Undergraduate Honors Theses


What drives technology transfer? A study of Clean Development Mechanism projects in China
With climate change becoming a global problem more people are paying attention to, a common goal to reduce Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions is recognized by most countries. However, usually emission reduction is more difficult to achieve in developing countries because of the lack of advanced emission reduction technology. Thus,one of the important ways to improve emission reduction technology in developing countries is through technology transfer, which is to import more advanced emission reduction technology from developed countries to developing countries. In this study, I explore the level and determinants of technology transfer using data of projects from four sectors under the CDM(Clean Development Mechanism) in China. I find that large scale projects with higher emission reduction amount tend to have higher probability of technology transfer. Also, more economically and technologically advanced provinces tend to have more projects with technology transfer.
You Are Who You Eat With
This study investigates the barriers to adopting vegetarian and vegan diets. Why do people who try to adopt these diets fail to maintain them? Why do people who identify as vegetarian or vegan allow exceptions in their diets? This study used a series of intensive interviews and a survey to answer these research questions. Interviews and survey responses revealed the following barriers to maintaining vegetarianism/veganism: social barriers, a lack of vegetarian/vegan options, a loss of a “black-and-white” perspective on diet, nutritional barriers, personal cravings, time barriers, and a tendency to subscribe to gendered meanings of meat eating. Social barriers were the most salient challenges for study participants. Participants indicated that they commonly encountered several types of social barriers while attempting to maintain vegetarian/vegan diets. This study concluded that cultural norms must change in order for people to find vegetarian/vegan diets more viable. Most significantly, this study found that having a supportive social network of people who adhere to a similar diet is extremely important for people as they try to maintain vegetarianism/veganism.
Young and Drunk
Contemporary public perceptions of nationalism see the concept as a toxic ideology of isolationist politicians. In contrast, through an analysis of work produced by public servants whose identities are tied more closely with those of artists than politicians, this thesis shifts focus to nationalist sentiments built around inclusivity. Using poems of Ilia Chavchavadze and Thomas Davis, this text serves as a comparative overview of nation-building strategies within Georgia and Ireland. The importance of land, myths, heroic characters, motherly figures, and calls to self-sacrifice are present in poems of both nations, uniting them in the struggle against colonial oppression and offering a common formula for creating a national identity.
"A Different Perspective"
This qualitative study aims to understand how Mormon religious practice and individual family upbringing shape faithful Mormon women’s goals for marriage and motherhood. The sacred canopy (Berger, 1967), which provides the theoretical context for this study, asserts that those who practice religion seek to act according to a religious worldview. This study examines the roles of personal faith, Church teachings, peer culture, and family upbringing in these women’s lives to determine how the sacred canopy is maintained. The analysis reveals how religious perspective has a slightly different role in the women’s lives than family upbringing, yet both work together to maintain the sacred canopy. This research is important for better understanding a demographic of a growing religious subpopulation and contextualizing their experiences.
"A Government of Laws and Not of Men"
The Massachusetts Constitution is the oldest active constitution in the world — it has been in effect for 228 years. While the state has amended the original document many times since its passage, its essential provisions, which have remained largely unaltered, are undoubtedly the work of a single man — John Adams. John Adams, routinely neglected among scholars, is essential to the development of American political thought. The purpose of this study is to put a magnifying glass on two important aspects of John Adams's life and give them the detailed study that they deserve: his legal career and its impact on the Massachusetts Constitution. The link between his legal career and his political theory is crucial to understanding that document. To write about John Adams's political thought without understanding the two-decade long legal career that drove so much of it leaves one with only a shallow understanding of how that thought developed. It was through the study of numerous legal authors along with his reflection and experiences as an attorney that Adams came to understand how vital the law was for a nation. Indeed, for Adams, law was the basis for good government itself, "to the end that it may be a government of laws and not of men."
"A Monster and a Test Case" Media framing in the Hissène Habré war crimes case
In September 2005 the former dictator of Chad, Hissène Habré, was charged with war crimes, crimes against humanity, and torture. Following an extradition request, Habré was arrested in Senegal – the country he had been living in since 1990, when he was deposed in a coup. The Senegalese government, however, did not follow through on the extradition order. The charges and order had not come from a Chadian court but rather from a Belgian judge. Faced with the delicate issue of extraditing a former African head of state to stand trial in the court of a former colonial power, the Senegalese government turned to the African Union, asking the organization to recommend how to try Habré.During the period between Habré’s arrest in November 2005 and the African Union’s ruling in July 2006, the Habré case appeared in the news framed in several different contexts. For human rights groups, the trial was not only the chance to bring Habré to justice; it was also a chance to further develop the legal precedent established in the Pinochet case. For the Senegalese government, the Belgian extradition order was a threat to African sovereignty.The Habré case as it appears in the media and as it is framed by the involved parties reveals the complexities of the case, demonstrating that the Habré case is not simply about trying a former head of state; rather it is about the politics of war crimes, from the scope and limitations of international law to the emerging role of the African Union on the world stage.
"A Rite of September
Labor in the United States has been commonly associated with images of industrialism, factories, and skilled craftsmen. This narrow vision of labor ignores the millions of Americans employed by the federal, state, and local governments. As early national labor law failed to define the rights of government employees, each state was forced to create their own public labor law through judicial rulings and state legislation. This study is framed around the struggles of Rhode Island public employees, specifically public school teachers, to obtain the right to organize and employ labor's greatest weapon, the strike. An in-depth examination of the 1975 Woonsocket Teachers' Guild strike incorporating the experiences of union officers, labor lawyers, and other participants provides a concrete example of the difficulties encountered by government employees against the courts, legislature, and public opinion.
"Accidental Intellectuals"
As cult, quality, and mainstream television have merged, a new breed of show has evolved; such shows raise complicated themes and incorporate deep meanings. Drawing from Abercrombie and Longhurst’s (1998) audience continuum, this study focuses on the more casual portion of fandom previously overlooked in fan studies. These “everyday fans” differ from their cultist and enthusiast counterparts by limiting television to a hobby, not engaging in creative production, and not seeking out fan networks. The interviews with sixteen everyday fans as well as four cultists/enthusiasts ground Lost fandom in previous fan traditions and also explore the experience of a previously overlooked segment of the audience. Using ABC's LOST, this study shows how mainstream, everyday fans often unconsciously think about practical and profound issues of everyday philosophy simply by following characters and storylines. In effect, viewers of the show become "accidental intellectuals." LOST raises issues of love, redemption, science versus faith and good versus evil. The interviews with everyday fans reflect that viewers were not only using critical thinking in puzzling out the show’s mysteries but also engaging in deep analysis, personal identification, and the pondering of profound moral dilemmas through the medium of the characters, often without realizing it.


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