After studying this unit you should be able to:

• identify the economic issues faced by developing countries in mutilateral trade negotiations;

• describe these issues from a developing country perspective;

• explain how the economic power of nations impinges upon the ability of states to negotiate settlements that are beneficial to them.

Author(s): The Open University

The processes of analysis and synthesis in conventional thinking are based on the concept of an object. An object is something that can be clearly distinguished from its environment and can be characterised by its attributes. Attributes enable categorisation schemes that are the basis of our normal thinking. So when you look at a particular ecosystem, for example a pond, you find different animals and plants. And if you look at any â€˜book of the pondâ€™ you find each a
Author(s): The Open University

The final trick I want to show you with Arrhenius's law is how to extract the constants rï»¿0 and Eï»¿a from experimental data. If the Arrhenius equation (Section 4.3.1) is â€˜turned inside outâ€™ by taking natural logarithms of both sides it becomes:

Author(s): The Open University

Let's look graphically at the way the rate of a thermally activated process changes with temperature. Figure 16 shows two rates with different activation energies of 1.0 and 0.5 eV â€“ which curve is which?

Author(s): The Open University

Thermally activated processes are those that get going not because of average effects, but because the fraction of particles in the tail of the distribution increases with temperature. This is a basic property of the thermal distribution we have been discussing. For instance, what would take 30Â 000 years at room temperature may happen in under one second at 1000 K if it depends on how many particles have an energy in excess of 1 eV.

The next step in the study of energy distribu
Author(s): The Open University

The founder of TechnoratiÂ  claims that the number of â€˜blogsâ€™ doubles every five months and that the creation rate is approaching two per second. One estimate I read in July 2010 put the number at 400 million blogs. Because these online diaries offer instant publishing opportunities, you potentially have access to a wealth of knowledge from commentators and experts (if they blog) in a wide ra
Author(s): The Open University

The date when information was produced or published can be an important aspect of quality. This is not quite as simple as saying that 'good' information has to be up to date.

## Activity 9

Here is an example of a news item from an on
Author(s): The Open University

One of the characteristics of â€˜goodâ€™ information is that it should be balanced and present both sides of an argument or issue. This way the reader is left to weigh up the evidence and make a decision. In reality, we recognise that no information is truly objective.

This means that the onus is on you, the reader, to develop a critical awareness of the positions represented in what you read, and to take account of this when you interpret the information. In some cases, authors may be
Author(s): The Open University

The project, or single, team consists of a group of people who come together as a distinct organisational unit in order to work on a project or projects. The team is often led by a project manager, though self-managing and self-organising arrangements are also found. Quite often, a team that has been successful on one project will stay together to work on subsequent projects. This is particularly common where an organisation engages repeatedly in projects of a broadly similar nature â€“ for e
Author(s): The Open University

Our tendency to form groups is a pervasive aspect of organisational life. As well as formal groups, committees and teams, there are informal groups, cliques and cabals.

Formal groups are used to organise and distribute work, pool information, devise plans, coordinate activities, increase commitment, negotiate, resolve conflicts and conduct inquests. Group working allows the pooling of people's individual skills and knowledge, and helps compensate for individual deficiencies. It has been
Author(s): The Open University

After completing this unit you should be able to:

• describe the main features of work groups and teams;

• discuss the main group processes that affect work group or team effectiveness;

• describe the main features of projects, project teams and project management;

Author(s): The Open University

Polymers are long chain molecules with properties dominated by their chain behaviour and the nature of their chemical make-up or constitution. The distinction between thermoplastics and thermosets has become rather blurred with the development of new materials for more demanding environments than previously. They include high performance polymers which are more resistant to high temperatures, possess greater moduli or strengths, and can be combined with additives to enhance their intrinsic pr
Author(s): The Open University

Replacement of one polymeric material by another may be undertaken entirely for manufacturing reasons, and this is what happened in the redesign of the Topper dinghy for thermoplastic polymer. The dinghy was originally designed for hand lay-up GRP in 1969 by Ian Proctor, a well known designer of small boats and yachts (Figure 61
Author(s): The Open University

Polymeric materials offer substantial benefits over conventional materials in terms of their low density, relative freedom from corrosion, transparency or translucency, and a range of physical properties which cannot be achieved with metals, glasses or ceramics. Such unique properties include low coefficients of friction (e.g. PTFE), resistance to extreme environments (e.g. PTFE, silicones) as well as the ability to absorb and modulate damaging vibrations (e.g. most rubbery polymers). It is t
Author(s): The Open University

If there are key connections between the chain configuration and crystallisation, you might also expect some more subtle effects from rotation about chain bonds. After all, polymer chains must be able to twist into the regular conformation demanded for crystal structures (Figure 57(a)). And what influence will rotation have on
Author(s): The Open University

As polymers are processed and shaped by flowing into moulds the shear stress fields induce preferred orientations in the molecules. The hydrostatic components of the stress field cause packing. These orientation and packing effects will relax with time if the temperatures are high enough, but the moulding cycle is frequently such that they are â€˜frozen-inâ€™ by cooling or perhaps fixed into the structure because the material has been crosslinked. The consequent moulded-in or residual stresse
Author(s): The Open University

An immediate consequence of the viscoelasticity of polymers is that their deformations under stress are time dependent. If the imposed mechanical stress is held constant then the resultant strain will increase with time, i.e. the polymer creeps. If a constant deformation is imposed then the induced stress will relax with time (stress relaxation). Author(s): The Open University

For high added-value products like boats and cars, material costs form a relatively small proportion of total costs. For directly manufactured products, however, which are sold without much assembly or finishing, material costs do form a relatively large proportion of the total production cost. This applies particularly to polymeric containers for foods and drinks but not, for example, to containers for more sophisticated products like electronic or electrical goods. What is much more importa
Author(s): The Open University

Benzene rings can be fused in various ways to create component parts for some of the complex aromatic repeat units shown in Table 5. One of the most important is bisphenol A, made by fusing two phenol rings with acetone:

Author(s): The Open University

There is a relation between the ease of chain rotation (controlling conformation) and the locked-in configuration of polymer backbone chains. It is most easily appreciated by examining the effect of different backbone configurations on the glass-transition temperature or Tg. As already noted above, the Tg is the temperature when a rigid amorphous thermoplastic becomes elastomeric, and its stiffness drops steeply. How can this transition temperature be inter
Author(s): The Open University