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  • Disputas: 2023-12-04 13:15 Geijersalen, 12A 138, Karlstad
    Edlom, Jessica
    Karlstads universitet, Fakulteten för humaniora och samhällsvetenskap (from 2013), Institutionen för geografi, medier och kommunikation (from 2013).
    Show me love: Emergent strategic communication practices and fan engagement within the popular music industry2023Doktoravhandling, med artikler (Annet vitenskapelig)
    Abstract [en]

    This thesis studies how the music industry’s strategic communication practices interplay with and steer audience and fan engagement. Relationships with, and expectations on, “active”, “prosuming” or “co-creative” music audiences make it imperative for communication practitioners to produce engagement. The music industry has adapted its promotional strategies accordingly, and data-driven processes and algorithms have become ever more central to understanding and controlling audience practices. Currently, we are witnessing the emergence of new strategic communication approaches to follow, foster, steer, track and commodify audience engagement, via big data. Applying qualitative and ethnographic approaches and socio-cultural perspectives, the thesis explores how strategic communication practices are enacted and designed to cater for, interplay with and steer fan engagement. Drawing on practice and structuration theory, critical questions are asked about the social consequences of communication engagement and an engagement imperative – for both individuals and organisations involved in the strategic communication around a music brand.  Results indicate that the contemporary, digitalised music industry demands communication practices that are at the same time strategic, professionalised, agile and co-creative. The study highlights important implications of such practices, in terms of changing professional competences and ethics as well as context-specific articulations of the power relations that support and are (re-)produced through the engagement imperative. In sum, the thesis is aimed at extending our understanding of how strategic communication practices respond to, and change in, a seemingly liquid, yet at the same time carefully orchestrated, communicative context. 

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  • Disputas: 2023-12-08 10:00 21A342, Eva Erikssonsalen, Karlstad
    Marker, Jeffery
    Karlstads universitet, Fakulteten för hälsa, natur- och teknikvetenskap (from 2013), Institutionen för miljö- och livsvetenskaper (from 2013).
    Forests, Functions, and Food Webs: Riparian processes through an ecological and molecular lens2023Doktoravhandling, med artikler (Annet vitenskapelig)
    Abstract [en]

    Riparian systems are critical ecological interfaces that have a significant impact on the surrounding aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems. The riparian and surrounding systems have significant roles in regulating energy flow, providing essential nutrients, and supporting unique species, making them important for ecosystem function. Both the aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems are reliant on the reciprocal exchange of energy subsides to maintain productive and stable food webs. Retention of forested buffers along streams during tree felling operations is a common management technique used to protect aquatic resources and conserve the surrounding ecosystem processes. Measuring the effects of forestry practices on the function and food webs of riparian predators is vital to making forest management decisions that strengthen and protect these fundamental services. Insight into predator function and predator-prey interactions using powerful molecular techniques can further the understanding of these complex systems and help to mitigate the effects of forestry practices.

    This thesis explores the functional diversity, food webs, and predator-prey interactions in riparian systems impacted by forestry felling practices. I have studied the effects of clear-cutting and forested buffer zones on riparian functional diversity through the assessment of functional richness and redundancy of spider and plant communities. In addition, I have both validated and used stable isotope analysis and DNA metabarcoding to investigate the primary food sources and prey choices of riparian predators. Riparian buffer size had no direct effect on the functional richness or redundancy of riparian spiders and vascular plants. However, riparian buffer variables such as canopy closure, buffer density, and vegetation coverage did have direct impacts on both spider and plant function. Most riparian spiders and brown trout received a significant majority of their food source from the terrestrial environment and the presence or absence of a riparian buffer did not effect this outcome. However, web-weaving spiders in unbuffered systems were more likely to exploit aquatic resources as a primary food source. Overall, the responses of predator function and food webs to forestry practice are site-specific.

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  • Disputas: 2023-12-08 13:00 1B364 (Frödingsalen), Karlstad
    Svensson, Katherine
    Karlstads universitet, Fakulteten för hälsa, natur- och teknikvetenskap (from 2013), Institutionen för hälsovetenskaper (from 2013).
    Early life environmental exposures and children's growth: A longitudinal study evaluating prenatal exposure for endocrine disrupting chemicals and nutrition in relation to children's growth up to seven years of age2023Doktoravhandling, med artikler (Annet vitenskapelig)
    Abstract [en]

    Endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) have the potential to disrupt the endocrine system in humans and animals with importance for health and development. Additionally, optimal nutrition during pregnancy is critical for fetal growth and pregnancy outcomes. However, further knowledge on the importance of EDC mixtures and nutrition, on birthweight and growth during childhood is needed. 

    The overall aim of this thesis was to evaluate the associations between prenatal exposure to EDC mixtures and nutrition respectively, with birthweight, growth and body composition in early- and mid-childhood, and to determine if these associations differed by sex. Data from mother-child pairs in the Swedish Environmental Longitudinal, Mother and child, Asthma and allergy (SELMA) study was analyzed, including 26 EDCs in prenatal urine and serum samples, children’s anthropometric and body composition measures up to seven years of age, and sociodemographic data from questionnaires and registers.

    Results suggest that higher prenatal exposure to EDC mixtures were associated with lower birthweight, and slower weight gain in early childhood, including a later peak growth velocity among girls. At 5.5 and 7 years of age, EDC mixtures were associated with lower BMI, less odds of overweight and less body fat among girls, but more body fat among boys at 7 years of age. Chemicals of concern in the mixtures were e.g., phthalates, bisphenols, perfluorinated alkyl substances (PFASs) and pesticides. Finally, maternal nutrition during pregnancy, i.e., better adherence to nutritional guidelines, was associated with more body fat for boys but less body fat for girls.

    In conclusion, prenatal exposure to both EDC mixtures and nutrition suggests to have an influence on birthweight, and children´s growth. Several of the found associations also differed by sex. 

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