Now showing items 21-40 of 83


      Banks, Brooke Ferrier (Indiana State University, 2019-08)
      The purpose of this study was to survey perceived job satisfaction and turnover intention of information technology professionals in the California State University (CSU) system. Employee satisfaction facets (work, pay, opportunities for promotion, supervision, and coworkers), overall satisfaction, and turnover intention were measured. Further, the study identified whether there was a significant difference in perceived job satisfaction or turnover intention based on years of service in the CSU system, gender, or campus in the CSU system. The study also examined the uniqueness of information technology professionals at campuses in the CSU system. This study utilized a mixed-methods methodology with two distinct phases. The quantitative phase of the study involved participants responding to an on-line survey. An invitation was sent to 622 information technology professionals at six campuses in the CSU system with a request to complete the survey. A total of 59 information technology employees responded, for a response rate of 9.49%. The quantitative results support earlier studies that report a negative correlation between overall job satisfaction and turnover intention. Of the five facets of job satisfaction, the mean satisfaction with opportunities for promotion was the lowest. The qualitative phase followed the quantitative phase and involved interviewing information technology managers from the CSU system, using a semi-structured interview protocol, to gain additional clarity about the data gathered in the quantitative phase. The managers did not perceive a difference between the job satisfaction of information technology professionals and other professionals. The majority of managers reported viewing turnover positively, but suggested that their view of turnover is highly situational depending on whether the turnover is of a high or low performer. The culture of information technology professional turnover intention was described as somewhat different for other professionals given the ease of skills transfer and demand for information technology professionals in the market.

      Venable, Bradley J. (Indiana State University, 2019-05)
      Negative process yield is an unexplained expense that does have a significant impact on profits. As like most other manufacturing processes, there are multiple processing operations that a finished good can be exposed to during the course of the entire process. Negative process yield can occur during these known operations but without accurate reporting and data collection, it becomes a moot point. In order to investigate this unexplainable phenomena properly, understanding of what could possibly cause this from occurring must be achieved. In the case of the North American fastener manufacturing plant, missing pieces that are not accounted for through the normal scrap reporting process are often referred to as “negative process yield”. Loss of material from the various processes has been identified as a problem for the North American fastener manufacturing plant. The set of tools that assist in the identification and steady elimination of waste also referred to as lean principles and techniques must be used during the study. This study will examine and analyze the data collected and associated with the loss of unexplained production pieces throughout the production process and what the financial implications or effects have on margins or profits. The Taguchi Design of Experiment (DOE) method is to be used for the experiment. Roy stated that the main focus of the application of DOE is to improve quality. The definition of quality varies widely depending on the applications, but it must be defined before any experimental technique can be produced with meaningful results. Taguchi offers a generalized definition for quality of performance. He regards performance as the major component of product or process quality. A reduced variation results in a reduction in scrap, less rejection of product, and fewer warranty returns, consequently reducing costs, and improving profits and improving customer satisfaction. The result of the study indicated that the form tool was the most significant factor and the levels or grades of material used for those tools could have an effect on the machining process. There was also an indication that the drilling operation needed to be focused on and that the grade of material used, either carbide or high speed steel, be seriously considered based on the application and desired speeds and feeds of the drill depending on the substrate material of the fastener.

      Bhandari, Pawan (Indiana State University, 2022-05)
      One of US hospitals' widely used critical performance or quality outcome measures is the 30-day emergency department (ED) visit after a surgical procedure. Such ED visits add millions of dollars each year as a cost burden to US healthcare. This study aimed to identify key predictors known before the patient's surgery, contributing to undesirable ED visits within 30 days of a bariatric surgical procedure. The study was conducted in three phases. The first phase of the study engaged a panel of experts to narrow down important preoperative factors for patients undergoing bariatric surgery in the form of a Delphi study. The second phase of the study included quantitative data analysis, which utilized the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program Participant Use Data File of the year 2019 to identify statistically significant preoperative factors that can contribute to the likelihood of patients returning to the emergency department within 30 days of bariatric surgery. There were N = 193,774 cases with complete information from 868 MBSAQIP-accredited bariatric surgery centers across the United States in the Data File among which 15,533 (8% of the total cases) visited an ED without needing admission as inpatients. The analysis also examined the feasibility of developing a predictive model with only statistically significant factors and checking if the model has an acceptable fit. The third phase of the study reengaged the same panel of experts from the first phase to validate the findings from the second phase and to document the subject matter experts' perception regarding the model developed and the overall findings. Out of 33 preoperative variables, only 9 variables were selected in the first phase of the study with the help of a panel of experts. Out of the 9 chosen variables, 8 variables, i.e., Pre-Op GERD requiring medication, Number of Hypertensive Medications, Pre-Op BMI closest to bariatric surgery, Highest Recorded Pre-Op BMI, Pre-Op vein thrombosis requiring therapy, Pre-Op diabetes mellitus, Pre-Op history of COPD, and Pre-Op Steroid/Immunosuppressant Use for Chronic Condition significantly contributed to the likelihood of patients coming back to ED within 30 days of bariatric surgery. The study's second phase also yielded a predictive model using only the statistically significant and weighted variables, and each predictor exhibited statistical significance. In the third phase, a panel of experts weighed in mostly with positive feedback deeming the study clinically and operationally valuable for the bariatric patient population. The practical implication of this study is that the MBSAQIP Centers can use the model to determine the probability of a patient's likelihood of returning to ED after a bariatric surgical procedure. Based on the set criteria, if the patient has a higher chance of returning to ED, the care team can take interventions during and in the first few days or weeks of the discharge to prevent potential postoperative ED visits within 30 days of bariatric surgery.

