Health Organization (2014) Nutrition for older persons [Online]. Available from: http://www.who.int/nutrition/topics/ageing/en/index1.html (Accessed: 1 February, 2014).

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Non-Verbal Communications to Clinch a Job Interview

Individuals communicate not through words alone, but through non-verbal communications, cues and messages transmitted, usually through body language and facial expressions. A great deal of meaning is conveyed by non-verbal means of communication, and when integrated with effective verbal language, can better convey or stress the intended message.

Non-verbal communications, though, tends to be overlooked by many people, especially during crucial moments, like a job interview. It must be remembered that the various types of non-verbal communications have a significant impact on the communication process and play a critical part in successful business communications, as they complement oral discourse in today’s dynamic workplaces and other milieus.

Non-Verbal Communications to Clinch a Job Interview

Conveying a positive message with the right non-verbal cues can spell a great difference in jumpstarting a person’s career, ensuring a smooth and successful career path, and in effectively dealing with others, in general.

Five of the most common ways whereby non-verbal messages can be utilized in favor of a person being interviewed for a supervisory position in a business organization are: physical appearance, both of the written message and the individual; body language; space or territoriality; and time.  The physical appearance of written messages, like a job applicant’s cover letter and resume, must follow the formal principles of style, correct grammar and spelling, in professional format and clean printout.  A person’s physical characteristics, likewise, must impart an overall professional look.

When applying for a job interview, the person must be punctual and be well-groomed, clean, attractive and well-dressed, but not overdone nor dressed inappropriately. Clothes that fit well, are clean and neatly pressed contribute to a smart aura and show that a person cares enough to look professional on the job.  Clothes can communicate economic status, current occupation, and values, so care in choosing the right key pieces to wear can elicit favorable feedback from others. Postural non-verbal communication will also heighten a good impression, especially during job interviews.

A person’s body orientation, arm and leg positions, and general sitting posture can send signals of being at ease, confident, or ready for challenges. Job applicants will do well not to fidget and not to avoid eye contact, lest they be seen as nervous or insecure, and to refrain from making defensive postures as crossed arms and legs that may convey a closed attitude. Occasional nodding, keeping the head up, and using the hands confidently to stress a point may be fine.

Cheerful, not exaggerated facial expressions and gestures, like a firm handshake, plus an overall good attitude, may be used to display sincerity, confidence and respect for a position (“Nonverbal Communication,” 1998). In terms of communicating messages through space, individuals must keep a slight distance from job interviewers — and later on from higher-ups — to signify respect for, rather than an invasion of, their personal space.  Not standing too close when speaking to superiors also signifies respect for their status in the organization.

Last but not the least, a job applicant up for a supervisory position must make optimum use of the time spent with the interviewer, which in some way reflects the applicant’s time management skill.  It may also be regarded as a sign that he may not tend to cram work, nor be too exhausted to assume work priorities.  After all, only when a person has time for himself and others can he truly be at his best or most productive.

Reference

College of DuPage (1998, May 27). Types of Nonverbal Communication. In Communication    (¶ 11). Retrieved March 7, 2008 from http://www.cod.edu/Course/MGT100?mgtcomm.htm

 

 

 

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Integrated Marketing Communications Plan

INTEGRATED MARKETING COMMUNICATIONS PLAN A. ADVERTISING Advertising refers to the paid promotion of goods and services through a sponsoring organization or company. While marketing has the objective to choose markets that have the capacity to purchase a product,  advertising, on the other hand, is the paid communication through which relevant information about the product is conveyed to potential consumers (2001). In a general sense, the author plans to use advertising in order to be able to impart to interested Christian women aged 13-45 the availability of slots in the Virtuous Woman Pageant.

In a way, advertising will also be able to provide critical information regarding the Virtuous Woman Pageant. The author believes that when the advertising campaign for the Virtuous Woman Pageant is achieved effectively, this can lead to an increased interest for Christian women to join the pageant. There are commonly three main objectives of advertisements: (1) conveying relevant information regarding a particular product or service; (2) persuading consumers to purchase the advertised product; and, (3) keep the company under the watchful eyes of the public (2002).

But in this particular case, the author plans to mix the elements of all three objectives. Since the Virtuous Woman Pageant is a relatively new event, then it must be supported with informative and persuasive ads. Evaluation of Advertising 1) Advantages The existence of Internet and the continued revolution in the world of Information Technology are certainly positive signs for the successful advertising campaign for the Virtuous Woman Pageant. For instance, the author plans to use Popup ads and email ads as a form of online advertisement. ) Disadvantages In recent years, the public opinion regarding advertising has become very negative. They view it as a medium that only promotes lies. This is of course contrary to the purpose of advertisements to encourage the target market to patronize a particular product or service. Nowadays, most advertisements are either perceived as merely stating opinions or portraying a product or service in a totally distorted idea away from reality. It is his alarming situation regarding the true objectives of advertising that could lead to an increase in the responsibilities that the author and the organizers of the Virtuous Woman Pageant would face. B. PUBLICITY Publicity is a term that is closely related to public relations. While public relations refers to the proper management of all means of communication among the companies and the people involved, publicity, on the other hand, is the careful management of a product or service’s means of communication between the company and the general public. Therefore, it is basically an informative process.

However, its main objective is the promotion of products and services being offered by a company. Thus, a publicity plan is being made along the process in order to obtain excellent press coverage for the company’s products (2003). The author and the organizers plan to issue a press release regarding the launching of the Virtuous Woman Pageant, but other methods including Internet releases are in the author’s options. However, in order for these tools and techniques to be effectively utilized by the media, they must be able to generate a great interest from the public.

For this to happen, the author and the organizers of the Virtuous Woman Pageant plans to manipulate the press release in order to be a perfect match to the Christian women. The author believes that the most successful publicity releases are often related to topics that the general public can easily relate to. Evaluation of Publicity 1) Advantages The advantages of publicity include having low costs, and its credibility. New technologies such as web cameras and convergence are gradually changing the cost-structure. ) Disadvantages The disadvantages include the lack of control over how the releases will be used, and the accumulation of frustration regarding the low percentage of releases that are being accepted by the media. C. PERSONAL SELLING Sales are an important part of any commercial transaction. The most common approach to personal selling pertains to a systematic process of continuous yet measurable methods in which the person selling describes his offered products or services in such a way that the buyer will be able to visualize ow to benefit from the offered products or services in an economic way. Selling is basically a part of the implementation procedures of marketing. It often forms a particular grouping within a corporate structure, employing independent specialist operatives known as salesmen (2003). The continued interrogation in order to understand a consumer’s goal as well as the establishment of a set of feasible solutions by conveying the necessary information that convinces a buyer to achieve his goal at a reasonable cost is the main responsibility of the sales person.

On the other hand, the main objective of professional sales is to be able to know the needs and satisfy the wants of consumers effectively, and therefore convert possible customers into actual and reliable ones (2002). Evaluation of Personal Selling 1) Advantages Some of the distinct advantages that the author sees in the use of personal selling as an IMC tool for the Virtuous Woman Pageant include the immediate access to feedback, the persuasive nature of the endeavor, the option of choosing a target audience for the sales person, and its capability to give detailed information. ) Disadvantages Personal selling may have the tendency to become extremely expensive per exposure, and the gathered information may be different among the sales persons involved. It is a well-known fact that the main objective of selling is to help a consumer achieve his / her goals in a reasonable way. However, this is not always the case. For instance, Christian women can easily be persuaded by outside factors to join the Virtuous Woman Pageant that normally does not have any interest to them.

Some sales people are being commanded by their mother companies to sell to consumers odd products that they don’t necessarily need. This anomalous behavior is being supported by incentives of sales personnel to increase their total number of sales, incentives from the companies of service providers to sales personnel to sell their products where other similar products offered by competitors are offered, and the incentive to sell a consumer a product that is in need of being wiped out.

CONCLUSION The results of the analysis carried out on the proposed IMC tools that would be used for the Virtuous Woman Pageant indicated very significant effects, even amidst the threats of unrest. Therefore, we could conclude that the IMC tools could still be expected to contribute to the successful launching of the Virtuous Woman Pageant. The review of the capabilities and resources of the IMC tools revealed very little inconsistencies regarding the overall strategies.

This is coherent with the traditional inside-out approach. However, the need to reconcile both the inside-out and outside-in approaches becomes imperative now for the author and the organizers of the Virtuous Woman Pageant. The analysis among the environment as well as the capabilities of the IMC tools revealed certain gaps, most of which are biased towards the environment.

However, these gaps paved the way towards determining a number of recommended strategic options to secure the competitiveness of the IMC tools. Also, the author and the organizers of the Virtuous Woman Pageant has to find a balance between adherence to internal forces within the management and to the changing forces of the environment in order to implement such strategic options Read more: http://ivythesis. typepad. com/term_paper_topics/2009/11/integrated-marketing-communications-plan. html#ixzz29wJi0bUf

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Data and Computer Communications

DATA AND COMPUTER COMMUNICATIONS Eighth Edition William Stallings Upper Saddle River, New Jersey 07458 Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data on File Vice President and Editorial Director, ECS: Marcia J. Horton Executive Editor: Tracy Dunkelberger Assistant Editor: Carole Snyder Editorial Assistant: Christianna Lee Executive Managing Editor: Vince O’Brien Managing Editor: Camille Trentacoste Production Editor: Rose Kernan Director of Creative Services: Paul Belfanti Creative Director: Juan Lopez Cover Designer: Bruce Kenselaar Managing Editor,AV Management and Production: Patricia Burns ©2007 Pearson Education, Inc.

Pearson Prentice Hall Pearson Education, Inc. Upper Saddle River, NJ 07458 Art Editor: Gregory Dulles Director, Image Resource Center: Melinda Reo Manager, Rights and Permissions: Zina Arabia Manager,Visual Research: Beth Brenzel Manager, Cover Visual Research and Permissions: Karen Sanatar Manufacturing Manager, ESM: Alexis Heydt-Long Manufacturing Buyer: Lisa McDowell Executive Marketing Manager: Robin O’Brien Marketing Assistant: Mack Patterson All rights reserved. No part of this book may be reproduced in any form or by any means, without permission in writing from the publisher.

Pearson Prentice Hall™ is a trademark of Pearson Education, Inc. All other tradmarks or product names are the property of their respective owners. The author and publisher of this book have used their best efforts in preparing this book. These efforts include the development, research, and testing of the theories and programs to determine their effectiveness. The author and publisher make no warranty of any kind, expressed or implied, with regard to these programs or the documentation contained in this book. The author and publisher shall not be liable in any event for incidental or consequential amages in connection with, or arising out of, the furnishing, performance, or use of these programs. Printed in the United States of America 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 ISBN: 0-13-243310-9 Pearson Education Ltd. , London Pearson Education Australia Pty. Ltd. , Sydney Pearson Education Singapore, Pte. Ltd. Pearson Education North Asia Ltd. , Hong Kong Pearson Education Canada, Inc. , Toronto Pearson Educaci n de Mexico, S. A. de C. V. Pearson Education Japan, Tokyo Pearson Education Malaysia, Pte. Ltd. Pearson Education, Inc. , Upper Saddle River, New Jersey For my scintillating wife ATS

WEB SITE FOR DATA AND COMPUTER COMMUNICATIONS, EIGHTH EDITION The Web site at WilliamStallings. com/DCC/DCC8e. html provides support for instructors and students using the book. It includes the following elements. Course Support Materials The course support materials include • Copies of figures from the book in PDF format • A detailed set of course notes in PDF format suitable for student handout or for use as viewgraphs • A set of PowerPoint slides for use as lecture aids • Computer Science Student Support Site: contains a number of links and documents that the student may find useful in his/her ongoing computer science education.

The site includes a review of basic, relevant mathematics; advice on research, writing, and doing homework problems; links to computer science research resources, such as report repositories and bibliographies; and other useful links. • An errata sheet for the book, updated at most monthly T DCC Courses The DCC8e Web site includes links to Web sites for courses taught using the book. These sites can provide useful ideas about scheduling and topic ordering, as well as a number of useful handouts and other materials. Useful Web Sites The DCC8e Web site includes links to relevant Web sites, organized by chapter.

