Browsing by Subject "developing countries"

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  • Huhtamäki, Lotta (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    China has become an important global actor, especially as a partner for countries of the Global South, and it is possible that China will attempt to become a hegemonic world power. This thesis focuses on the possible hegemonic ambitions of the People’s Republic of China and examines the way China frames the international environment and itself as an international actor. Through framing analysis, this thesis seeks to find out what China’s international ambitions are and how they could affect the Global South. A neo-Gramscian framework is utilised to interpret the Chinese rhetoric as an attempt at gathering international support from developing countries for possible pursuit of international hegemony. This thesis features a framing analysis of official Chinese rhetoric. The analysis of a White paper on China’s position in the world and six speeches by high-level Chinese officials concentrates on how China frames international issues and what kind of solutions China proposes. Attention is paid to specific strategies that are used to mobilise support from the developing country audiences and to empower and legitimise China as an international leader. The results reveal two distinct frames presented in the Chinese rhetoric: a frame of global inequality and a frame of common human progress. Blame for current global issues is attributed to the Global North and China is consistently framed as a benevolent, moral actor. The Chinese proposal for a new, more just international order is framed as an expression of the common will of humanity and as a logical result of common human progress. The history of Third World solidarity is employed as a rhetorical tool to convince the Global South of China’s good intentions and trustworthiness. China seems to be trying to gain support from the Global South for its international political agenda. The agenda is presented as advancing the shared interest of the Global South: development. However, when analysing the Chinese rhetoric from a world system theory viewpoint, the promise of development seems empty. The Chinese political programme seems to uphold the existing international system and aims to achieve incremental improvements within it. This could result in some degree of development in some areas, but it does not provide a solution for global poverty and underdevelopment.
  • Sistonen, Sonja (Helsingfors universitet, 2017)
    In recent years, the Laos economy – driven by the primary sector – has been growing fast, however poverty remains widespread. Economic growth is also influencing the livelihoods of rural people who account for 61% of Lao population and depend highly on forests and environmental resources. Many studies address the role of NTFPs in rural livelihoods globally but the total contribution of forests and environmental resources, and the associated changes in their access and availability, have generally been neglected, also in Laos. The overarching research question of this study aims to determine how dependent rural Lao livelihoods are on forest and environmental products by estimating their contribution in total household income and food security. The other objectives are i) to find out which forest and environmental products households are the most dependent on, ii) to compare NTFPs and timber in their contribution to livelihoods, and iii) to learn how the access to, and the number of, forest products has changed in the past and whether they are expected to change in the future. The primary data used in this study was collected in Mahaxay District, Central Lao PDR in March 2016. Altogether 90 randomly selected households were interviewed using semi-structured surveys in three sample villages purposefully selected along a remoteness gradient. In addition, two focus group discussions (one male and one female) and one key informant interview were conducted in each village to collect village-level background information. It was found that the sample households rely heavily on forests and the environment, especially for food products. In the most remote village 80% of the households would not have had enough to eat without the contribution of NTFPs in their nutrition. On average forest and environmental products contributed to 12% of the cash income of the households interviewed. The cash-equivalent value of subsistence income from forest and environmental products is higher than that of cash income from their sales all three sample villages. There were significant differences between the villages: the poorest village was also the most dependent on forest products for both cash and subsistence income. NTFPs were remarkably more important than timber for both subsistence and cash income. Bamboo shoots, firewood and mushrooms were the most collected forest products. Fallow was the most important land-use type for forest and environmental product collection. There was a strong decrease in both access to forest products and their availability in the past five years, and most sample households also expected the trend of decline to continue into the future. The kind of reliance on forests and wild lands described in this study is threatened by population growth, deforestation and forest degradation associated with Laos’ rapid economic transition. The strong dependency of the rural Lao population on forest and environmental income should be considered also by the Lao government in the aim for green economic transition.