      Ash, Gregory J. (Indiana State University, 2021-05)
      The purpose of the study was to determine the perspective of the Business Operation team and IT team during project team communication and interaction towards an awareness of the critical business processes and systems needed to ensure project success. For companies to remain competitive, a catalyst for growth through software development projects is required. Impediments to successful software project outcomes include inefficient communication, onesided team communication, siloed team interaction, lack of business knowledge, lack of information sharing, and insufficient training resources. This study was a Convergent Parallel Mixed Methods Design with survey questions for the quantitative component and open-ended questions for the qualitative part. The mixed methods research study included an in-depth review of the Business Operation teams' and IT teams' perspectives concerning team communication and interaction. An Independent Samples T-test was conducted to understand the differences between the Business Operation team and the IT team regarding General Communication, Team Communication, Team Interaction, and Project Outcomes. The T-test results indicated a difference in the perspective between the groups with General Communication but no difference in the perspective of Team Communication, Team Interaction, and Project Outcomes. The themes emerging from the qualitative component indicated an opportunity for training to acquire the knowledge and skills required to understand the underlying business process to facilitate a software project discussion.

      Rangarajan, Anuradha (Indiana State University, 2020-07)
      Electronic Health Record (EHR) is a technology innovation which has the potential to offer valuable benefits to the healthcare industry such as improved quality of patient care and safety, optimization of healthcare workflow processes and availability of electronic data for clinical research. The implementation success of EHR is therefore significant to the healthcare industry in the United States and around the world. Prior studies in research literature have considered the impact of technology attributes, organizational learning attributes, and service attributes on information technology implementations in various other domains based on theories such as Theory of Reasoned Action (TRA), Theory of Planned Behavior (TRB) and Technology Acceptance Model (TAM), but none have considered their association with implementation success in a comprehensive manner within a single study pertaining to the healthcare domain as this study does. Hence, this study addresses an essential research gap. The approach used by this study in conducting the research based on a multi-factor research model (including the aforementioned attributes) is consistent with the general method used by academic researchers whereby the ability of a unique and selective list of factors to predict certain outcomes is leveraged. The data for this research study was collected using a questionnaire survey instrument based on the Likert scale. Structural Equation Modeling (SEM) was used for data analysis due to the presence of latent variables in the research model. The results of the statistical analyses support the hypotheses confirming positive associations between technology attributes (ease of use, result demonstrability, performance expectancy), organizational learning attributes (organizational learning capability, organizational absorptive capacity), service attributes (service-dominant orientation), and EHR implementation success. The results of this study are of importance to both academicians and practitioners.

      Huenerfauth, Angela (Indiana State University, 2019-05)
      There are a number of potential distractions for operators when viewing plant status-monitoring information in a petrochemical plant: background noises of other employees speaking, sounds of manufacturing equipment and processes and other ambient noises like HVAC and building operation noise. When the monitoring equipment for a chemical or petrochemical plant is not designed to take into account that operators can be distracted by this noise, there is a potential safety hazard for the people in that work environment. Alarms can be missed and fundamental information can be overlooked. SCADA is “a type of control system that collects and displays data and allows users to manipulate and control the system from a distant location (Koffskey, 2010).” SCADA is used in various industries such as energy, food and beverage, manufacturing, oil and gas, power, recycling, transportation, and water and waste water (Gould, 2017). In the petrochemical industry, the status of individual instruments is monitored by one or a few supervisors at a central command station with a SCADA screen. The focus of this research is to determine if there is a difference in user eye behavior (Time to First Fixation, Fixation Frequency per AOI, Gaze Duration Mean, and Gaze Percentage per AOI) between no (minimal) ambient noise and ambient noise for users when viewing alerts/warnings on a petrochemical manufacturing SCADA user interface? 100 participants (with a science, engineering, or manufacturing background) were asked to watch two sets of simulated SCADA prototypes (half with petrochemical manufacturing noise and half without) while wearing a set of eye-tracking glasses. The Wilconox Rank Sum Test determined that there was a statistically significant difference in the data sets (with three of the four dependent variables) demonstrating that sound is statistically significant in distracting operators watching a petrochemical SCADA user interface.