The links cover a broad spectrum of topics and will enable students to explore timely issues in greater depth. iv WEB SITE FOR DATA AND COMPUTER COMMUNICATIONS, EIGHTH EDITION v Supplemental Documents The DCC8e Web site includes a number of documents that expand on the treatment in the book. Topics include standards organizations, Sockets, TCP/IP checksum, ASCII, and the sampling theorem. Internet Mailing List An Internet mailing list is maintained so that instructors using this book can exchange information, suggestions, and questions with each other and the author.

Subscription information is provided at the book’s Web site. Simulation and Modeling Tools The Web site includes links to the cnet Web site and the modeling tools Web site. These packages can be used to analyze and experiment with protocol and network design issues. Each site includes downloadable software and background information. The instructor’s manual includes more information on loading and using the software and suggested student projects. This page intentionally left blank CONTENTS Web Site for Data and Computer Communications Preface xv 1 iv Chapter 0 Reader’s and Instructor’s Guide 0. Outline of the Book 2 0. 2 Roadmap 3 0. 3 Internet and Web Resources 5 0. 4 Standards 6 PART ONE OVERVIEW 9 Chapter 1 Data Communications, Data Networking, and the Internet 10 1. 1 Data Communications and Networking for Today’s Enterprise 12 1. 2 A Communications Model 16 1. 3 Data Communications 19 1. 4 Networks 22 1. 5 The Internet 25 1. 6 An Example Configuration 29 Chapter 2 Protocol Architecture, TCP/IP, and Internet-Based Applications 2. 1 The Need for a Protocol Architecture 33 2. 2 The TCP/IP Protocol Architecture 34 2. 3 The OSI Model 42 2. 4 Standardization within a Protocol Architecture 44 2. Traditional Internet-Based Applications 48 2. 6 Multimedia 48 2. 7 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 53 2. 8 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 54 Appendix 2A The Trivial File Transfer Protocol 57 PART TWO DATA COMMUNICATIONS 62 Chapter 3 Data Transmission 65 3. 1 Concepts and Terminology 67 3. 2 Analog and Digital Data Transmission 78 3. 3 Transmission Impairments 86 3. 4 Channel Capacity 91 3. 5 Recommended Reading and Web Site 96 3. 6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems Appendix 3A Decibels and Signal Strength 99 Chapter 4 Transmission Media 102 4. Guided Transmission Media 104 4. 2 Wireless Transmission 117 4. 3 Wireless Propagation 125 32 96 vii viii CONTENTS 4. 4 4. 5 4. 6 Line-of-Sight Transmission 129 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 133 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 134 Chapter 5 Signal Encoding Techniques 138 5. 1 Digital Data, Digital Signals 141 5. 2 Digital Data, Analog Signals 151 5. 3 Analog Data, Digital Signals 162 5. 4 Analog Data, Analog Signals 168 5. 5 Recommended Reading 175 5. 6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 175 Chapter 6 Digital Data Communication Techniques 180 6. Asynchronous and Synchronous Transmission 182 6. 2 Types of Errors 186 6. 3 Error Detection 186 6. 4 Error Correction 196 6. 5 Line Configurations 201 6. 6 Recommended Reading 203 6. 7 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 204 Chapter 7 Data Link Control Protocols 207 7. 1 Flow Control 209 7. 2 Error Control 216 7. 3 High-Level Data Link Control (HDLC) 222 7. 4 Recommended Reading 228 7. 5 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 229 Appendix 7A Performance Issues 232 Chapter 8 Multiplexing 239 8. 1 Frequency-Division Multiplexing 242 8. 2 Synchronous Time-Division Multiplexing 248 8. Statistical Time-Division Multiplexing 258 8. 4 Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line 265 8. 5 xDSL 268 8. 6 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 269 8. 7 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 270 Chapter 9 Spread Spectrum 274 9. 1 The Concept of Spread Spectrum 276 9. 2 Frequency Hopping Spread Spectrum 277 9. 3 Direct Sequence Spread Spectrum 282 9. 4 Code-Division Multiple Access 287 9. 5 Recommended Reading and Web Site 290 9. 6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 291 CONTENTS ix PART THREE WIDE AREA NETWORKS 295 Chapter 10 Circuit Switching and Packet Switching 297 10. Switched Communications Networks 299 10. 2 Circuit Switching Networks 301 10. 3 Circuit Switching Concepts 304 10. 4 Softswitch Architecture 307 10. 5 Packet-Switching Principles 309 10. 6 X. 25 317 10. 7 Frame Relay 319 10. 8 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 324 10. 9 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 325 Chapter 11 Asynchronous Transfer Mode 328 11. 1 Protocol Architecture 329 11. 2 ATM Logical Connections 331 11. 3 ATM Cells 335 11. 4 Transmission of ATM Cells 340 11. 5 ATM Service Categories 345 11. 6 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 348 11. Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 349 Chapter 12 Routing in Switched Networks 351 12. 1 Routing in Packet-Switching Networks 352 12. 2 Examples: Routing in ARPANET 362 12. 3 Least-Cost Algorithms 367 12. 4 Recommended Reading 372 12. 5 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 373 Chapter 13 Congestion Control in Data Networks 377 13. 1 Effects of Congestion 379 13. 2 Congestion Control 383 13. 3 Traffic Management 386 13. 4 Congestion Control in Packet-Switching Networks 13. 5 Frame Relay Congestion Control 388 13. 6 ATM Traffic Management 394 13. 7 ATM-GFR Traffic Management 406 13. Recommended Reading 409 13. 9 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 410 Chapter 14 Cellular Wireless Networks 413 14. 1 Principles of Cellular Networks 415 14. 2 First Generation Analog 427 14. 3 Second Generation CDMA 429 14. 4 Third Generation Systems 437 14. 5 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 440 14. 6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 441 387 x CONTENTS PART FOUR LOCAL AREA NETWORKS 444 Chapter 15 Local Area Network Overview 446 15. 1 Background 448 15. 2 Topologies and Transmission Media 451 15. 3 LAN Protocol Architecture 457 15. 4 Bridges 465 15. 5 Layer 2 and Layer 3 Switches 473 15. Recommended Reading and Web Site 478 15. 7 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 479 Chapter 16 High-Speed LANs 482 16. 1 The Emergence of High-Speed LANs 483 16. 2 Ethernet 485 16. 3 Fibre Channel 500 16. 4 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 504 16. 5 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 506 Appendix 16A Digital Signal Encoding for LANs 508 Appendix 16B Performance Issues 514 Appendix 16C Scrambling 518 Chapter 17 Wireless LANs 522 17. 1 Overview 523 17. 2 Wireless LAN Technology 528 17. 3 IEEE 802. 11 Architecture and Services 531 17. 4 IEEE 802. 11 Medium Access Control 535 17. 5 IEEE 802. 1Physical Layer 543 17. 6 IEEE 802. 11 Security Considerations 549 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 550 17. 7 17. 8 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 551 PART FIVE INTERNET AND TRANSPORT PROTOCOLS Chapter 18 Internetwork Protocols 556 18. 1 Basic Protocol Functions 558 18. 2 Principles of Internetworking 566 18. 3 Internet Protocol Operation 569 18. 4 Internet Protocol 576 18. 5 IPv6 586 18. 6 Virtual Private Networks and IP Security 596 18. 7 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 599 18. 8 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 600 Chapter 19 Internetwork Operation 603 19. 1 Multicasting 605 19. Routing Protocols 614 19. 3 Integrated Services Architecture 625 19. 4 Differentiated Services 636 554 CONTENTS xi 19. 5 19. 6 19. 7 19. 8 Service Level Agreements 645 IP Performance Metrics 646 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 649 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 651 657 Chapter 20 Transport Protocols 655 20. 1 Connection-Oriented Transport Protocol Mechanisms 20. 2 TCP 674 20. 3 TCP Congestion Control 683 20. 4 UDP 693 20. 5 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 695 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 695 20. 6 PART SIX Chapter 21 21. 1 21. 2 21. 3 21. 4 21. 5 21. 6 21. 7 21. 8 21. INTERNET APPLICATIONS 699 Network Security 701 Security Requirements and Attacks 703 Confidentiality with Conventional Encryption 705 Message Authentication and Hash Functions 713 Public-Key Encryption and Digital Signatures 720 Secure Socket Layer and Transport Layer Security 727 IPv4 and IPv6 Security 732 Wi-Fi Protected Access 737 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 739 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 740 Chapter 22 Internet Applications—Electronic Mail and Network Management 22. 1 Electronic Mail: SMTP and MIME 745 22. 2 Network Management: SNMP 760 22. 3 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 770 22. Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 771 743 Chapter 23 Internet Applications—Internet Directory Service and World Wide Web 23. 1 Internet Directory Service: DNS 774 23. 2 Web Access: HTTP 784 23. 3 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 795 23. 4 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 796 Chapter 24 Internet Applications—Multimedia 799 24. 1 Audio and Video Compression 800 24. 2 Real-Time Traffic 808 24. 3 Voice Over IP and Multimedia Support—SIP 811 24. 4 Real-Time Transport Protocol (RTP) 820 24. 5 Recommended Reading and Web Sites 831 24. 6 Key Terms, Review Questions, and Problems 832 773 ii CONTENTS APPENDICES 835 Appendix A Fourier Analysis 835 A. 1 Fourier Series Representation of Periodic Signals 836 A. 2 Fourier Transform Representation of Aperiodic Signals 837 A. 3 Recommended Reading 840 Appendix B Projects for Teaching Data and Computer Communications B. 1 Practical Exercises 842 B. 2 Sockets Projects 843 B. 3 Ethereal Projects 843 B. 4 Simulation and Modeling Projects 844 B. 5 Performance Modeling 844 B. 6 Research Projects 845 B. 7 Reading/Report Assignments 845 B. 8 Writing Assignments 845 B. 9 Discussion Topics 846 References Index 858 ONLINE APPENDICES WilliamStallings. om/DCC Appendix C Sockets: A Programmer’s Introduction C. 1 Versions of Sockets C. 2 Sockets, Socket Descriptors, Ports, and Connections The Client/Server Model of Communication C. 3 C. 4 Sockets Elements C. 5 Stream and Datagram Sockets C. 6 Run-Time Program Control C. 7 Remote Execution of a Windows Console Application Appendix D Standards Organizations D. 1 The Importance of Standards D. 2 Standards and Regulation D. 3 Standards-Setting Organizations Appendix E Appendix F The International Reference Alphabet Proof of the Sampling Theorem 847 841 Appendix G Physical-Layer Interfacing G. 1 V. 24/EIA-232-F G. ISDN Physical Interface Appendix H The OSI Model H. 1 The Model H. 2 The OSI Layers CONTENTS xiii Appendix I Queuing Effects I. 1 Queuing Models I. 2 Queuing Results Appendix J Orthogonality, Correlation, and Autocorrelation J. 1 Correlation and Autocorrelation J. 2 Orthogonal Codes Appendix K The TCP/IP Checksum K. 1 Ones-Complement Addition K. 2 Use in TCP and IP Appendix L TCP/IP Example Appendix M Uniform Resource Locators (URLs) and Uniform Resource Identifiers (URIs) M. 1 Uniform Resource Locator M. 2 Uniform Resource Identifier M. 3 To Learn More Appendix N Glossary Augmented Backus-Naur Form

This page intentionally left blank PREFACE Begin at the beginning and go on till you come to the end; then stop. —Alice in Wonderland, Lewis Carroll OBJECTIVES This book attempts to provide a unified overview of the broad field of data and computer communications. The organization of the book reflects an attempt to break this massive subject into comprehensible parts and to build, piece by piece, a survey of the state of the art. The book emphasizes basic principles and topics of fundamental importance concerning the technology and architecture of this field and provides a detailed discussion of leading-edge topics.

