Matching Items (9)

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Money or Mercy? What Really Drives US/Middle Eastern Relationships?

Description

"The rights of every man are diminished when the rights of one man are threatened".
- John F Kennedy

For over a century now, the United States has publicly professed a

"The rights of every man are diminished when the rights of one man are threatened".
- John F Kennedy

For over a century now, the United States has publicly professed a commitment to upholding human rights around the world, yet to this day economically supports numerous dictatorships and undemocratic regimes that flout human rights on a daily basis. The rhetoric of American politicians would imply that human rights and democracy are a priority in America's foreign policy, yet given US support for autocracies, both of these principles seem forgotten. If not respect for democracy and human rights, what is truly influencing America's relationship with these countries? I hypothesize that a country's resource availability will be the best predictive factor for its economic relationship with the US, followed by its military involvement with the US, and finally, human rights records will be the least predictive factor. The study found that a country's military cooperation with the US is the best predictive factor regarding our economic relationship, resource availability comes with a weak correlation, and human rights abuses very rarely substantively impact our economic relationships.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2020-05

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A Comparative Analysis of Arizona State University's American English and Culture Program and English Language Education in Five Other Countries

Description

The American English and Culture Program (AECP) at Arizona State University is an intensive language program that has taught English to speakers of other languages from over 115 countries. This

The American English and Culture Program (AECP) at Arizona State University is an intensive language program that has taught English to speakers of other languages from over 115 countries. This study focuses on English education from five of those countries by examining the similarities and differences between AECP and English education in those countries, as well as analyzing the concerns about English education in these countries and how they may impact students who come to AECP. Those countries are Saudi Arabia, China, Japan, Korea, and Kuwait. The primary characteristics that are analyzed are history of English in relation to that country, the goals of English learning, the teaching methods used in the classes, and textbook content. The implications of this study are to help EFL educators learn about their students' backgrounds in the English language through learning the students' countries' various histories and difficulties concerning English, thus allowing them to help students better transition into the English programs such as AECP. This study also shows what research is readily available about English education in other countries, and reveals that there is a lack of research in some aspects of English education for some countries.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014-05

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Improving the Saudi Arabia Procurement System: Perception and Development of the Construction Industry

Description

ABSTRACT

The current Saudi Arabian (SA) procurement system leads to many losses in money and benefits in projects. Also, the use of the traditional procurement system in SA has been identified

ABSTRACT

The current Saudi Arabian (SA) procurement system leads to many losses in money and benefits in projects. Also, the use of the traditional procurement system in SA has been identified as one of the causes for poor performance in the delivery of construction and the major risk to the SA government. A questionnaire has been developed and carefully designed based on literature review. The purpose of the survey was to identify the validity of the recent claims that the procurement system in SA is broken and to improve the current SA procurement system. The questionnaire was sent out to 1,396 participants including included 867 engineers, 256 consultants, 93 contractors, 35 owners and 132 architects and 13 academics.

All participants have been registered and licensed professionals at the SA Council for professional engineers, who work in both private and public sectors. The participants are interested in the SA procurement and contracts system with experience ranging from one to more than twenty-five years with the majority of twenty-five years of experience in common construction sectors such as; residential and commercial buildings, healthcare buildings, industrial building and heavy civil construction.

Most of the participants from both private and public sectors agreed with the survey questions subject matter regarding: zone price proposals, contractors' evaluation, risks, planning, projects' scope, owners concern and weekly risks reports (WRR). The survey results showed that the procurement system is the major risk to projects, affects construction projects negatively and is in need of improvement.

Based on the survey and literature review, a model, called Saudi government performance procurement model (SGPPM), has been developed in which the most expert contractor is chosen through four phases: submittals& education, vendors selection, illustration and execution. The resulting model is easy to implement by SA government and does not require special skills or backgrounds.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

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Measuring the construction performance in Saudi Arabia and proposing new procurement model based on BV PIPS (a university case study)

Description

Saudi Arabia has been facing issues with completing construction projects on time and on budget. It has been documented that 70% of public construction projects are delayed. Studies have identified