      Miller, L. Andy (Indiana State University, 2020-05)
      This study was conducted to understand the variables, processes, organizational structures, and governance structures that are important and/or that support higher education decision makers in their selection and prioritization of information technology (IT) projects into their universities’ portfolios. IT project portfolio management (PPM) is comprised of many different activities, and the selection and prioritization of projects are just two interconnected activities amongst many. Research has suggested that these PPM activities are both important and beneficial; but there is a dearth of research on the subject specifically within higher education IT environments, and some higher education organizations struggle in this area. This study follows recent recommendations from other researchers to perform practice-based research on IT PPM. Research streams and standards bodies have long espoused the ideals of strategic IT PPM, where organizational strategy is perceived as a driver that strongly guides the practical activities and operations of IT PPM. However, there is a growing recognition that there is room for practice-based research because those ideals of strategic IT PPM are often not aligned with actual IT PPM practices and outcomes, and because IT PPM in practice often results in a bottom-up means for affecting strategy. This study used a qualitative research design, and included a practice-based exploratory multiple-case study focused on project selection and prioritization activities as they occur within real world higher education IT settings at eight universities in the California State University system. Each university acted as an individual case within the multiple-case study. Interviews were conducted with 27 subjects across these eight universities, and a breadth of other evidence was collected including documentation, physical artifacts, and archival records. Converging lines of data were developed through triangulation and corroboration of all the evidence, and this formed the informational basis for each case. Results from each case were reported independently, and a cross case synthesis was conducted to aggregate findings across all eight cases. In addition to questions about the mechanics of project selection and prioritization, the interviews also included questions that were designed to compare and contrast perceptions of technical and non-technical stakeholders. Twelve themes emerged as issues of importance including objectivity, formality, flexibility, alignment with the strategic plan, the difficulty for small projects to compete with large/enterprise projects, senior leadership involvement, transparency in decision-making, transparency in PPM mechanics, the need for consultation and responsiveness, capacity planning, governing bodies’ makeup and their representation of campus stakeholders, and satisfaction with the IT organization (and with its project management office). Technical and non-technical subjects’ perceptions were aligned throughout most of the twelve themes, but there were indeed areas where opinions differed.

      Gillam, Andrew R. (Indiana State University, 2019-05)
      Recent research of information technology (IT) end-user cybersecurity-related risky behaviors has focused on items such as IT user decision-making, impulsiveness, and internet use as predictors of human cyber vulnerability. Theories which guide user human behavioral intent, such as protection motivation theory (PMT, introduced by Rogers, 1975) and technology threat avoidance theory (TTAT, introduced by Liang and Xue, 2009) have not been widely investigated as antecedents of risky cybersecurity behavior (RScB). This dissertation describes exploratory research that analyzed and evaluated PMT/TTAT factors as predictors of RScB by enterprise IT users. This work uniquely contributes to the literature by investigating associations between accepted behavioral motivation models and RScB. Findings are intended to provide human resource development (HRD) practitioners and researchers innovative techniques to identify factors which may compel enterprise IT users to avoid risky cybersecurity behaviors in the workplace. Findings, based on survey responses by 184 working professionals in the United States, were largely consistent with previous TTAT-focused works. New insights arose regarding the predictive impact of perceived cost as a predictor of RScB (p = .003) with small-to-medium effect sizes. Predictability was further leveraged using discriminant analysis to predict RScB category membership derived from k-means clustering. Significant outcomes were noted with practical utility. An overarching goal of this study was to more fully inform the HRD community of scholar-practitioners of the urgent need to design, deliver, implement, and evaluate initiatives that could be utilized to diminish inappropriate and costly cybersecurity behaviors in various workplace environments.

      Cold, Sherman J. (Indiana State University, 2015-04)
      Recent hacking events against Sony Entertainment, Target, Home Depot, and bank Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) fosters a growing perception that the Internet is an insecure environment. While Internet Privacy Concerns (IPCs) continue to grow out of a general concern for personal privacy, the availability of inexpensive Internet-capable mobile devices increases the Internet of Things (IoT), a network of everyday items embedded with the ability to connect and exchange data. Domain Name Services (DNS) has been integral part of the Internet for name resolution since the beginning. Domain Name Services has several documented vulnerabilities; for example, cache poisoning. The solution adopted by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) to strengthen DNS is DNS Security Extensions (DNSSEC). DNS Security Extensions uses support for cryptographically signed name resolution responses. The cryptography used by DNSSEC is the Public Key Infrastructure (PKI). Some researchers have suggested that the time stamp used in the public certificate of the name resolution response influences DNSSEC vulnerability to a Man-in-the-Middle (MiTM) attack. This quantitative study determined the efficacy of using the default relative Unix epoch time stamp versus an absolute time stamp provided by the Network Time Protocol (NTP). Both a two-proportion test and Fisher’s exact test were used on a large sample size to show that there is a statistically significant better performance in security behavior when using NTP absolute time instead of the traditional relative Unix epoch time with DNSSEC.