The following basic themes serve to unify the discussion: • Principles: Although the scope of this book is broad, there are a number of basic principles that appear repeatedly as themes and that unify this field. Examples are multiplexing, flow control, and error control. The book highlights these principles and contrasts their application in specific areas of technology. • Design approaches: The book examines alternative approaches to meeting specific communication requirements. • Standards: Standards have come to assume an increasingly important, indeed dominant, role in this field.

An understanding of the current status and future direction of technology requires a comprehensive discussion of the related standards. INTENDED AUDIENCE The book is intended for both an academic and a professional audience. For the professional interested in this field, the book serves as a basic reference volume and is suitable for self-study. As a textbook, it can be used for a one-semester or two-semester course. It covers the material in Networking (NET), a core area in the Information Technology body of knowledge, which is part of the Draft ACM/IEEE/AIS Computing Curricula 2005.

The book also covers the material in Computer Networks (CE-NWK), a core area in Computer Engineering 2004 Curriculum Guidelines from the ACM/IEEE Joint Task Force on Computing Curricula. PLAN OF THE TEXT The book is divided into six parts (see Chapter 0): • Overview • Data Communications • Wide Area Networks xv xvi PREFACE • Local Area Networks • Internet and Transport Protocols • Internet Applications In addition, the book includes an extensive glossary, a list of frequently used acronyms, and a bibliography. Each chapter includes problems and suggestions for further reading.

The chapters and parts of the book are sufficiently modular to provide a great deal of flexibility in the design of courses. See Chapter 0 for a number of detailed suggestions for both top-down and bottom-up course strategies. INSTRUCTIONAL SUPPORT MATERIALS To support instructors, the following materials are provided: • Solutions Manual: Solutions to all end-of-chapter Review Questions and Problems. • PowerPoint Slides: A set of slides covering all chapters, suitable for use in lecturing. • PDF files: Reproductions of all figures and tables from the book. Projects Manual: Suggested project assignments for all of the project categories listed below. Instructors may contact their Pearson Education or Prentice Hall representative for access to these materials. In addition, the book’s Web site supports instructors with: • Links to Webs sites for other courses being taught using this book • Sign up information for an Internet mailing list for instructors INTERNET SERVICES FOR INSTRUCTORS AND STUDENTS There is a Web site for this book that provides support for students and instructors.

The site includes links to other relevant sites, transparency masters of figures in the book, and sign-up information for the book’s Internet mailing list. The Web page is at WilliamStallings. com/DCC/DCC8e. html; see the section, Web Site for Data and Computer Communications, preceding the Table of Contents, for more information. An Internet mailing list has been set up so that instructors using this book can exchange information, suggestions, and questions with each other and with the author. As soon as typos or other errors are discovered, an errata list for this book will be available at WilliamStallings. om. PROJECTS AND OTHER STUDENT EXERCISES For many instructors, an important component of a data communications or networking course is a project or set of projects by which the student gets hands-on experience to reinforce concepts from the text. This book provides an unparalleled degree of support for including a projects component in the course. The instructor’s supplement not only includes guidance on how to assign and structure the projects but also includes a set of User’s PREFACE xvii Manuals for various project types plus specific assignments, all written especially for this book.

Instructors can assign work in the following areas: • Practical exercises: Using network commands, the student gains experience in network connectivity. • Sockets programming projects: The book is supported by a detailed description of Sockets available at the book’s Web site. The Instructors supplement includes a set of programming projects. Sockets programming is an “easy” topic and one that can result in very satisfying hands-on projects for students. • Ethereal projects: Ethereal is a protocol analyzer that enables students to study the behavior of protocols. Simulation projects: The student can use the simulation package cnet to analyze network behavior. • Performance modeling projects: Two performance modeling techniques are provided a tools package and OPNET. • Research projects: The instructor’s supplement includes a list of suggested research projects that would involve Web and literature searches. • Reading/report assignments: The instructor’s supplement includes a list of papers that can be assigned for reading and writing a report, plus suggested assignment wording. Writing assignments: The instructor’s supplement includes a list of writing assignments to facilitate learning the material. • Discussion topics: These topics can be used in a classroom, chat room, or message board environment to explore certain areas in greater depth and to foster student collaboration. This diverse set of projects and other student exercises enables the instructor to use the book as one component in a rich and varied learning experience and to tailor a course plan to meet the specific needs of the instructor and students. See Appendix B for details.

WHAT’S NEW IN THE EIGHTH EDITION This eighth edition is seeing the light of day less than four years after the publication of the seventh edition. During that time, the pace of change in this field continues unabated. In this new edition, I try to capture these changes while maintaining a broad and comprehensive coverage of the entire field. To begin the process of revision, the seventh edition of this book was extensively reviewed by a number of professors who teach the subject. The result is that, in many places, the narrative has been clarified and tightened, and illustrations have been improved.

Also, a number of new “field-tested” problems have been added. Beyond these refinements to improve pedagogy and user friendliness, there have been major substantive changes throughout the book. Every chapter has been revised, new chapters have been added, and the overall organization of the book has changed. Highlights include: • Updated coverage of Gigabit Ethernet and 10-Gbps Ethernet: New details of these standards are provided. • Updated coverage of WiFi/IEEE 802. 11 wireless LANs: IEEE 802. 11 and the related WiFi specifications have continued to evolve. viii PREFACE • New coverage of IP performance metrics and service level agreements (SLAs): These aspects of Quality of Service (QoS) and performance monitoring are increasingly important. • Address Resolution Protocol (ARP): This important protocol is now covered. • New coverage of TCP Tahoe, Reno, and NewReno: These congestion control algorithms are now common in most commercial implementations. • Expanded coverage of security: Chapter 21 is more detailed; other chapters provide overview of security for the relevant topic.

Among the new topics are Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA) and the secure hash algorithm SHA-512. • Domain Name System (DNS): This important scheme is now covered. • New coverage of multimedia: Introductory section in Chapter 2; detailed coverage in Chapter 24. Topics covered include video compression, SIP, and RTP. • Online appendices: Fourteen online appendices provide additional detail on important topics in the text, including Sockets programming, queuing models, the Internet checksum, a detailed example of TCP/IP operation, and the BNF grammar.

In addition, throughout the book, virtually every topic has been updated to reflect the developments in standards and technology that have occurred since the publication of the seventh edition. ACKNOWLEDGMENTS This new edition has benefited from review by a number of people, who gave generously of their time and expertise. The following people reviewed all or a large part of the manuscript: Xin Liu- (UC, Davis), Jorge Cobb, Andras Farago, Dr. Prasant Mohapatra (UC Davis), Dr. Jingxian Wu (Sonoma State University), G. R.

Dattareya (UT Dallas), Guanling Chen (Umass, Lowell), Bob Roohaprvar (Cal State East Bay), Ahmed Banafa (Cal State East Bay), Ching-Chen Lee (CSU Hayward), and Daji Qaio (Iowa State). Thanks also to the many people who provided detailed technical reviews of a single chapter: Dave Tweed, Bruce Lane, Denis McMahon, Charles Freund, Paul Hoadley, Stephen Ma, Sandeep Subramaniam, Dragan Cvetkovic, Fernando Gont, Neil Giles, Rajesh Thundil, and Rick Jones. In addition, Larry Owens of California State University and Katia Obraczka of the University of Southern California provided some homework problems.

Thanks also to the following contributors. Zornitza Prodanoff of the University of North Florida prepared the appendix on Sockets programming. Michael Harris of the University of South Florida is responsible for the Ethereal exercises and user’s guide. Lawrie Brown of the Australian Defence Force Academy of the University of New South Wales produced the PPT lecture slides. Finally, I would like to thank the many people responsible for the publication of the book, all of whom did their usual excellent job.

This includes the staff at Prentice Hall, particularly my editor Tracy Dunkelberger, her assistants Christianna Lee and Carole Snyder, and production manager Rose Kernan. Also, Patricia M. Daly did the copy editing. CHAPTER READER’S AND INSTRUCTOR’S GUIDE 0. 1 0. 2 0. 3 0. 4 Outline of the Book Roadmap Internet and Web Resources Standards 0 1 2 CHAPTER 0 / READER’S AND INSTRUCTOR’S GUIDE “In the meanwhile, then,” demanded Li-loe, “relate to me the story to which reference has been made, thereby proving the truth of your assertion, and at the same time affording n entertainment of a somewhat exceptional kind. ” “The shadows lengthen,” replied Kai Lung, “but as the narrative in question is of an inconspicuous span I will raise no barrier against your flattering request, especially as it indicates an awakening taste hitherto unexpected. ” —Kai Lung’s Golden Hours, Earnest Bramah This book, with its accompanying Web site, covers a lot of material. Here we give the reader some basic background information. 0. 1 OUTLINE OF THE BOOK The book is organized into five parts: Part One. Overview: Provides an introduction to the range of topics covered in the book.

This part includes a general overview of data communications and networking and a discussion of protocols, OSI, and the TCP/IP protocol suite. Part Two. Data Communications: Concerned primarily with the exchange of data between two directly connected devices. Within this restricted scope, the key aspects of transmission, interfacing, link control, and multiplexing are examined. Part Three. Wide Area Networks: Examines the internal mechanisms and user-network interfaces that have been developed to support voice, data, and multimedia communications over long-distance networks.

The traditional technologies of packet switching and circuit switching are examined, as well as the more recent ATM and wireless WANs. Separate chapters are devoted to routing and congestion control issues that are relevant both to switched data networks and to the Internet. Part Four. Local Area Networks: Explores the technologies and architectures that have been developed for networking over shorter distances. The transmission media, topologies, and medium access control protocols that are the key ingredients of a LAN design are explored and specific standardized LAN systems examined.

Part Five. Networking Protocols: Explores both the architectural principles and the mechanisms required for the exchange of data among computers, workstations, servers, and other data processing devices. Much of the material in this part relates to the TCP/IP protocol suite. Part Six. Internet Applications: Looks at a range of applications that operate over the Internet. A more detailed, chapter-by-chapter summary of each part appears at the beginning of that part. 0. 2 / ROADMAP 3 0. 2 ROADMAP Course Emphasis

The material in this book is organized into four broad categories: data transmission and communication; communications networks; network protocols; and applications and security. The chapters and parts of the book are sufficiently modular to provide a great deal of flexibility in the design of courses. The following are suggestions for three different course designs: • Fundamentals of Data Communications: Parts One (overview) and Two (data communications) and Chapters 10 and 11 (circuit switching, packet switching, and ATM). Communications Networks: If the student has a basic background in data communications, then this course could cover Parts One (overview), Three (WAN), and Four (LAN). • Computer Networks: If the student has a basic background in data communications, then this course could cover Part One (overview), Chapters 6 and 7 (data communication techniques and data link control), Part Five (protocols), and part or all of Part Six (applications). In addition, a more streamlined course that covers the entire book is possible by eliminating certain chapters that are not essential on a first reading.

Chapters that could be optional are Chapters 3 (data transmission) and 4 (transmission media), if the student has a basic understanding of these topics; Chapter 8 (multiplexing); Chapter 9 (spread spectrum); Chapters 12 through 14 (routing, congestion control, cellular networks); Chapter 18 (internetworking); and Chapter 21 (network security). Bottom-Up versus Top-Down The book is organized in a modular fashion. After reading Part One, the other parts can be read in a number of possible sequences.

Figure 0. 1a shows the bottom-up approach provided by reading the book from front to back. With this approach, each part builds on the material in the previous part, so that it is always clear how a given layer of functionality is supported from below. There is more material than can be comfortably covered in a single semester, but the book’s organization makes it easy to eliminate some chapters and maintain the bottom-up sequence. Figure 0. 1b suggests one approach to a survey course.