Saudi Arabia has been facing issues with completing construction projects on time and on budget. It has been documented that 70% of public construction projects are delayed. Studies have identified the low-bid delivery method as an important factor in causing such delays. The procurement system (low-bid) ignores contractors’ performance, and that is reflected in projects’ performance. A case study was performed, at a University campus in northern Saudi Arabia, identifying the major causes of project delays and cost overruns. The University was experiencing delays from 50% to 150%. Also, the actual project costs for four projects were examined and found that all four projects’ costs were higher than the original bid. The delay and cost overruns factors were gathered from the University engineers. A literature research identified one construction management method, best value performance information procurement system (BV PIPS), has documented multiple times its ability to improve project performance. In a comparison using the result of a case study and the results of (BV PIPS), Saudi Arabia’s delivery system was identified as a potential cause of project performance issues. The current procurement system was analyzed and modified to adapt with the (BV PIPS). The proposed procurement system using BV PIPS, which can be implemented in Saudi Arabia, was created with owner side. A large survey was conducted of 761 classified contractors and 43 universities’ representatives who rated causes of delay factors and cost overruns. The delay factors were then compared to delay factors experienced on Saudi construction projects, identified by performing a literature research. The comparison identified 14 important causes of delays. Moreover, the survey showed that classified contractors and universities’ representatives unsatisfied with low-bid, and they agreed with BV PIPS which selecting vendors based on performance with price. The proposed model required a submitted level of experience (LE), risk assessment (RA), and value added (VA). Besides, project managers of vendors should be interviewed during the clarification phase. In addition, venders should submit the project’s scope, technical schedule, milestone schedule, and risk management plan. In the execution phase, vendors should submit a weekly risk report (WRR) and director’s report (DR).

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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Developing and Evaluation the Implementation of Construction Management Research in the Saudi Construction Industry

Description

Public construction projects in Saudi Arabia have been experiencing performance issues for the past 30 years. There have been many research efforts and publications identifying the problem and potential causes,

Public construction projects in Saudi Arabia have been experiencing performance issues for the past 30 years. There have been many research efforts and publications identifying the problem and potential causes, however, there have been minimal efforts identifying how to mitigate the problem and testing to validate proposed solutions. A literature search has shown that the academic research has had minimal impact in assisting the construction industry to improve its performance. This dissertation aimed to evaluate the impact of construction management research in Saudi construction industry (SCI), and to investigate barriers that hinder the diffusion of implementing the research outcomes in the construction sector in order to develop a research roadmap to bridge the gap between academic research and practice, using the experience of other organizations that have a successful experience in developing the impact of construction management research in the construction industry. In order to achieve the aim of the study, five main objectives were set up which are: evaluate the impact of construction management research in SCI, identify the barriers that affect the implementation of construction management research in SCI, develop a research roadmap to bridge the gap between the research and practice, validating the proposed solution, and proposed implementation plan and review the result from the implementation. A literature research was performed, using 5 academic databases, identifying the impact that R&D has had on the SCI. A questionnaire was also created surveying both researchers and industry professionals. The results show evidence that the current R&D process in Saudi Arabia is not helping the SCI to increase their performance, and needs to be improved. This study provides a potential solution, and an action plan that mirrors one of the most successful research and development programs in the construction industry in the world [+1915 tests, six different countries, 31 states in the U.S. and 98% customer satisfaction]. The solution proposed in this dissertation is unique to the strengths and weaknesses of the research and development programs at universities and research centers in Saudi Arabia. This study is the first study of its kind in Saudi Arabia.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

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A Critical Discourse Analysis of Twitter Posts on The Perspectives of Women Driving in Saudi Arabia

Description

The issue of women driving remains to be highly debated in Saudi Arabia. Recent developments on its legalization have sparked conversation and discourse, particularly in social media sites like Twitter.

The issue of women driving remains to be highly debated in Saudi Arabia. Recent developments on its legalization have sparked conversation and discourse, particularly in social media sites like Twitter. Several hashtags have been used to indicate either support or criticism towards the movement.

Examining Twitter tweets and hashtags, the study explored how the discourse on women driving had been executed, particularly in between genders. The study analyzed a sizeable number of tweets as well as their context via linguistic corpora analysis. Following Norman Fairclough’s framework, the two opposing perspectives were investigated both at a level of textual analysis. The selected tweets were representative of the three hashtags that emerged on the heat of the discourse regarding the issue of women driving in Saudi Arabia: #Women_car_driving, #I_will_drive_my_car_June15, and #I_will_enter_my_kitchen_June15.

The results showed, among others, that tweets with the hashtag #Women_car_driving presented a tremendous support towards the movement. On the other hand strong opposing reactions emerged from the hashtags #I_will_drive_my_car_June15 and #I_will_enter_my_kitchen_June15.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2017

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Development of optimization models for regional wastewater and storm water systems with application in the Jizan region, Saudi Arabia

Description

Imagine you live in a place without any storm water or wastewater systems!

Wastewater and storm water systems are two of the most crucial systems for urban infrastructure. Water resources

Imagine you live in a place without any storm water or wastewater systems!