  • Simula, Markku (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1985)
  • Riihinen, Päiviö (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1986)
  • Kiljunen, Kimmo (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1986)
  • Kivipuro, Suvi (2001)
    This essay aims at providing a framework for evaluating the desirability of stronger intellectual property rights in developing countries. Instead of assuming that product imitation in the developing countries happens through observation and reverse engineering, the emphasis is on active technology transfer. Foreign direct investment and technology licensing are evaluated here in a unified outline to find out the growth effect of intellectual property protection regime change. The main sources are articles by E. L.-C. Lai (1998) and G. Yang and K. Maskus (2001). By assumption the model consists of two countries, North and South, and all innovations are carried out in North. Innovative Northern companies choose to outsource production to South to gain from lower production costs. Due to inexistent or weak intellectual property protection the Northern foreign direct investment or licensing venture faces the threat of imitation. Choosing licensing allows innovators to combat the problem with costly licensing contracts. Yet naturally both types of technology transfer would benefit from better intellectual property protection and less imitation. If technology transfer to South occurs either through licensing or foreign direct investment, South should strengthen its intellectual property rights protection, as both countries will gain. Improved protection curbs the imitation activity and thus encourages more Northern companies to invest in South. As resources are freed in North and the expected return from innovations rises, new incentives to innovate emerge. Increased innovation corresponds to economic growth not only in North but also in South via technology transfer. Southern workers learn while employed by the multinational enterprises or licensees. The resulting knowledge spillovers support worldwide gain from better intellectual property protection.
  • Koljonen, Kauko (Suomen metsätieteellinen seura, 1983)
  • Sauru, Miro (Helsingin yliopisto, 2020)
    Healthcare in developing countries is still far from Western standards. The shortage of healthcare professionals and the lack of basic hygiene lead to millions of lost lives and life years annually. A person born to a developing country has less both quantitative and qualitative life years to expect. The main objective of health development aid is to improve the availability of medicine and healthcare while reducing mortality and increasing the quality of life. Development aid is an international effort which can be viewed as a moral obligation for industrial countries with high standards of life, but also as pragmatic Realpolitik aiming for higher global political stability. Efficient development aid requires careful planning, perseverance and multidisciplinary collaboration. Inefficiently given aid can lead to increased corruption, inequality and even slower development of the aided country. Different types of hearing loss are the greatest cause of disability globally. Infectious diseases are an exceptionally relevant cause of hearing loss in developing countries. A hearing loss in children can not only lead to problems in learning to read and write, but also to impairment in cognitive abilities, social exclusion and low socio-economic status. World Health Organization estimates six in ten childhood hearing impairments, including their secondary effects, to be preventable. In the following thesis, I will examine different types of health development aid with examples from otorhinolaryngology. I have taken Tanzania under closer examination, as it has been a primary recipient for Finnish development aid in otorhinolaryngology for the past 50 years. Additionally, I will present views about development aid and its future from both Finnish aid workers’ and Tanzanian doctors’ perspectives.
  • Vila-Real, Catarina Pereira de Melo; Pimenta-Martins, Ana Sofia; Kunyanga, Catherine Nkirote; Mbugua, Samuel Kuria; Katina, Kati; Maina, Ndegwa Henry; Gomes, Ana Maria Pereira; Pinto, Elisabete Cristina Bastos (2022)
    Urbanisation is hastening the transition from traditional food habits to less healthy diets, which are becoming more common among Kenyans. No up-to-date studies on usual dietary intake and the main food sources of adult Kenyans are available. The aim of the present study was to identify the main food sources of nutrients in the diet of urban adult Kenyans and explore potential associations with demographic variables including age, sex, level of education, occupation and body mass index. The study adopted a cross-sectional design. The dietary intake of 486 adult Kenyans from Nairobi was assessed using a validated, culture-sensitive, semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire. Binary logistic regression models were used to evaluate associations between food sources and demographic variables. Macronutrient intakes as a proportion of total energy intake (TEI) were within international dietary guidelines. Cereals and grain products (34.0%), sugar, syrups, sweets and snacks (9.8%), fruits (9.7%) and meat and eggs (8.8%) were the major contributors to TEI. Cereals and grain products contributed 42.5% to carbohydrates, followed by fruits (12.4%) and sugar, syrups, sweets and snacks (10.6%). The most important sources of protein and total fat were cereals and grain products (23.3% and 19.7%, respectively) and meat and eggs (22.0% and 18.7%, respectively). Sex, age and level of education were associated with the choice of food groups. Although macronutrient intakes were within guidelines, the Kenyan diet was revealed to be high in sugars, salt and fibre, with differences in food sources according to demographic variables. These results can act as an incentive to national authorities to implement nutritional strategies aiming to raise awareness of healthier dietary patterns among Kenyans.