Some readers, and some instructors, are more comfortable with a top-down approach. After the background material (Part One), the reader continues at the application level and works down through the protocol layers. This has the advantage of immediately focusing on the most visible part of the material, the applications, and then seeing, progressively, how each layer is supported by the next layer down. Figure 0. 1c is an example of a comprehensive treatment and Figure 0. 1d is an example of a survey treatment. 4 CHAPTER 0 / READER’S AND INSTRUCTOR’S GUIDE

Part One Overview Part Two Data Communications Part Three Wide Area Networks Part Four Local Area Networks Part Five Internet and Transport Protocols Part Six Internet Applications (a) A bottom-up approach Part One Overview Chapter 18 The Internet Protocol Part Six Internet Applications Part Five TCP/IP Part Three WANs Part Four LANs Part Two Data Communications (c) A top-down approach (d) Another top-down approach (b) Another bottom-up approach Part One Overview Chapter 18 The Internet Protocol Part Six Internet Applications Part Five TCP/IP Part Three WANs (10, 12) Part Four LANs (15) Part One Overview (1, 2) Part Two Data Communications (3, 6, 7, 8) Part Three WANs (10, 12) Part Four LANs (15) Part Five TCP/IP (18, 20) Figure 0. 1 Suggested Reading Orders Finally, it is possible to select chapters to reflect specific teaching objectives by not sticking to a strict chapter ordering. We give two examples used in courses taught with the seventh edition.

One course used the sequence Part One (Overview); Chapter 3 (Data Transmission); Chapter 6 (Digital Data Communications Techniques); Chapter 7 (Data Link Control); Chapter 15 (LAN Overview); Chapter 16 (High-Speed LANs); Chapter 10 (Circuit and Packet Switching); Chapter 12 (Routing); Chapter 18 (Internet Protocols); and Chapter 19 (Internet Operation). The other course used the sequence Part One (Overview); Chapter 3 (Data Transmission); Chapter 4 (Guided and Wireless Transmission); Chapter 5 (Signal Encoding Techniques); Chapter 8 (Multiplexing); Chapter 15 (LAN 0. 3 / INTERNET AND WEB RESOURCES 5 Overview); Chapter 16 (High-Speed LANs); Chapter 10 (Circuit and Packet Switching); Chapter 20 (Transport Protocols); Chapter 18 (Internet Protocols); and Chapter 19 (Internet Operation). 0. 3 INTERNET AND WEB RESOURCES There are a number of resources available on the Internet and the Web to support this book and to help one keep up with developments in this field.

Web Sites for This Book A special Web page has been set up for this book at WilliamStallings. com/DCC/ DCC8e. html. See the two-page layout at the beginning of this book for a detailed description of that site. As soon as any typos or other errors are discovered, an errata list for this book will be available at the Web site. Please report any errors that you spot. Errata sheets for my other books are at WilliamStallings. com. I also maintain the Computer Science Student Resource Site, at WilliamStallings. com/StudentSupport. html. The purpose of this site is to provide documents, information, and links for computer science students and professionals.

Links and documents are organized into four categories: • Math: Includes a basic math refresher, a queuing analysis primer, a number system primer, and links to numerous math sites • How-to: Advice and guidance for solving homework problems, writing technical reports, and preparing technical presentations • Research resources: Links to important collections of papers, technical reports, and bibliographies • Miscellaneous: A variety of useful documents and links Other Web Sites There are numerous Web sites that provide information related to the topics of this book. In subsequent chapters, pointers to specific Web sites can be found in the Recommended Reading and Web Sites section. Because the addresses for Web sites tend to change frequently, I have not included URLs in the book. For all of the Web sites listed in the book, the appropriate link can be found at this book’s Web site. Other links not mentioned in this book will be added to the Web site over time.

The following are Web sites of general interest related to data and computer communications: • Network World: Information and links to resources about data communications and networking. • IETF: Maintains archives that relate to the Internet and IETF activities. Includes keyword-indexed library of RFCs and draft documents as well as many other documents related to the Internet and related protocols. 6 CHAPTER 0 / READER’S AND INSTRUCTOR’S GUIDE • Vendors: Links to thousands of hardware and software vendors who currently have Web sites, as well as a list of thousands of computer and networking companies in a phone directory. • IEEE Communications Society: Good way to keep up on conferences, publications, and so on. ACM Special Interest Group on Communications (SIGCOMM): Good way to keep up on conferences, publications, and so on. • International Telecommunications Union: Contains a listing of ITU-T recommendations, plus information on obtaining ITU-T documents in hard copy or on DVD. • International Organization for Standardization: Contains a listing of ISO standards, plus information on obtaining ISO documents in hard copy or on CD-ROM. • CommWeb: Links to vendors, tutorials, and other useful information. • CommsDesign: Lot of useful articles, tutorials, and product information. A bit hard to navigate, but worthwhile. USENET Newsgroups A number of USENET newsgroups are devoted to some aspect of data communications, networks, and protocols.

As with virtually all USENET groups, there is a high noise-to-signal ratio, but it is worth experimenting to see if any meet your needs. The most relevant are as follows: • comp. dcom. lans, comp. dcom. lans. misc: General discussions of LANs • comp. dcom. lans. ethernet: Covers Ethernet, Ethernet-like systems, and the IEEE 802. 3 CSMA/CD standards • comp. std. wireless: General discussion of wireless networks, including wireless LANs • comp. security. misc: Computer security and encryption • comp. dcom. cell-relay: Covers ATM and ATM LANs • comp. dcom. frame-relay: Covers frame relay networks • comp. dcom. net-management: Discussion of network management applications, protocols, and standards • comp. rotocols. tcp-ip: The TCP/IP protocol suite 0. 4 STANDARDS It has long been accepted in the telecommunications industry that standards are required to govern the physical, electrical, and procedural characteristics of communication equipment. In the past, this view has not been embraced by the computer industry. Whereas communication equipment vendors recognize that their 0. 4 / STANDARDS 7 equipment will generally interface to and communicate with other vendors’ equipment, computer vendors have traditionally attempted to monopolize their customers. The proliferation of computers and distributed processing has made that an untenable position.

Computers from different vendors must communicate with each other and, with the ongoing evolution of protocol standards, customers will no longer accept special-purpose protocol conversion software development. The result is that standards now permeate all of the areas of technology discussed in this book. There are a number of advantages and disadvantages to the standards-making process. We list here the most striking ones. The principal advantages of standards are as follows: • A standard assures that there will be a large market for a particular piece of equipment or software. This encourages mass production and, in some cases, the use of large-scale-integration (LSI) or very-large-scale-integration (VLSI) techniques, resulting in lower costs. A standard allows products from multiple vendors to communicate, giving the purchaser more flexibility in equipment selection and use. The principal disadvantages are as follows: • A standard tends to freeze the technology. By the time a standard is developed, subjected to review and compromise, and promulgated, more efficient techniques are possible. • There are multiple standards for the same thing. This is not a disadvantage of standards per se, but of the current way things are done. Fortunately, in recent years the various standards-making organizations have begun to cooperate more closely. Nevertheless, there are still areas where multiple conflicting standards exist.

Throughout this book, we describe the most important standards in use or being developed for various aspects of data and computer communications. Various organizations have been involved in the development or promotion of these standards. The following are the most important (in the current context) of these organizations: • Internet Society: The Internet SOCiety (ISOC) is a professional membership society with more than 150 organizational and 6000 individual members in over 100 countries. It provides leadership in addressing issues that confront the future of the Internet and is the organization home for the groups responsible for Internet infrastructure standards, including the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) and the Internet Architecture Board (IAB).

All of the RFCs and Internet standards are developed through these organizations. • IEEE 802: The IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) 802 LAN/MAN Standards Committee develops local area network standards and metropolitan area network standards. The most widely used standards are for the Ethernet family, wireless LAN, bridging, and virtual bridged LANs. An individual working group provides the focus for each area. 8 CHAPTER 0 / READER’S AND INSTRUCTOR’S GUIDE • ITU-T: The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) is an international organization within the United Nations System where governments and the private sector coordinate global telecom networks and services.

The ITU Telecommunication Standardization Sector (ITU-T) is one of the three sectors of the ITU. ITU-T’s mission is the production of standards covering all fields of telecommunications. • ATM Forum: The ATM Forum is an international nonprofit organization formed with the objective of accelerating the use of ATM (asynchronous transfer mode) products and services through a rapid convergence of interoperability specifications. In addition, the Forum promotes industry cooperation and awareness. • ISO: The International Organization for Standardization (ISO)1 is a worldwide federation of national standards bodies from more than 140 countries, one from each country.

ISO is a nongovernmental organization that promotes the development of standardization and related activities with a view to facilitating the international exchange of goods and services, and to developing cooperation in the spheres of intellectual, scientific, technological, and economic activity. ISO’s work results in international agreements that are published as International Standards. A more detailed discussion of these organizations is contained in Appendix D. 1 ISO is not an acronym (in which case it would be IOS), but a word, derived from the Greek, meaning equal. PART ONE Overview The purpose of Part One is to provide a background and context for the remainder of this book. The broad range of topics that are encompassed in the field of data and computer communications is introduced, and the fundamental concepts of protocols and protocol architectures are examined.

ROAD MAP FOR PART ONE Chapter 1 Data Communications, Data Networks, and The Internet Chapter 1 provides an overview of Parts Two through Four of the book, giving the “big picture. ” In essence, the book deals with four topics: data communications over a transmission link; wide area networks; local area networks; and protocols and the TCP/IP protocol architecture. Chapter 1 provides a preview of the first three of these topics. Chapter 2 Protocol Architecture, TCP/IP, and Internet-Based Applications Chapter 2 discusses the concept protocol architectures. This chapter can be read immediately following Chapter 1 or deferred until the beginning of Part Three, Four, or Five.

After a general introduction, the chapter deals with the two most important protocol architectures: the Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) model and TCP/IP. Although the OSI model is often used as the framework for discourse in this area, it is the TCP/IP protocol suite that is the basis for most commercially available interoperable products and that is the focus of Parts Five and Six of this book. 9 CHAPTER DATA COMMUNICATIONS, DATA NETWORKS, AND THE INTERNET 1. 1 1. 2 1. 3 1. 4 1. 5 1. 6 Data Communications and Networking for Today’s Enterprise A Communications Model Data Communications Networks The Internet An Example Configuration 1 10 The fundamental problem of communication is that of reproducing at one point either exactly or approximately a message selected at another point. The Mathematical Theory of Communication, Claude Shannon KEY POINTS • The scope of this book is broad, covering three general areas: data communications, networking, and protocols; the first two are introduced in this chapter. Data communications deals with the transmission of signals in a reliable and efficient manner. Topics covered include signal transmission, transmission media, signal encoding, interfacing, data link control, and multiplexing. Networking deals with the technology and architecture of the communications networks used to interconnect communicating devices. This field is generally divided into the topics of local area networks (LANs) and wide area networks (WANs). • •

The 1970s and 1980s saw a merger of the fields of computer science and data communications that profoundly changed the technology, products, and companies of the now combined computer-communications industry. The computercommunications revolution has produced several remarkable facts: • There is no fundamental difference between data processing (computers) and data communications (transmission and switching equipment). • There are no fundamental differences among data, voice, and video communications. • The distinction among single-processor computer, multiprocessor computer, local network, metropolitan network, and long-haul network has blurred.

One effect of these trends has been a growing overlap of the computer and communications industries, from component fabrication to system integration. Another result is the development of integrated systems that transmit and process all types of data and information. Both the technology and the technical standards organizations are driving toward integrated public systems that make virtually all data and information sources around the world easily and uniformly accessible. This book aims to provide a unified view of the broad field of data and computer communications. The organization of the book reflects an attempt to break this massive subject into comprehensible parts and to build, piece by piece, a survey of the state of the art.

This introductory chapter begins with a general model of communications. Then a brief discussion introduces each of the Parts Two through Four of this book. Chapter 2 provides an overview to Parts Five and Six 11 12 CHAPTER 1 / DATA COMMUNICATIONS, DATA NETWORKS, AND THE INTERNET 1. 1 DATA COMMUNICATIONS AND NETWORKING FOR TODAY’S ENTERPRISE Effective and efficient data communication and networking facilities are vital to any enterprise. In this section, we first look at trends that are increasing the challenge for the business manager in planning and managing such facilities. Then we look specifically at the requirement for ever-greater transmission speeds and network capacity. Trends

Three different forces have consistently driven the architecture and evolution of data communications and networking facilities: traffic growth, development of new services, and advances in technology. Communication traffic, both local (within a building or building complex) and long distance, both voice and data, has been growing at a high and steady rate for decades. The increasing emphasis on office automation, remote access, online transactions, and other productivity measures means that this trend is likely to continue. Thus, managers are constantly struggling to maximize capacity and minimize transmission costs. As businesses rely more and more on information technology, the range of services expands. This increases the demand for high-capacity networking and transmission facilities.