Wastewater and storm water systems are two of the most crucial systems for urban infrastructure. Water resources have become more limited and expensive in arid and semi-arid regions. According to the fourth World Water Development Report, over 80% of global wastewater is released into the environment without adequate treatment. Wastewater collection and treatment systems in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (KSA) covers about 49% of urban areas; about 25% of treated wastewater is used for landscape and crop irrigation (Ministry of Environment Water and Agriculture [MEWA], 2017). According to Guizani (2016), during each event of flooding, there are fatalities. In 2009, the most deadly flood occurred in Jeddah, KSA within more than 160 lives lost. As a consequence, KSA has set a goal to provide 100% sewage collection and treatment services to every city with a population above 5000 by 2025, where all treated wastewater will be used.

This research explores several optimization models of planning and designing collection systems, such as regional wastewater and stormwater systems, in order to understand and overcome major performance-related disadvantages and high capital costs. The first model (M-1) was developed for planning regional wastewater system, considering minimum costs of location, type, and size sewer network and wastewater treatment plants (WWTPs). The second model (M-2) was developed for designing a regional wastewater system, considering minimum hydraulic design costs, such as pump stations, commercial diameters, excavation costs, and WWTPs. Both models were applied to the Jizan region, KSA.

The third model (M-3) was developed to solve layout and pipe design for storm water systems simultaneously. This model was applied to four different case scenarios, using two approaches for commercial diameters. The fourth model (M-4) was developed to solve the optimum pipe design of a storm sewer system for given layouts. However, M-4 was applied to a storm sewer network published in the literature.

M-1, M-2, and M-3 were developed in the general algebraic modeling system (GAMS) program, which was formulated as a mixed integer nonlinear programming (MINLP) solver, while M-4 was formulated as a nonlinear programming (NLP) procedure.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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Assessment and Development of Contractors’ Mitigation Practices Towards Risks out of Contractors’ Control in the Saudi Construction Industry

Description

Recent studies have identified that contractors in the Saudi construction industry are not the main party that cause risks as owners and other parties have the major share of causing

Recent studies have identified that contractors in the Saudi construction industry are not the main party that cause risks as owners and other parties have the major share of causing risks. However, with the identification that risks out of contractors’ control are a leading cause of low performance, there is a lack of efficient risk mitigation practices in Saudi to manage these risks. The main aim of this dissertation is to assess the current practices applied by contractors to minimize risk out of their control and develop a risk mitigation model to manage these risks. The main objectives of the study are: investigating the risks that are out of contractors’ control, assessing the contractors’ current risk mitigation and performance measurement practices, and finally developing and validating a risk mitigation model to minimize risks out of contractors’ control and measure performance of involved project parties. To achieve the study aim, a mixed methodological approach was adopted. Theoretical approaches were utilized to review previous research and to develop a conceptual risk mitigation framework followed by a practical approach that is considered with collecting data from contractors. The quantitative method was mainly used to meet the study objectives through distributing a survey in the form of a questionnaire. As a consolidation of the study findings, the top ranked risks that are out of contractors’ control were identified. Furthermore, the results identified that the contractors’ current risk management and performance measurement practices are not effective in minimizing projects risks caused by other parties and ineffective in measuring performance of all parties. The developed model focuses on increasing accountability of project parties through mitigating project parties’ activities and risks with measuring the deviations and identifying sources of deviations. Transparency is utilized in the model through sharing weekly updates of the activities and risks combined with updated information of performance measurements of all project parties. The study results showed that project risks can be minimized and projects’ performance can be increased if contractors shift their focus using the developed model from only managing their own activities and risks to managing all project parties’ activities and risks.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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Owners perspective of factors contributing to project delay: case studies of road and bridge projects in Saudi Arabia

Description

Delays are a major cause for concern in the construction industry both globally and locally in Saudi Arabia. This paper identifies the main causes of delay in infrastructure projects in

Delays are a major cause for concern in the construction industry both globally and locally in Saudi Arabia. This paper identifies the main causes of delay in infrastructure projects in the holy city of Makkah (Saudi Arabia) and compares these with projects around the rest of the country and other Gulf countries as well. Data were obtained from 49 infrastructure projects that were undertaken by the owner and were analyzed quantitatively to understand the severity and causes of delay. 10 risk factors were identified in this study and these factors were grouped into four categories. The average delay in infrastructure projects in the city of Makkah was found to be 39%. The most severe cause of delay was found to be the land acquisition factor. This highlights the critical land ownership and acquisition issues that is prevailing in Makkah. In addition to this, other factors include contractors’ lack of expertise, haphazard underground utilities (line services), and re-designing. It is concluded that majority of delays were caused from the owner’s side as compared to contractors, consultants, and other project’s stakeholders. This finding was in line with the research findings of the Gulf Countries Construction (GCC) Industry’s literature as well. This study will fill an important practice and research gap for improving the efficiency in project delivery for infrastructure projects in the holy city of Makkah and the Gulf countries at large.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015