  • Pelkonen, Tuula; dos Santos, Mauro Dias; Roine, Irmeli; dos Anjos, Elisabete; Freitas, Cesar; Peltola, Heikki; Laakso, Sanna; Kirveskari, Juha (2018)
    Background: Globally, diarrhea kills almost 1500 children daily. In diagnostics, molecular methods are replacing traditional assays. We aimed to investigate enteropathogens in children with and without diarrhea in Luanda, the capital of Angola. Methods: One hundred and ninety-four stool samples from 98 children with acute diarrhea and 96 children without diarrhea were investigated for 17 enteropathogens with multiplex real-time polymerase chain reaction. Results: The median age of children was 10.5 months. Enteropathogens, bacteria, viruses and parasites were detected in 91%, 78%, 50% and 25%, respectively. A positive finding was significantly (P = 0.003) more common in diarrhea when testing for all pathogens combined, for bacteria alone and for viruses alone. More than one pathogen was found more frequently in diarrhea than in non-diarrhea stool samples, in 87% and in 59% (P <0.0001), respectively. The median number (interquartile range) of pathogens detected was 3 (2) versus 1.5 (2; P <0.0001), respectively. When age was taken into account, diarrhea was found to be associated with enterotoxigenic and enteroaggregative Escherichia coli, Shigella, Campylobacter, rotavirus, sapovirus and Cryptosporidium. Conclusions: Multiplex polymerase chain reaction detected enteropathogens in almost all stool samples of children in Luanda, albeit this occurred more often in diarrhea. Children with diarrhea showed more mixed infections than children without diarrhea.
  • Makkonen, Eedla (Helsingin yliopisto, 2019)
    Laos is one of the poorest countries in South-East Asia. Rural people’s livelihoods are mostly reliant on rice production and collection of forest products. There is very little research available about large-scale tree plantations and agroforestry in Laos. However, there is a clear need for information about the livelihood of the local people affected by companies that lease land from the local rural population for large-scale plantations in Laos. Stora Enso (SE) has trial plantations in Laos that combine tree-growing and food production. The Stora Enso Village Program (SEVP) focuses on sustainability that includes community engagement and helping local villagers to farm in safe conditions. The main aim of this study was to assess the productivity of taungya agroforestry systems in the SEVP trial plantations, and to measure the socioeconomic impacts at the village and household level. The following research questions are addressed: 1. To describe the Stora Enso Village Program in Laos, 2. To evaluate the conditions of the plantations established by SE in six villages in Saravan and Savannakhet Provinces, 3. To evaluate the socioeconomic impacts of the village program at the household and village levels in terms of: i) What kind of incomes do the local families get? ii ) How have the agricultural activities, which are part of the taungya agroforestry system, affected plantation productivity? iii) Who is benefiting from Stora Enso’s “village program” and how? Six research villages were selected, including five villages where Stora Enso operates and one where the company does not operate. Biophysical plantation measurements were done in 28 study plots in five villages. Plantation production was measured from the trees in the taungya agroforestry areas in each village. In each trial village, the Village Head was interviewed about basic village information such as population, livelihood and geographic information. Two Focus Group Discussions were conducted in each village, with information about villagers’ livelihoods and changes to livelihoods after the SEVP was started in the village. Participatory mapping exercises were carried out to determine the location of the households in the villages for random household selection. Interviews were conducted in 15 households in each village (90 households in total) to gather household-specific information such as incomes, livelihood activities and experiences of the taungya agroforestry sites. Village crop production in the taungya agroforestry sites were estimated at the household level. Results showed that employment opportunities increased in the village mostly in the first years of plantation cycle. The villagers were pleased with the land preparation carried out by Stora Enso and the crop yield in agroforestry areas, however, this was limited to when the plantation trees were smaller. Lack of labour, shade from plantation trees, and long distances to the plantation areas were the main reasons why villagers did not use the plantation areas for crop production. Plantations were generally in good condition, however, there were some insect and other stem damages. Lack of agricultural machinery and big distances from households to the agroforestry areas led to variation between villages´ crop production. There was limited work available for the villagers who wanted to work. The key findings of this thesis highlight the benefits of extra incomes and work opportunities for the local people in the villages and the positive outcomes in terms of the SEVP funds being used to build infrastructure and schools for the villages. The result of the study shows that the location of the villages affected negatively on villages that were far away from the market place and had limited possibilities to sell surplus crops. Cash crop production only occurred in the villages near the main roads and markets. Long distance to the taungya agroforestry area also limited the usage of the areas. This study has shown how the SEVP provides some benefits at both the village level and the household level. At the village level - positive impacts from village fund include improved infrastructure such as roads, water systems and electricity, while at the household level, positive impacts include employment opportunities and support to grow crops in the taungya agroforestry system. However, there are also challenges and limitations, such as agroforestry potential for producing crops between tree rows are not fully utilized during tree rotation, and most of the plantation employment opportunities are only available in the first years of plantation establishment. The SEVP is a trial program that attempts to integrate local communities’ needs by producing food and cash crops in the plantation area. The concept needs further development, more trials and research to improve the system, but has potential to be replicated in other places. It needs to be designed to suit the specific context of the local communities according to local culture and needs.
