Archive for March, 2011

Fukushima in Focus: A collection of coverage

March 31, 2011

From Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

The Bulletin publishes a collection of analysis and opinion pieces from the world’s top experts; it aggregates these writings to create a valuable resource for readers.


Confirmation that stressed people can’t resist the temptation of a cigarette

March 30, 2011

Stress decreases the ability to resist smoking and potentiates smoking intensity and reward


From Journal of Psychopharmacology


Despite tobacco being responsible for 5.4 million deaths per year and well publicized as one of the most preventable causes of mortality in the developed world, many of us still reach for a cigarette at the first sign of stress. Using a novel human laboratory model this study examined stress as a causal factor in accounts of smoking relapse, identifying a clear link between stress and reduced ability to resist smoking. The findings of this research have implications for understanding motivation as well as the putative value of tobacco, and point to a potential mechanism underlying stress-precipitated relapse behavior.


Happiness in youth comes from excitement, in maturity from contentment

March 29, 2011

The shifting meaning of happiness

From Social Psychological and Personality Science

This article reveals that for some people, excitement leads to happiness, and for others, nothing brings happiness so much as a peaceful life. Which you prefer depends on how old you are, and whether you focus on living in the moment or planning for the future. The researches trawled blogs searching for examples where authors expressed feelings of happiness, using the word ‘happy’ and where the bloggers age could be identified. For the youngest bloggers, “happy sentences” tended to include excitement words like ecstatic, giddy, excited and elated. But as bloggers got older, fewer excitement words were used. Instead their happy sentences contained words like relaxed, calm, peaceful, and relieved. It suggests that in youth happiness comes more from excitement, from looking toward the future, from planning possibilities and making them real. With age, happiness comes more from calm and contentment, and living most fully in the present. As we age the things that make us happy shift from future possibilities to appreciating the now.


Eating tomatoes each day keeps the doctor away

March 24, 2011

Tomato Consumption and Health: Emerging Benefits

From American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine

Researchers looked at the role tomato products play in health and disease risk reduction. Results indicate that eating more tomatoes and tomato products can make people healthier and decrease the risk of conditions such as cancer, osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease. The article is particularly timely since the recently released Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010 moved tomatoes to a newly established category of “orange/red” fruits and vegetables to encourage higher consumption of these healthy foods.


Do the benefits of nuclear power outweigh the risks?: A time for Japan to review its policies?

March 23, 2011

The Challenge of Climate Change and Energy Policies for Building a Sustainable Society in Japan

From Organization & Environment 

In response to last week’s earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the role and safety risks of nuclear power are being reassessed globally. The 1990s witnessed an unprecedented recognition that environmental problems were occurring at a global level. Demonstrating Japan’s commitment to the Kyoto Protocol it switched from fossil fuels to nuclear power as its primary energy source. Nuclear power has become central to its climate change and energy policies. The shift to secure increasing energy demand instead of reducing energy consumption has been widely criticised. Through an in-depth analysis of Japan’s climate change policy, this study assesses to what extent Japan has succeeded in environmental reforms without generating other environmental impacts to provide insight into this debate. Are the recent devastating events in Japan a warning to review its nuclear policies?


Brains plus beauty don’t add up: objectifying women lowers their math performance

March 22, 2011

When what you see is what you get: the consequences of the objectifying gaze for women and men

From Psychology of Women Quarterly

Women who are looked at as sexual objects not only react as sexual objects, they also exhibit less proficiency with math, according to this research. Undergraduates from a large Midwestern university were studied; findings suggest that the objectifying gaze affected women’s behavior and lowered performance, but not men’s. The authors observe “The objectifying gaze is particularly problematic for women, it may lead to a vicious cycle in which women are first objectified and, as a result, underperform, confirming the notion that women’s looks are more important than what they can do.”


Gorbachev’s lessons from Chernobyl are valuable in light of Japan’s nuclear crisis

March 18, 2011

Chernobyl 25 years later: Many lessons learned 

From Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists

Dramatic events over the last week have produced heartbreaking images from Japan as its people face unimaginable adversity. In the wake of an earthquake of historic proportions, a tsunami of biblical scale and now potentially a nuclear emergency of terrifying magnitude, the ripples of fear span the globe. Natural disaster has collided with manmade hazard and this may prompt a full-scale nuclear meltdown. Many governments on the brink of a nuclear rebirth have been forced to reassess their nuclear strategy. Germany has already shut down some nuclear plants while it reconsiders its approach.

In a piece recently featured on SAGE Insight, we highlight again this timely essay from the former Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev, contributed to a special issue – Chernobyl 25 years later where he looks back at the catastrophic accident in 1986 at the Chernobyl nuclear power station in Ukraine and writes how, two and a half decades later, the nuclear accident offers many lessons for preventing, managing, and recovering from such a horrible event.


The technology of modeling has changed the future of warfare

March 17, 2011

Special issue: The Peace Support Operations Model: Stabilisation Strategy

From Journal of Defense Modeling and Simulation: Applications, Methodology, Technology

Technology via modeling is changing the way we approach military operations. This special issue looks at the Peace Support Operations Model (PSOM). Created originally in 2004 as a dedicated analytical program to study ‘problem space’, the model has evolved from a ‘simple’ Excel spreadsheet tool to a more interactive, player-friendly war-game with increased functionality and wide application. Articles examine the philosophies and concepts that underpin the model and consider future developments, recognizing that model-based war is the way forward.


UK doctors opposition of euthanasia is at odds with public opinion and a current high profile celebrity backed campaign

March 16, 2011

Attitudes of UK doctors towards euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide: A systematic literature review


From Palliative Medicine

Actor Sir Patrick Stewart and author Ian McEwan are just a couple of the stars who have pledged their support to a campaign calling for a change in the law on assisted dying in the UK. Dignity in Dying, which aims to legalise the choice of assisted dying for terminally ill, mentally competent adults, said the trio of new patrons were among more than 30 additional high profile supporters of their campaign in the last 12 months.Sir Patrick said: “We have no control over how we arrive in the world but at the end of a life we should have control over how we leave it.” The issue has been a subject for great public debate over recent years particularly sparked by the support for Dignitas a Swiss assisted dying group that helps those with terminal illness and severe physical and mental illnesses to die with dignity, assisted by qualified doctors and nurses.

This paper reviews studies from 2 decades that assess the attitudes of UK doctors concerning active, voluntary euthanasia (AVE) and physician-assisted suicide (PAS). It examines the trail of legislation and concludes from the data studied, UK doctors appear to oppose the introduction of AVE and PAS, This position seems to conflict with that of the UK public. Increased religiosity is seen as the strongest predictor of a negative attitude towards assisted death. The provision of palliative care is seen by most doctors as the important thing to focus on, reducing suffering and the need for assisted dying.


SAGE opens access to articles in celebration of World Social Work Day

March 15, 2011

World Social Work Day 15th March 2011 focuses on social work contributions to society and is part of an on-going dialogue about how to address challenging social conditions worldwide. The theme this year is “Social Work voices responding to global crisises: Together we develop the  Agenda!“. To celebrate this day SAGE has opened access to some journal articles for a limited period. SAGE is proud to publish a Social Work portfolio that includes the journals International Social Work, Journal of Social Work, and Research on Social Work Practice, plus a comprehensive books programme that spans the diverse field. (more…)

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