In turn, the continuing growth in high-speed network offerings with the continuing drop in prices encourages the expansion of services. Thus, growth in services and growth in traffic capacity go hand in hand. Figure 1. 1 gives some examples of information-based services and the data rates needed to support them [ELSA02]. Finally, trends in technology enable the provision of increasing traffic capacity and the support of a wide range of services. Four technology trends are particularly notable: 1. The trend toward faster and cheaper, both in computing and communications, continues. In terms of computing, this means more powerful computers and clusters of computers capable of supporting more demanding applications, such as multimedia applications.

In terms of communications, the increasing use of optical fiber has brought transmission prices down and greatly increased capacity. For example, for long-distance telecommunication and data network links, recent offerings of dense wavelength division multiplexing (DWDM) enable capacities of many terabits per second. For local area networks (LANs) many enterprises now have Gigabit Ethernet backbone networks and some are beginning to deploy 10-Gbps Ethernet. 2. Both voice-oriented telecommunications networks, such as the public switched telephone network (PSTN), and data networks, including the Internet, are more “intelligent” than ever. Two areas of intelligence are noteworthy.

First, today’s networks can offer differing levels of quality of service (QoS), which include specifications for maximum delay, minimum throughput, and so on. Second, today’s networks provide a variety of customizable services in the areas of network management and security. 1. 1 / DATA COMMUNICATIONS AND NETWORKING FOR TODAY’S ENTERPRISE Speed (kbps) Transaction processing Messaging/text apps Voice Location services Still image transfers Internet/VPN access Database access Enhanced Web surfing Low-quality video Hifi audio Large file transfer Moderate video Interactive entertainment High-quality video Performance: Poor Adequate Good 9. 6 14. 4 28 64 144 384 2000 13 VPN: virtual private network Figure 1. 1 Services versus Throughput Rates 3.

The Internet, the Web, and associated applications have emerged as dominant features of both the business and personal world, opening up many opportunities and challenges for managers. In addition to exploiting the Internet and the Web to reach customers, suppliers, and partners, enterprises have formed intranets and extranets1 to isolate their proprietary information free from unwanted access. 4. There has been a trend toward ever-increasing mobility for decades, liberating workers from the confines of the physical enterprise. Innovations include voice mail, remote data access, pagers, fax, e-mail, cordless phones, cell phones and cellular networks, and Internet portals.

The result is the ability of employees to take their business context with them as they move about. We are now seeing the growth of high-speed wireless access, which further enhances the ability to use enterprise information resources and services anywhere. 1 Briefly, an intranet uses Internet and Web technology in an isolated facility internal to an enterprise; an extranet extends a company’s intranet out onto the Internet to allow selected customers, suppliers, and mobile workers to access the company’s private data and applications. 14 CHAPTER 1 / DATA COMMUNICATIONS, DATA NETWORKS, AND THE INTERNET Data Transmission and Network Capacity Requirements

Momentous changes in the way organizations do business and process information have been driven by changes in networking technology and at the same time have driven those changes. It is hard to separate chicken and egg in this field. Similarly, the use of the Internet by both businesses and individuals reflects this cyclic dependency: the availability of new image-based services on the Internet (i. e. , the Web) has resulted in an increase in the total number of users and the traffic volume generated by each user. This, in turn, has resulted in a need to increase the speed and efficiency of the Internet. On the other hand, it is only such increased speed that makes the use of Web-based applications palatable to the end user.

In this section, we survey some of the end-user factors that fit into this equation. We begin with the need for high-speed LANs in the business environment, because this need has appeared first and has forced the pace of networking development. Then we look at business WAN requirements. Finally we offer a few words about the effect of changes in commercial electronics on network requirements. The Emergence of High-Speed LANs Personal computers and microcomputer workstations began to achieve widespread acceptance in business computing in the early 1980s and have now achieved virtually the status of the telephone: an essential tool for office workers.

Until relatively recently, office LANs provided basic connectivity services—connecting personal computers and terminals to mainframes and midrange systems that ran corporate applications, and providing workgroup connectivity at the departmental or divisional level. In both cases, traffic patterns were relatively light, with an emphasis on file transfer and electronic mail. The LANs that were available for this type of workload, primarily Ethernet and token ring, are well suited to this environment. In the 1990s, two significant trends altered the role of the personal computer and therefore the requirements on the LAN: 1. The speed and computing power of personal computers continued to enjoy explosive growth. These more powerful platforms support graphics-intensive applications and ever more elaborate graphical user interfaces to the operating system. . MIS (management information systems) organizations have recognized the LAN as a viable and essential computing platform, resulting in the focus on network computing. This trend began with client/server computing, which has become a dominant architecture in the business environment and the more recent Webfocused intranet trend. Both of these approaches involve the frequent transfer of potentially large volumes of data in a transaction-oriented environment. The effect of these trends has been to increase the volume of data to be handled over LANs and, because applications are more interactive, to reduce the acceptable delay on data transfers.

The earlier generation of 10-Mbps Ethernets and 16-Mbps token rings was simply not up to the job of supporting these requirements. The following are examples of requirements that call for higher-speed LANs: • Centralized server farms: In many applications, there is a need for user, or client, systems to be able to draw huge amounts of data from multiple centralized servers, called server farms. An example is a color publishing operation, in 1. 1 / DATA COMMUNICATIONS AND NETWORKING FOR TODAY’S ENTERPRISE 15 which servers typically contain tens of gigabytes of image data that must be downloaded to imaging workstations. As the performance of the servers themselves has increased, the bottleneck has shifted to the network. Power workgroups: These groups typically consist of a small number of cooperating users who need to draw massive data files across the network. Examples are a software development group that runs tests on a new software version, or a computer-aided design (CAD) company that regularly runs simulations of new designs. In such cases, large amounts of data are distributed to several workstations, processed, and updated at very high speed for multiple iterations. • High-speed local backbone: As processing demand grows, LANs proliferate at a site, and high-speed interconnection is necessary. Corporate Wide Area Networking Needs As recently as the early 1990s, there was an emphasis in many organizations on a centralized data processing model.

In a typical environment, there might be significant computing facilities at a few regional offices, consisting of mainframes or well-equipped midrange systems. These centralized facilities could handle most corporate applications, including basic finance, accounting, and personnel programs, as well as many of the business-specific applications. Smaller, outlying offices (e. g. , a bank branch) could be equipped with terminals or basic personal computers linked to one of the regional centers in a transaction-oriented environment. This model began to change in the early 1990s, and the change accelerated through the mid-1990s. Many organizations have dispersed their employees into multiple smaller offices.

There is a growing use of telecommuting. Most significant, the nature of the application structure has changed. First client/server computing and, more recently, intranet computing have fundamentally restructured the organizational data processing environment. There is now much more reliance on personal computers, workstations, and servers and much less use of centralized mainframe and midrange systems. Furthermore, the virtually universal deployment of graphical user interfaces to the desktop enables the end user to exploit graphic applications, multimedia, and other data-intensive applications. In addition, most organizations require access to the Internet.

When a few clicks of the mouse can trigger huge volumes of data, traffic patterns have become more unpredictable while the average load has risen. All of these trends means that more data must be transported off premises and into the wide area. It has long been accepted that in the typical business environment, about 80% of the traffic remains local and about 20% traverses wide area links. But this rule no longer applies to most companies, with a greater percentage of the traffic going into the WAN environment [COHE96]. This traffic flow shift places a greater burden on LAN backbones and, of course, on the WAN facilities used by a corporation.

Thus, just as in the local area, changes in corporate data traffic patterns are driving the creation of high-speed WANs. Digital Electronics The rapid conversion of consumer electronics to digital technology is having an impact on both the Internet and corporate intranets. As these new gadgets come into view and proliferate, they dramatically increase the amount of image and video traffic carried by networks. Two noteworthy examples of this trend are digital versatile disks (DVDs) and digital still cameras. With the capacious DVD, the electronics industry has at last 16 CHAPTER 1 / DATA COMMUNICATIONS, DATA NETWORKS, AND THE INTERNET found an acceptable replacement for the analog VHS videotape.

The DVD has replaced the videotape used in videocassette recorders (VCRs) and replaced the CD-ROM in personal computers and servers. The DVD takes video into the digital age. It delivers movies with picture quality that outshines laser disks, and it can be randomly accessed like audio CDs, which DVD machines can also play. Vast volumes of data can be crammed onto the disk, currently seven times as much as a CDROM. With DVD’s huge storage capacity and vivid quality, PC games have become more realistic and educational software incorporates more video. Following in the wake of these developments is a new crest of traffic over the Internet and corporate intranets, as this material is incorporated into Web sites. A related product development is the digital camcorder.

This product has made it easier for individuals and companies to make digital video files to be placed on corporate and Internet Web sites, again adding to the traffic burden. 1. 2 A COMMUNICATIONS MODEL This section introduces a simple model of communications, illustrated by the block diagram in Figure 1. 2a. The fundamental purpose of a communications system is the exchange of data between two parties. Figure 1. 2b presents one particular example, which is communication between a workstation and a server over a public telephone network. Another example is the exchange of voice signals between two telephones over the same network. The key elements of the model are as follows: • Source.

This device generates the data to be transmitted; examples are telephones and personal computers. Source system Destination system Source Transmitter Transmission System (a) General block diagram Receiver Destination Workstation Modem Public telephone network (b) Example Modem Server Figure 1. 2 Simplified Communications Model 1. 2 / A COMMUNICATIONS MODEL 17 • Transmitter: Usually, the data generated by a source system are not transmitted directly in the form in which they were generated. Rather, a transmitter transforms and encodes the information in such a way as to produce electromagnetic signals that can be transmitted across some sort of transmission system.

For example, a modem takes a digital bit stream from an attached device such as a personal computer and transforms that bit stream into an analog signal that can be handled by the telephone network. • Transmission system: This can be a single transmission line or a complex network connecting source and destination. • Receiver: The receiver accepts the signal from the transmission system and converts it into a form that can be handled by the destination device. For example, a modem will accept an analog signal coming from a network or transmission line and convert it into a digital bit stream. • Destination: Takes the incoming data from the receiver.

This simple narrative conceals a wealth of technical complexity. To get some idea of the scope of this complexity, Table 1. 1 lists some of the key tasks that must be performed in a data communications system. The list is somewhat arbitrary: Elements could be added; items on the list could be merged; and some items represent several tasks that are performed at different “levels” of the system. However, the list as it stands is suggestive of the scope of this book. The first item, transmission system utilization, refers to the need to make efficient use of transmission facilities that are typically shared among a number of communicating devices.

Various techniques (referred to as multiplexing) are used to allocate the total capacity of a transmission medium among a number of users. Congestion control techniques may be required to assure that the system is not overwhelmed by excessive demand for transmission services. To communicate, a device must interface with the transmission system. All the forms of communication discussed in this book depend on the use of electromagnetic signals propagated over a transmission medium. Thus, once an interface is established, signal generation is required for communication. The properties of the signal, such as form and intensity, must be such that the signal is (1) capable of being propagated through the transmission system, and (2) interpretable as data at the receiver.

Not only must the signals be generated to conform to the requirements of the transmission system and receiver, but also there must be some form of synchronization Table 1. 1 Communications Tasks Transmission system utilization Interfacing Signal generation Synchronization Exchange management Error detection and correction Flow control Addressing Routing Recovery Message formatting Security Network management 18 CHAPTER 1 / DATA COMMUNICATIONS, DATA NETWORKS, AND THE INTERNET between transmitter and receiver. The receiver must be able to determine when a signal begins to arrive and when it ends. It must also know the duration of each signal element.

