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[en] Process improvement is that part of process improvement, which drives beneficial change in process performance. Improvement in results can be accomplished in many ways. One way is by improving the ways by which the results are being measured. Results can often be improved by running the process with the planned resources and executing the tasks as planned. Failures are more often the result of people not running the process as planned - they take short cuts, make mistakes, and don't take action when necessary. From organizational perspective, Performance Indicators can offer powerful insights into the status of the Company activity and processes functioning. They enable consistent tracking of objectives and strategic alignment, definition of success and critical success factors, as well as visibility into launch plans, performance, and overall quality and timeliness. Successful performance measurement system adheres to the following main principles: Measure only what is important; Focus on customer needs; Involve employees in the design and implementation of the measurement system. Performance measurement is defined as a process of evaluation of company activities performance relative to a defined goal. The basic concept of performance measurement involves: Planning and meeting operating goals; Detecting deviations from planned levels of performance and restoring performance to the planned levels, or Achieving new levels of performance. Performance measurements are very important, because they can be used for: Control - Measurements help to reduce variation; Self-assessment - Measurements can be used to assess how well the process is doing, including improvements that have been made; Continuous improvement - Measurements can be used for identification of the process trends and to determine process efficiency and effectiveness, as well as opportunities for improvement; Management assessment - without measurements there is no way to be certain that the company meeting the objectives or that the company is being effective and efficient. The Performance measurement system is composed of three elements: Performance criteria - relative elements used for comparison at the performance evaluation; Performance indicators - specific values of the performance criteria over some specified time period, or 'numerical or quantitative indices that show how well each objective is being met'. Performance standards - accepted levels of performance for each criterion. The purpose of this report is to present an approach for measurement of business effectiveness of Consultancy Company, operating in energy sector. (author).
[en] This paper is devoted to assessing the presence of some regularities in the magnitudes of the earthquakes in Italy between January , 2016 and January , 2017, and to propose an earthquakes cost indicator. The considered data includes the catastrophic events in Amatrice and in the Marche region. To our purpose, we implement two typologies of rank-size analysis: the classical Zipf–Mandelbrot law and the so-called universal law proposed by Ausloos and Cerqueti (2016 PLoS One 11 e0166011). The proposed generic measure of the economic impact of earthquakes moves from the assumption of the existence of a cause-effect relation between earthquakes magnitudes and economic costs. At this aim, we hypothesize that such a relation can be formalized in a functional way to show how infrastructure resistance affects the cost. Results allow us to clarify the impact of an earthquake on the social context and might serve to strengthen the struggle against the dramatic outcomes of such natural phenomena. (paper: interdisciplinary statistical mechanics)
[en] The Swedish energy audit program is a publicly financed program, mainly targeting small and medium-sized firms to help them finance energy audits. By examining suggested and implemented energy efficiency measures from the energy audits conducted in 241 firms in the program, the aim of this paper is to examine the energy efficiency implementation gap and the cost efficiency of the program. The audits show that the firms' average annual energy efficiency improvement potential is between 860 and 1270 MWh/year which corresponds to a total energy efficiency improvement potential of between 6980 and 11,130 MWh/firm. The implementation rate of the suggested energy efficiency improvement measures in the SEAP is 53%. The program has resulted in investments in energy efficiency improvements between €74,100and €113,000/firm. - Highlights: • Auditors find an energy efficiency improvement potential of 460–660 MWh/year/firm. • The implementation rate of the suggested measures is 53%. • The total cost per MWh lie between €87 and €114/MWh. • Public costs in the SEAP are €0.7–€1.3/MWh
[en] Background and purpose: Prophylactic cranial irradiation (PCI) in limited stage small cell lung cancer (LS-SCLC) prevents brain metastases and improves survival, with the potential for neurocognitive toxicity. RTOG0933 demonstrated that hippocampal avoidance (HA) during whole brain radiotherapy preserves neurocognition. This study’s objective was to evaluate the cost-effectiveness of HA-PCI in LS-SCLC through decision analysis.
[en] This paper suggests that there was a negative bubble in oil prices in 2014/15, which decreased them beyond the level justified by economic fundamentals. This proposition is corroborated by two sets of bubble detection strategies: the first set consists of tests for financial bubbles, while the second set consists of the log-periodic power law (LPPL) model for negative financial bubbles. Despite the methodological differences between these detection methods, they provided the same outcome: the oil price experienced a statistically significant negative financial bubble in the last months of 2014 and at the beginning of 2015. These results also hold after several robustness checks which consider the effect of conditional heteroskedasticity, model set-ups with additional restrictions, longer data samples, tests with lower frequency data and with an alternative proxy variable to measure the fundamental value of oil. - Highlights: •There was a negative bubble in oil prices in 2014/15. •This bubble decreased oil prices beyond the level justified by economic fundamentals. •Several bubble detection methods confirm this evidence.
[en] We propose and analyze an antitumor model with combined immunotherapy and chemotherapy. Firstly, we explore the treatment effects of single immunotherapy and single chemotherapy, respectively. Results indicate that neither immunotherapy nor chemotherapy alone are adequate to cure a tumor. Hence, we apply optimal theory to investigate how the combination of immunotherapy and chemotherapy should be implemented, for a certain time period, in order to reduce the number of tumor cells, while minimizing the implementation cost of the treatment strategy. Secondly, we establish the existence of the optimality system and use Pontryagin’s Maximum Principle to characterize the optimal levels of the two treatment measures. Furthermore, we calculate the incremental cost-effectiveness ratios to analyze the cost-effectiveness of all possible combinations of the two treatment measures. Finally, numerical results show that the combination of immunotherapy and chemotherapy is the most cost-effective strategy for tumor treatment, and able to eliminate the entire tumor with size 4.470 × 10"8 in a year.
[en] Steam Generator inspection systems can be integrated using individual technologies from multiple sources or from a single developer. Faced with a significant reduction of the inspection window in 2008, Hydro Quebec required a doubling of its inspection equipment fleet. This paper describes the evaluation of new technologies that led to the decision by Hydro Quebec to set aside their traditional multiple source inspection system in favour of a fully integrated single source inspection system. The paper also describes the qualification and first deployment results as well as performance improvement metrics. (author)
[en] Recently, Si technology has been searching for ways to develop Si-driven future electronics by overcoming the limitations in its electrical and optical properties through more Moore (MM), morethan-Moore (MtM), and beyond complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) approaches. Among the suggested strategies, III-V-on-Si heterogeneous integration can be a solution that allows the merger of III-V-based devices and Si CMOS logic blocks on Si monolithically and costeffectively. GaN has wide applicability owing to its high electron mobility and large energy bandgap for high-speed low-power transistors and visible light sources. In this work, the room-temperature photoluminescence (PL) characteristics and the crystallinity of GaN-on-Si were empirically studied. GaN was deposited by using RF sputtering on p-type Si substrates. The results show that the peak location near 520 nm does not vary with the wavelength of the excitation laser, which is strongly supported by the fact that the signals are not from higher-order harmonics but are genuinely from the prepared GaN. Further, a sharp peak is observed in the X-ray diffraction (XRD) analysis cooperatively performed with PL experiments. Consequently, partially-crystallized GaN has been obtained on Si by using conventional CMOS processing with a low thermal budget and high cost-effectiveness.