  • Rugemalira, Emilie; Roine, Irmeli; Kuligowski, Julia; Sanchez-Illana, Angel; David Pineiro-Ramos, Jose; Andersson, Sture; Peltola, Heikki; Leite Cruzeiro, Manuel; Pelkonen, Tuula; Vento, Maximo (2019)
    The immunological response in bacterial meningitis (BM) causes the formation of reactive oxygen and nitrogen species (ROS, RNS) and activates myeloperoxidase (MPO), an inflammatory enzyme. Thus, structural oxidative and nitrosative damage to proteins and DNA occurs. We aimed to asses these events in the cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) of pediatric BM patients. Phenylalanine (Phe), para-tyrosine (p-Tyr), nucleoside 2'-deoxiguanosine (2dG), and biomarkers of ROS/RNS-induced protein and DNA oxidation: ortho-tyrosine (o-Tyr), 3-chlorotyrosine (3Cl-Tyr), 3-nitrotyrosine (3NO(2)-Tyr) and 8-oxo-2'-deoxyguanosine (8OHdG), concentrations were measured by liquid chromatography coupled to tandem mass spectrometry in the initial CSF of 79 children with BM and 10 without BM. All biomarkers, normalized with their corresponding precursors, showed higher median concentrations (p <0.0001) in BM compared with controls, except 8OHdG/2dG. The ratios o-Tyr/Phe, 3Cl-Tyr/p-Tyr and 3NO(2)-Tyr/p-Tyr were 570, 20 and 4.5 times as high, respectively. A significantly higher 3Cl-Tyr/p-Tyr ratio was found in BM caused by Streptococcus pneumoniae, than by Haemophilus influenzae type b, or Neisseria meningitidis (p = 0.002 for both). In conclusion, biomarkers indicating oxidative damage to proteins distinguished BM patients from non-BM, most clearly the o-Tyr/Phe ratio. The high 3Cl-Tyr/p-Tyr ratio in pneumococcal meningitis suggests robust inflammation because 3Cl-Tyr is a marker of MPO activation and, indirectly, of inflammation.
  • Gani, Shahzad; Pant, Pallavi; Sarkar, Sayantan; Sharma, Neha; Dey, Sagnik; Guttikunda, Sarath K; AchutaRao, Krishna M; Nygard, Jostein; Sagar, Ambuj D (2022)
  • Korhonen-Kurki, Kaisa; Brockhaus, Maria; Sehring, Jenniver; Di Gregorio, Monica; Assembe-Mvondo, Samuel; Babon, Andrea; Bekele, Mr Melaku; Benn, Vanessa; Gebara, Maria Fernanda; Kambire, Hermann; Kengoum, Felicien; Maharani, Cynthia; Menton, Mary; Ochieng, Robert M.; Paudel, Naya Sharma; Pham, Thuy Thu; Dkamela, Guy Patrice; Sitoe, Almeida (2019)
    Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD+) has emerged as a promising climate change mitigation mechanism in developing countries. In order to identify the enabling conditions for achieving progress in the implementation of an effective, efficient and equitable REDD+, this paper examines national policy settings in a comparative analysis across 13 countries with a focus on both institutional context and the actual setting of the policy arena. The evaluation of REDD+ revealed that countries across Africa, Asia and Latin America are showing some progress, but some face backlashes in realizing the necessary transformational change to tackle deforestation and forest degradation. A Qualitative Comparative Analysis (QCA) undertaken as part of the research project showed two enabling institutional configurations facilitating progress: (1) the presence of already initiated policy change; and (2) scarcity of forest resources combined with an absence of any effective forestry framework and policies. When these were analysed alongside policy arena conditions, the paper finds that the presence of powerful transformational coalitions combined with strong ownership and leadership, and performance-based funding, can both work as a strong incentive for achieving REDD+ goals. Key policy insights The positive push of already existing policy change, or the negative stress of resource scarcity together with lack of effective policies, represents institutional conditions that can support REDD+ progress. Progress also requires the presence of powerful transformational coalitions and strong ownership and leadership. In the absence of these internal drivers, performance-based funding can work as a strong incentive. When comparing three assessments (2012, 2014, 2016) of REDD+ enabling conditions, some progress in establishing processes of change can be observed over time; however, the overall fluctuation in progress of most countries reveals the difficulty in changing the deforestation trajectory away from business as usual.