Beyond the basic matter of deciding on the nature and timing of signals, there is a variety of requirements for communication between two parties that might be collected under the term exchange management. If data are to be exchanged in both directions over a period of time, the two parties must cooperate. For example, for two parties to engage in a telephone conversation, one party must dial the number of the other, causing signals to be generated that result in the ringing of the called phone. The called party completes a connection by lifting the receiver. For data processing devices, more will be needed than simply establishing a connection; certain conventions must be decided on.

These conventions may include whether both devices may transmit simultaneously or must take turns, the amount of data to be sent at one time, the format of the data, and what to do if certain contingencies such as an error arise. The next two items might have been included under exchange managem

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Telecommunications Law

Telecom Law and Regulation Professor: David Olson September 14, 2012 Week 2 Case Study What is the natural monopoly ? Natural Monopoly is a monopoly that exists because the cost of producing the product (i. e. , a good or a service) is lower due to economies of scale if there is just a single producer than if there are several competing producers. (http://www. linfo. org/natural_monopoly. html) Today, telecommunications technology affects lives to a greater degree than ever before.

Communication has evolved over many years from the earliest attempts at verbal communication to the use of sophisticated technology to enhance the ability to communicate effectively with others. A natural monopoly is said to exist in an market where the costs of production are such that it is less expensive for demand to be bet by one firm than it would be for that same demand to be met by more than one firm (Benjamin et al. , 2005).

Every time a telephone call is made, a television is watched, or a personal computer is used, benefits of telecommunication technologies are being received. The American television industry is presently undergoing rapid change. Where once there was a limit on viewing options imposed by scarcity of electro-magnetic spectrum, confining most views to handful of channels that were dominated by three COM distribution systems, cable television is emerging now as “ the television of abundance,” (Sloan Commission, New York 1981).

A natural monopoly is said to exist in any market where the costs of production are such that it is less expensive for demand to be met by one firm than it would be for that same demand to be met by more than one firm (Benjamin et al. , 2005). Examples of natural monopolies are railway systems and telephones systems. All the phones should be connected and network together to attain the highest benefit. The monopoly is called natural because many competitors in these markets tend to die out leaving just one or a few providers for any given geographic area.

But, the essence of the concept of a natural monopoly is there, that these are markets that end to have one or few providers. I believe that the government should treat telephones, cable and/or broadcasting companies has a natural monopoly. The technology industry has been a major problem in areas of the United States. Before wireless transmission really ever became a reality, cable was the ruler. After reading and viewing information about this topic customers live in around of the U. S.

A that have limited cable service providers in their area and there is only one Cable Company to choose from which proves a natural monopoly. It has been verified time and time again about the lack of competition, the patrons are the ones who pay more for cable services. More over, the absences of superiority programming that the providers were not motivated to provide better service to consumers. The Commission is not the only regulatory authority showing interest in cable television over the years. Local government has also been quite active in the regulation of local cable providers.

Indeed, local governments for a long time insisted that cable providers apply to them for permission to be a local “cable franchisee” and local governments would often extract costly concessions from cable providers in exchange for granting those franchise rights (Benjamin et al. , 2005) The notion of having competition may end up costing more doesn’t prove to be true in most cases, in general having the opportunity to choose the best providers with what is needed on service is far better than having dismal programming and choices.

It is in the preferences and providers having all the choices for the consumers that are of benefit and one that is a win-win. Competition does not necessarily prove the notion that it costs more for hardware and software, that these are designed to be able to provide maximum number of customers. The concept of telecommunications may be defined as the transmission of information from one location to another by electronic means. Telecommunications is using electronic systems to communicate. Life is constantly changing and has been shifting faster since the rapid advancements in telecommunication.

For the reason that ongoing attempts to find improved and supplementary efficient ways to communicate, the process of communication has gradually enhanced and I believe it will continue to do so. References: The Linux Information Project (2005). Natural Monopoly Definition. Retrieved 9/11/2012 from http:// (http://www. linfo. org/natural_monopoly. html) Benjamin, Douglas Gary Lichtman, Howard Shelanski, and Philip J. Weiser, (2006). Telecommunications Law and Policy Sloan Commission, (1981). On the Cable: The Television of Abundance

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Verba and Non-Verbal Communication Theories

In all communication events, unless there is a relationship between actions and words, the message can be wrongly interpreted. I observed a conversation between a bartender and a customer in busy and crowded bar. The customer wanted the buy one more double bourbon but the bartender refused to sell to him. This resulted in a series of communication theories, which will be analysed later.

In order to analyse the communication theories that provide most insight into understanding the dynamics of the observed event, it is necessary to define what communication is and examine the different communication models and theories used in the observed event. In the context of the observed event, verbal and nonverbal communication, paralanguage, noise (psychological and physical), attribution errors, body movements (emblems, illustrators, affect displays and regulators) are the communication theories that will be examined to show how they all combine to give more meaning to messages.

Communication is a process of which information flows from one source to a receiver and back. ( who) communication is a two way process which is complete only when the receiver gives feedback that he or she has understood the message. When people use words to communicate, they do not just listen to what is said in order to understand the message. They also look at the person who is speaking to see what their body is doing and listen to the way they are saying the words to understand their full message. For example, in the observed event, 80% of the communication has been made before the customer even opened his mouth to speak.

The customer staggered to the bar and verbally asked to be served one more double bourbon. The bartender refused to serve him because he knew the customer is already drunk and according to the NSW law, should not be served any more drinks. The question is how did the bartender know the customer was drunk? As opposed to the verbal message, the bartender was able to decipher the nonverbal messages being sent by the customer – the disturbed balance in his movement, his glassy eyes, smell of alcohol, sweat on his face, and the muddled speech. ll these indicated to the bartender that this customer is drunk.

When his request was denied, the customer became defensive saying he was not drunk. He refused the alternative non-alcoholic drinks offered by the bartender and became instantly aggressive, yelling and abusing the bartender. One could read the evidence of paralanguage in the customer’s voice. ‘Paralanguage is the vocal (but nonverbal) dimension of speech. (reading 2. 2) one could read from the high pitch of his voice, and the angry tone of his voice which was becoming loud that the customer is beginning to get angry and aggressive.

One could also see the angry look on his face; this is called affect display which is any emotional response in a communication. There are also different body movements by both the bartender and the customer that all gave more meaning to the conversation. For example, when the customer could not be controlled, the bartender called the security staff by raising his hand palm up and establishing eye contact with him. The security understood immediately that his service was needed at the bar.

This nonverbal body movement is called emblems. According to ( textbook p. 69) ‘emblems are those gestures that have a specific verbal translation. Another body movement was the way the bartender was shaking his head side to side at the same time he was declining the customer’s request. This type is called an illustrator. Illustrators are all those gestures that go along with our speech. ’(textbook p. 70) There was also the evidence of repetitions of messages in the observed event. the bartender had to explain to the customer over and over again why he would not serve him more alcohol because the customer kept saying he should be served now.

Here, there was difficulty getting the message across to the customer and this could be due to a particular barrier to communication called noise. Noise is any distortion factor that blocks, disrupts, or distrusts the message being sent to the receiver, interfering with the communication process. (textbook p. 7) In this context, the noise could be psychological due to the emotional state of the customer (being drunk) or physical noise stemming from the loud music in the club and also the presence of many people. Not getting the message across easily could also be due to attribution errors which are errors people make because they assign a certain meaning to something that was not intended.

In this event, the customer is of Indian origin; so it could be that he understood the bartender’s shaking of head to be a ‘Yes’ instead of ‘No’. This is because a slow shaking of head in India means ‘Yes’. The presence of regulators such as ‘pauses’ that occurred throughout this conversation indicate opportunities for feedback and responses to be sure the other person is listening. To conclude, communication, which is the exchange of ideas, knowledge, information and attitudes, is much more than words.

Although verbal and nonverbal communication are similar in that they both convey meanings and different in more ways, both of them put together provide complete meaning of the message. Even though they work together, it is nonverbal communication that accounts for 65 to 93% of the total meaning of communication. (birdwhitsell, 1970; mehrabian, 1981). This means that what is not being said in a communication determines the success or failure of that communication. Due to the dynamic nature of communications, it is important to master nonverbal behaviours especially in service industries like tourism and hospitality for effective communication.

The bartender being able to know the customer was drunk was due to the nonverbal symptoms of drunkenness. Most symptoms of drunkenness are universal irrespective of age, gender, culture or origin and can be easily identified. Thus the different communication theories used in this communication event: verbal and nonverbal communication (vocal and nonvocal), the different types of body movements, noise (physical and psychological), attribution errors all combine to provide the most insight into understanding the dynamics of the observed event.

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Nonverbal Communication in an Emergency Room

For this project I had to decide upon and visit an environment that I would not normally be in. This environment had to be different from my normal and more comfortable surroundings, in which I thought the nonverbal communication patterns would differ from my own. I made my observations over two days. The environment I chose to observe was an emergency room waiting area. I chose this because I figured the people that I would be observing would not necessarily be very different from me, but I figured that they would be in a different emotional state then I was.

I was just an observer in the emergency room while everyone else was there because of some sort of serious medical issue. During my observations I tried to identify any emblems, adaptors, affect displays, eye gaze patterns, regulators, and illustrators and interpret why they might be occurring and what they mean. I also studied and interpreted the impact of the environment itself and what effect it might have had on the people in it. I took a seat toward the back of the room to get the largest possible view of the waiting room. The overall feeling was fairly comfortable and it was not intimidating.

The first thing I noticed was that the lighting in the waiting room was dimmer than the lighting in the rest of the hospital. It seemed like mood lighting to me and compared to the fluorescent lit rooms in the rest of the hospital it was more relaxing. The wall facing the outside was basically a wall of tinted windows looking into the parking lot. The windows were tinted to let in a comfortable amount of sunlight without it being too bright. I think the goal was to allow as much natural light in as possible. This would be a good idea in a waiting room because the windows can help reduce the feeling of being “stuck” there.

There were a couple televisions mounted on the wall. Obviously, these were put there to help waiting patients and visitors pass the time. But I would also argue that the televisions were placed there to make the waiting room more familiar and comfortable like someone’s living room. The color of the wallpaper was a very dull, khaki, color. I think that color was picked because it is a neutral color that would not evoke any emotion. Another thing I took note of was how the seating arrangement was laid out. The room was a rectangle shape. The chairs lined the walls and outlined the shape of he room.

Other chairs were placed in the middle of the room around a couple of coffee tables. It didn’t seem to make sense at first. However, the more I stared at it, the more it made sense. The chairs seemed arranged to accommodate the different types of groups that would be sitting there. Some rows were long and straight without any other rows opposite them, which I thought would be suitable for somebody waiting alone and might not want to be facing any strangers and keep to themselves. Other rows were arranged to give you the option to sit face to face with someone.

There were also some rows that were arranged in a square facing each other but further apart, possibly so that if you wanted to talk to somebody you didn’t know, you had the option to do so, without it feeling obligated or awkward. At the end of the rectangle-shaped room, in the back left and right corners, were two additional areas. One was a “family consultation room” and the other area was the “children’s play area. ” These two environments differed from the rest of the waiting room. The children’s play area was in the corner and was made to be a fun environment.

There was a small, pink, round table with four matching chairs. The ceiling dropped down and was lower than the rest of the room as you entered the play area. I felt this made it cozier for children because the ceiling height was more in proportion to a smaller child’s height. The paint on the walls changed also. It had the same color wall as the rest of the waiting room but there was a big, blue, zigzag pattern that started half way up the wall and wrapped around the perimeter of the play area. It seemed appropriate because even without the label on the wall, the area was clearly a children’s play area.

The pattern also set a playful mood. The emergency room can be a stressful place and having to a specific place for children to feel comfortable in was a good idea. The second area was a “family consultation room. ” This was an additional room in the back right corner. This room is for families that have received devastating information about a patient in the emergency room. The room has a door but it was open and unoccupied at the times I was there. This room also had a different feel then the waiting room just outside. As you would imagine it had a very comforting feel.

The walls were a light blue color that seemed to be painted on with a sponge. This room also had a wall of windows but it had an optional pull-down shade to cover the windows if desired. The chairs in this room were different too. There were a set of two normal chairs, a couch and a two-seat bench. The couch had room for three people and the bench had room for two. The couch and bench were different from the seats in the other rooms because these did not have any dividers between the seats. I think the idea behind that was that the room was an area to be close with friends and family.

Having places to sit were you can be close to someone next to you was essential for the purpose of the room. After making notes about the environment I started making notes on everything I saw people doing, and taking note of the different types of people I was observing. I also intentionally put on headphones so that I would only be interpreting non verbal behaviors. Some of the emblems I saw were unique to the individual, while others were repeated among a lot of people. One that I saw a lot of people doing was to put an arm around the person sitting next to them.

Along that same line, people were holding each other’s hands, as well as putting a hand on somebody’s leg. The triage nurse that was calling new arrivals into triage rooms used her hands and body movement to direct people to come with her and to direct them into specific rooms. She would call out someone’s name and when that person acknowledged that they heard her she would invite them over with a wave of her hand. I also saw her point to one of the triage rooms without saying anything when a doctor walked into the waiting room. The doctor had come in and looked at her with a questioning facial expression.

She answered his non verbal question with a non verbal answer. She pointed to the second of two triage rooms. That was the answer the doctor was looking for because he entered the triage room without a word. Other conversational examples that were simpler were things such as a person shaking or nodding their head as a response to someone else talking to them. One woman was actually nodding and shaking her head in response to whoever she was talking to on her cell phone. There were a lot of adaptors throughout the entire room, visitors, patients and hospital staff alike.

A few of them were actually common throughout the room, not always simultaneous, but at some point or another they were repeated by others. One such adaptor was bouncing a leg up and down while talking or waiting. A couple of people also kept shifting in their chairs while talking. The two most common I saw with people’s hands were drumming their fingers on the arm rest, or rubbing their hands incessantly. One that I only saw once was a girl who every few minutes had to switch the position of her feet that were propped up on a coffee table in front of her.

She seemed to be doing it out of boredom or restlessness. I felt she was doing it too often for it to have been the result of her feet being uncomfortable from being in the same position for too long. Others that I noticed were small. A security guard that passed through a few times had the consistent habit of playing with his set of keys attached to his belt. I spotted one of the nurses at the information desk had a habit of tapping the end of her pen gently on her two front teeth while she was pausing to look up anything on her computer.

Most of the affect displays throughout the room were revealers, and very similar to each other, without much change from when I entered to when I left. The first thing I noticed was that nobody was smiling. The only smiles I noticed were fake smiles. The person smiling was forcing the smile. This occurred a lot within groups sitting together when they weren’t talking. A mother “smiled” at her son but her eyebrows were furrowed and pulled together, and her eyes remained unexpressive. The mother’s “smile” was a sign of reassurance and maybe it was interpreted by her son as a real smile, but the mother was clearly worried.

Most of the people in the room had blank expressions or just a slight frown. It seemed as if everyone was in deep thought and most people did not look thrilled to be there. Eye gaze patterns throughout the room varied quite a bit depending on the person’s situation. A group that was sitting together in the area of chairs facing each other kept the most eye contact with each other while talking and seemed very comfortable with it. There was another group that was not as good at making eye contact. The group consisted of an elderly woman in a wheelchair along with a middle aged man and woman.

The man looked very agitated. He sat with his body positioned forward toward his companions, but his head was turned completely to the side so that he was looking out the windows. He had his elbow propped on the back of the chair next to him, his chin was resting in his hand and his fingers were covering his mouth. When one of the women talked to him his eyes darted to the one speaking to him but quickly went back to the windows as he answered. The women exchanged glances with each other that seemed to let the other know that they both picked up on his agitation and should probably let him be.

A few people’s gazes were all over the place. Those people seemed to be the ones that had nothing to do. They were sitting there without a magazine or anything to distract them. Another person sitting alone also mainly looked at their lap or the ground, occasionally locking eyes with a stranger sitting across from them and quickly looking away. The same thing happened to me with a girl sitting opposite of me. We kept making eye contact when I was looking around the room for examples. I’m pretty sure she was trying to figure out what I was doing.

I do think she did figure out that I was making some sort of observations and recording them because she started to avert her eyes more quickly the next two times we made eye contact. Regulators were hard to spot because, for the most part, nobody was talking to each other, with the exception of the two groups near me. In the corner what I noticed was, while the man was listening to the woman, he sat back in his chair, body turned towards her, and nodded his head. When it was his turn to speak, he did the opposite and sat up and leaned more towards her and looked around more.

The family was all fairly reserved while listening; hands in their laps, bodies turned towards the speaker, but were more animated with their hands and body shifting as they spoke. The illustrators I saw were mostly emphasizing or helping illustrate something somebody was saying. I watched one funny example play out between the two girls in front of me. I never heard what they were talking about but at one point they both put their arms out to their sides and touched the tip of their noses with their pointer fingers.

They were discussing either a field sobriety test given by a police officer or a balance test given by a doctor. Another example like this helping explain speech was a young man holding both of his closed fists together and snapping them apart while talking to a woman he was with. I determined he was explaining what had happened to his leg since he was in a wheelchair and his leg was wrapped. Those were the only specific illustrators I saw that seemed to have some type of meaning, where the most common thing was just random gesturing of people’s hands as they spoke.

This did not always seem to have any direct connection to what they were speaking about. The adaptors I saw had clear and similar messages with each other. One man came off as stressed and anxious because he was rubbing and squeezing his hands together very roughly without seeming to be aware of it. Fidgeting with his hands seemed to help him take away from the stress he was feeling. Similar to the man rubbing his hands was the girl shifting the position of her propped up feet. She was releasing energy through movement of her feet. It seemed as though she didn’t want to be sitting and would rather be moving around.

Most of the prescriptive interpretations I came up with for the behaviors observed came to me immediately as I saw them, as most of them seemed to convey a very clear message in my mind. Almost all of the emblems I saw were various people putting an arm around the person’s shoulder sitting next to them, holding their hand, or putting their hand on their leg. Touch is a powerful form communication. These all were ways of conveying to the other person that they were there for them, to comfort them and help them in this emotional time, and that everything would be alright. I didn’t have to do too much adjusting once I entered the room.

I didn’t stick out anymore than anybody else did as far as my clothing went. Since this is an emergency clinic, I assumed that none of these people planned to be here so there really was no particular style of dress. Also, the fact that I was there alone and not talking to anybody actually helped me blend in. There were plenty of people alone and keeping to themselves. The only time I felt like I wasn’t blending in was when the girl in front of me noticed I was writing about the room. That happened on the first day. The second day I went into the emergency waiting room, I wore a hat to better conceal my face and what my eyes were doing.

Overall I thought what I found was pretty interesting because I have been in this environment before, noticing most of these things, but the observations this time were put in a whole new perspective because I had to consciously interpret each one, instead of casually noting them. What I think was unique and interesting about this environment was the fact that, although everybody in the room could have easily been of a different ethnicity, gender, age, religion, or political affiliation than each other, they all still had a very similar communication style and seemed to convey the same general emotions.

The overall communication was mostly nonverbal simply for the fact that there was very little talking. However, the non verbal communication that was happening was easily interpreted by the people I was observing. There are few places you can go where the overall internal state of mind and emotions will be so universally contained within one room and made this an excellent location. This exercise made me realize how much and how effectively we communicate as humans without even talking.

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Project Communications Plan

Critical Thinking – Module 2 Project Management November 11, 2012 Project Communications Plan The three websites that I researched for this critical thinking assignment were: 1) Colorado. gov; 2) Dot. ca. gov and 3) interop. mt. gov. The topic that was most similarly discussed was the importance of implementing a communication plan both internally and externally in any type of project management. Colorado. ov noted that “28% of projects fail due to poor communications, that’s 1 out of 4 projects fail due to poor communications” (Jones, 2007). This site went on to speak about the top reasons projects fail includes poor communication, insufficient resource planning, unrealistic schedules and poor project requirements. The California Department of Transportation website noted that project communication includes general communication between team members but is more encompassing. It utilizes a Work Breakdown Structure (WBS) for a framework of communication that is customer and product focused with the end in mind, and it involves all levels of the organization” (Office of Project Management Process Improvement, 2007). This organization also believes that Project Communication is the responsibility of everyone on the project team. The Interoperability Governing Board for Montana’s communications planning first determines the information and communications needs of the stakeholders.

This includes identifying who needs what information, when they should receive it, and how it will be provided. Identifying the information needs of the stakeholders and determining a suitable means of meeting those needs is an important factor for project success. “Actively managing stakeholders increases the likelihood that the project will not veer off track due to unresolved stakeholder issues, enhances the ability of persons to operate synergistically, and limits disruptions during the project” (Northrop Grumman Corporation, 2007).

The main subject of all these sites I researched came down to the importance of effective communication, and stating that it is the most important ingredient for project success. Participation, understanding, and the ability to adapt the project – all of which require well? functioning communication ? are critical to the end result of the project. Build a Management-driven Communication Culture Internal communication planning is one of the most neglected areas of strategic planning.

Most companies spend a great deal of money and effort on their external communication plan but fail to expend any energy toward creating an organized plan for internal communication (Roehler, 2007). Determining what should be communicated to staff, when it should be communicated, and how it should be communicated is often left up to the decision of individuals made when there seems to be a need. In other words internal communication strategies are developed, reactively, when there is a crisis or major event that clearly requires addressing communication issues.

Where communication is planned out, it is often around upheavals like major corporate or organization change, layoffs and downsizing, and technological change. However, once the initiating focus has been eliminated communication tends to go back to an unorganized jumbled process (Bacal, 2008). It is a bit of a mystery why this occurs, but there is no question that strategic internal communication planning can be a proactive approach to building a better, more directed and efficient workforce.

Communication is a key component in coordinating and tracking project schedules, issues, and action items. The plan maps out the flow of information to different stakeholders and becomes an integral part of the overall project plan (Gray & Larson, 2011). Implementing a well thought out communications plan will help manage expectations regarding the project, ensure methods used for communication will be most effective, and assure appropriate levels of communication with internal and external project stakeholders.

In addition, well laid out communication plans provide relevant, accurate, consistent information at all times, and most importantly, generate and sustain enthusiasm and support for the project. References Bacal, R. (2008). Internal communication strategies. Performance Management and Appraisal Help Center. Retrieved from http://www. prpundit. com/knowledge/employee%20communications/Internal%20Communications. pdf Gray, C. F. , & Larson, E. W. (2011). Project management: The managerial process (5th ed. ). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. ISBN-13:

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Maersk Doha Communcation Report

1 – Shannon and Weaver’s Communications model seems to be a perfect fit for the Maersk Doha’s problems on board as there were several instances when language caused miscommunications between crew members and messages where delivered incorrectly. This highlights that not all messages received are identical to the message that was sent or to put it in simpler terms it can almost be described as a game of Chinese whispers. First off we are told that when the emergency occurred and the chief engineer was not informed quickly enough.

This could be down to the incompetence of the engineers or more likely that there was a lack of communication commodities available to them. We were also told that the chief engineer was in a difficult position when it came to communication as he spoke a different language from the rest of the crew. This then created a hindrance upon the crew who were tasked with trying to understand and relay what the chief engineer was saying and along with the background noise, this proved to be difficult and thus caused confusion.

2- A big problem was the communication barrier between the engineering and deck departments. If a structured communications procedure had been in place, the damage could and probably would have been limited to a minimum. Problems arose as the engine crew didn’t report to the chief engineer and the chief didn’t report to the captain. Obviously if the senior staff are not made aware of the problems then they can’t be solved in a proper manor. It’s of utmost importance that the correct procedure where carried out when dealing with safety issues.

On this occasion a threat occurred due to an inexperienced crew, reluctant to communicate with their superiors. All departments should have been working towards a joint goal instead there seemed to be departmental friction and the link of horizontal communication was inadequate. Having an inexperienced first and second engineer helped lead to not only mechanical problems occurring but also further problems in communication. The shipping company had decided all crew had a satisfactory level of English but this was not the case and the language barrier acted as a catalyst to the reason the fire was not dealt with properly.

4 – It is clear that there were problems in all directional flows. The downward communication was ineffective. The chief engineer should have asserted his authority and created a line of communication between his staff. Although the language barrier sometimes prevented proper flow in information there should have been procedures in place in case of emergency to insure the crew could contact him with any problems. The upward communication was also found inadequate as the crew should have been responsible enough to notify the chief engineer that there was a fire in the economiser and that perhaps due to their naivety and lack of experience they did not want to alert the chief and been seen as incompetent.

The engineers where not familiar with the machinery and should have contacted the chief as early as possible. On the other hand the chief is also guilty of miscommunication when it came to the deck department. It is imperative that both departments work together and help as much as possible and it’s also necessary to regularly keep up to date with each other’s departments. This is the reason companies create procedures and flow charts that must be adhered by whilst on board.

If the system was flawed then the chief should have designed a new communication procedure in order to keep communication flowing between all involved 4 – Its clear to say that the communication environment is heavily affected by the presence of so much background noise. There were problems with both the technical and social aspects of noise. Semantic barriers also lead to a negative influence on the environment.

The information required regarding the economiser was available to the crew but due to this being from the ships previous owner and it not being endorsed by ZMA, there was confusion regarding what documents and procedures were to be followed. If ZMA had constructed their own policy, adding any information they did not carry over from the previous owner, this might have helped avoid the ensuing problems.

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Communication Today

Many people have started taking short cuts in our modern world. The human population is doing everything they can to speed through life. One such short cut is the way society communicates. Though out the last several decades the technology that has connected all walks of life has dramatically changed, it went from word of mouth to the written word, to telephones and beyond. Now texting and wall postings are forms of communicating with friends and family all over the world. Many believe that these kinds of networks are destroying our communications as a society. However, these networks allow people to stay in constant connection with many people at once, they are convenient, and safe to use.

Social networking sites like Facebook, Myspace and many others connect people to all their friends and extended family members all at once in a number of ways. One such way is by statuses update which is when people say what is on their minds or what they might be doing that day. Another is posting pictures of just about anything so that family members who otherwise wouldn’t see them until a get together if at all could see them. People who are no longer near their loved ones benefit the most from these status updates. This constantly updated form of communication is almost as good as being with the loved one.

With people all over the world using networking sites they have become more excusable, from being available at local public libraries to the convenience of being at the ready on a personal cell phone or other hand held devices free of charge. The convenience this has added allows people to not only update their statues at any time, but also post pictures of what is going on in their daily lives on the spot no matter where they are from their wireless devices. This enables all the friends and family connected to that persons page to know what is going on in someone’s life who they may not get a chance to talk to on a daily bases.

Facebook as well as many other sites are very safe to use (if the proper measures are taken) that everyone has started making pages, from kids in middle school all the way up to those kids grandparents. Such sites allows the user to set it up their page anyway they want. They give many choices on who is allowed to view that particular page. The options consist of blocking the page from everyone who is not on the user’s friends list and not being able to be found in a search, to having a completely open page where anyone can see all that the sight as to offer. 
Most of these sights also have restrictions to where would be users are blocked from using the sites at all, or with other such precautions

Everyday people are becoming afraid that our communication between friends and families are breaking down a little more every second. This is simply not true; in fact it is the opposite because of how rapidly technology is changing it allowing us to communicate at any given moment with all our friends and family. With statues updates and wall postings at our finger tips we are more connected at any given moment now than ever before. Sites like Myspace, Facebook, and many other are the main way that people in today’s society communicate do to the face that as a group we are speeding through life at warp speed.

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Mass Communications

In the past 10 years, mass communications underwent perhaps one of the most profound revolutions in their history, matched perhaps by the arrival of the telegraph and the telephone. Technology changes affect who we reach and in what ways. They also affect our entertainment and the way we spend free time.

The most notable change has certainly been the Internet. Its vast online spaces have made tons of information easily available to masses of people who previously would find difficult and costly to obtain information of similar quality from other sources. In this way, the Internet democratized communication between people, making writing cheaper through e-mail and making voice connections more accessible through Internet telephony and programs like Skype. I regularly use Skype and e-mail to reach my relatives in other countries, and this makes our communication much easier.

The use of online communication has also provided people with immense opportunities to address large audiences without considerable expense of starting one’s own media project. To make a site that will deliver content and the author’s news to large groups of people is very easy and inexpensive. This helps overcome the problem of freedom of speech that many saw in the world where media were owned and governed by rich tycoons. The critics of such freedom noted that it did not provide for “freedom of expression” of those who are not commercial film producers or media barons” (Iyer, 2004). Today, one can air political or social views without investing a lot of money.

Blogs are yet another way to make one’s views known to a group of people and make an online community, getting new friends. In 2005, Business Week reported that “there are some 9 million blogs out there, with 40,000 new ones popping up each day” (Baker, Green, 2005).

I tried once to start a diary at LiveJournal.com, but soon got tired of writing there and could not find many people to read my writing. I believe myself to be a slow adopter, although when technical improvements in communication get popular, I do begin to use them.
References

Baker, S., & Green, H. (2005, May). Blogs Will Change Your Business. Business Week. Retrieved August 29, 2006

College of Communication, the University of Texas at Austin. Thoughts about the Future of Advertising. A White Paper by the Faculty, Department of Advertising. Retrieved August 29, 2006, from http://www.ciadvertising.org/studies/reports/future/whitepap.html

Iyer, V. R. (2004, July). ‘Culture Cops’ and the mass media. Retrieved August 29, 2006, from http://www.indiatogether.org/2004/jul/med-copmedia.htm

 

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Interpersonal Communications in Sweet Home Alabama

In Interpersonal Communications, it is important to understand how stereotyping can affect close relationships. When an individual uses stereotyping in a negative way, this in return negatively affects the relationship. This can lead to major problems in the long run. In Sweet Home Alabama, it is easy to see that false stereotypes lead to judgments reflecting badly on relationships. The clip shown of Sweet Home Alabama starts off with Melanie Carmichael, a fashion designer who is about to have her first runway show.

After the runway show she has to go with her boyfriend, Andrew, to an event involving his mother, the mayor of New York City. On the way, Andrew surprises her with an engagement proposal. Although she says yes, she asks to keep it a secret until she can visit her parents. He agrees to let her visit home by herself to break the good news to them, before letting it become a public announcement. This is until his mom notices the engagement ring on Melanie’s finger and freaks out. Pictures of the three of them spread to all of the tabloids saying they’re engaged!

She takes the first plane back to Alabama. This is when we find out that she actually has a husband, Jake, who refuses to sign the divorce papers. Although she is determined to get him to sign the papers, he still turns her down. He calls the sheriff and Melanie gets sent to jail where she has to call her parents. Her dad picks her up, and she tells them about the engagement. Melanie’s parents do not seem to approve, as they have not seen her since she left Jake seven years ago. They still think that her and Jake should be together. Many things can lead to a false judgment on another person.

One term in particular that often leads to judgment and interpersonal communication problems is stereotyping. Stereotyping is to take a general characteristic of a certain group, and assume that every individual that belongs to that group takes on that characteristic. People stereotype because it simplifies the process of perception. Once you find out that a person belongs to a certain group, it’s easier to just assume they take on the implied characteristics that go with that group to form an easier impression. This often leads to problems, because it “leads us to form flawed impressions of others” (McCornack, 2010, p. 00). An example of this is the idea that all African Americans are criminals. A person that is stereotypical would see an African American on the street and be scared that they are going to mug them. As you can see, this hurts the process of interpersonal communication. It hurts the process because if someone judges everyone they meet based on a stereotype, it will be hard for them to connect with anyone. It will also be difficult to for interpersonal relationships with others. In one specific scene of Sweet Home Alabama, Melanie has just arrived at Jakes house to ask him to sign the divorce papers.

After she says that she needs them signed so that she can get on her way and go home, he refuses. He tells her to go home and see her parents before he even will consider talking about signing the papers. He then goes inside as she replies, “Jake, you dumb stubborn redneck hick, the only reason you won’t sign these papers is because I want you to! ” He exclaims, “WRONG! The only reason I ain’t signing is because you’ve turned into some hoity toity Yankee bitch, and I’d like nothing more than to piss you off! ” Throughout this whole ordeal, the two are making facial expressions depicting anger and annoyance.

Also they are extremely verbally aggressive towards each other. In this scene, both Melanie and Jake use stereotypes against each other. Melanie calls Jake a redneck hick, saying that he is stubborn and stupid. This could be considered a stereotype because the label redneck hick is often associated with being stupid and hard headed. In the heat of the moment, she uses this to relieve anger and insult Jake. He then rebuttals by calling her a Yankee bitch and saying she has become hoity toity. People from the north or “Yankees” often have the reputation of being arrogant and rude.

Jake is calling her a hoity toity Yankee bitch because he thinks that since she moved away she has become someone she’s not. Although they used to be in love and married they use these hurtful stereotypes to get their point across. The point of the stereotype usage is to hurt the other and the outcome is anger and even a little hurt. Melanie and Jake’s communication was competent in some areas, while incompetent in others. When it comes to appropriateness, they would both be incompetent. In the situation that they are in, both should be calm and acting like adults.

Although many divorces get ugly, initially signing the papers should generally be done in a civilized manner. Instead they both would be considered as having low- self monitors because they are just stating exactly what is on their mind. However, in terms of effectiveness they were both competent in their instrumental goal. Melanie gets it across very clearly that she wants Jake to sign the papers, while he makes it clear that he doesn’t plan on signing them. For the couple’s self-presentational goals they are clear that they do not like each other very much when they begin fighting.

Melanie shows that she wants Jake to sign the papers so she can get on with her life. She wants to break the connection between them and she attempts to, but fails at her relational goals when Jake won’t sign the papers. He succeeds at his relational goals in that he does not want to give in and sign the papers ending their marriage. When it comes to ethics, they were both extremely hostile and over exaggerated leading to incompetency in this category of interpersonal communication. In order to have had more competent communication, Melanie should have been calm and composed when asking Jake to sign the papers.

When he began to refuse, she should have reasoned with him and gotten him to agree without using judgmental words towards each other. As shown in Sweet Home Alabama, stereotyping others can lead to false judgments and even hurt feelings. This portrayed in the scene that I chose to analyze. Melanie and Jake made false stereotypes about each other by calling one another hurtful names that did not apply. This taught me that although it is just easier to assume stereotypes are true, you should not always be so quick to judge. paper 1 grade sheet introduction (4 pts. ) Did you describe the purpose of your paper?

Did you mention the concept you will be analyzing? Did you adequately describe what happened in the movie excerpt? introduction4 pts. possible_____ body (28 pts. ) Did you clearly and correctly define and explain the course concept you selected? Was your explanation complete enough for the sake of understanding the later analysis? course concept explanation7 pts. possible_____ Did you give a concise, yet vivid, description of the relevant scene(s) you selected for analysis? Was your explanation of the communication behaviors accurate and detailed with respect to the relevant verbal and nonverbal messages? cene & communication description7 pts. possible_____ Was your application and analysis of the course concept complete, thorough, and accurate? Did you discuss how the communication impacted relational outcomes between the characters? interpretation & analysis7 pts. possible_____ Was your evaluation of interpersonal communication competence insightful? Did you address appropriateness, effectiveness, and ethics in your analysis? Were your recommendations for improvement specific, accurate, and relevant to course material? IPC competence & recommendations7 pts. possible_____ conclusion (4 pts. Did you do a nice job of summarizing your paper and analysis? Did you explain what you learned from conducting the analysis? Was your explanation insightful? conclusion4 pts. possible_____ general writing issues (4 pts. ) Is your paper well written? Is it free of typos, spelling errors, and other proofreading mistakes? Is your paper coherent, thorough, complete, and informative? writing4 pts. possible_____ concept approval (-4 points) Did you neglect to secure approval of your chosen concept by your TA’s specified due date? If so, 4 points will be deducted from your grade. TOTAL (out of 40 pts. )_____