      Bell, Christopher (Indiana State University, 2015-05)
      This study sought to determine if and to what extent strategy integration was related to the financial indicators profit margin ratio and inventory turnover for publically traded manufacturing organizations in Oklahoma. Current strategy theory states that the more thoroughly an organization adopts a given strategy the greater the effect will be on these financial indicators. Hence the need to more fully understand the extent and rates at which strategy integration effects these indicators. This study looked at perceived strategy integration scores for publically traded Oklahoma manufacturing organizations taken from June to August 2014 and financial indicators from 2012 and 2013. The perceived strategy integration scores were obtained via survey while the financial indicators were calculated using Section 10-K filings from the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (US SEC or SEC). Reliable financial information is not publically available for many private organizations, so, they were excluded from the study. Summary analysis of the data indicated that strategies were not in use in equal proportions with Niche Differentiation being most popular by far. Market focus appeared to be an indicator of inventory turnover standard deviation with Broad focus and Combination strategy groups having lower standard deviation. While the product focus appeared to indicate profit margin ratio range with Low Cost strategies having lower profit margins. After performing additional analysis it was found that performance enhancing technologies and other complicating factors may have had a larger impact than previously believed. A correlation was unable to be established for most strategies. For the Niche Low Cost Strategy a relationship was found where profit margins decreased 1.634% for each 1 point increase in perceived strategy integration score. It was also found that the Broad Differentiation Strategy it was found that inventory turns increased 0.7006 turns for every 1 point increase in perceived strategy integration score. No other strategies were found to have correlation coefficients that were statistically different from the null hypothesis. However, anecdotal evidence was found in support of several other of Porter’s theories.

      Barge, William C. (Indiana State University, 2015-05)
      Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death in the United States. Advances in wireless technology have made possible the remote monitoring of a patient’s heart sensors as part of a body area network. Previous studies have suggested that stray wireless transmissions in the industrial, scientific, and medical (ISM) band cause interference resulting in packet loss in Bluetooth piconets. This study investigates the impact that wireless transmissions from residential microwave ovens have on the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) component of the body area network. Using a systematic data collection approach, two variables were manipulated. The distance between the microwave oven and the BLE piconet was varied from 0.5 meter to 5.0 meters at one-half meter increments. At each distance, the power level of the microwave oven was varied from the lowest power setting to the highest power setting. The two variables that were collected were the microwave interference generated by channel and the packet loss by channel. The results suggest more packet loss is due to the microwave oven’s power level than by the distance, the interference caused by the microwave oven affects all BLE channels equally, and the packet loss by channel is a good predictor of microwave oven interference. The significance of this study lies in providing beneficial information to the medical and digital communication industries concerning the causes and solutions to disruptions in the Bluetooth-enabled body area network devices in a very common situation. The results of this study may lend support for improvements and widespread use of body area network medical systems, which may have the benefit of better monitoring, more data, and reduced fatalities due to misdiagnosed heart conditions.

      Winston Sealy, Dominique (Indiana State University, 2014-12)
      Additive Manufacturing rapid reproductive systems are gaining popularity within the manufacturing industry. One of the many benefits of such systems has been the exploration of building practical sacrificial patterns for investment casted metals. Methods such as, Castform and Quickcast, has been developed for selective laser sintering and Stereolithography apparatus technologies respectively. Research has demonstrated significant cost savings when Additive manufacturing rapid reproductive systems are utilized for customized or small batch production of sacrificial patterns. The purpose of this study was to develop a methodology for evaluating quality characteristics of Fused Deposition Modeling. Since Fused Deposition Modeling have been demonstrated by a number of experimental studies as a viable alternative to wax sacrificial patterns, this study explored the effects of wall thickness and raster resolution on quality characteristics such as, diametric accuracy, cylindricity, and concentricity. The results of the study indicated raster resolution had no effect on the measured quality characteristics, however, the ANOVA and Kruskal-Wallis tests showed statistical significance (α=0.05) for wall thickness of cylindricity of a small diameter (0.5”) and concentricity of two cylindrical features of diameters 0.5” and 1”. Moreover, the main contributions of this study involved the development of an accurate and robust design of experiment methodology. In addition, implications and recommendations for practice were also discussed.

      Pickard, John (Indiana State University, 2014-12)
      On February 3rd, 2011, the Internet Addressing and Numbers Authority (IANA) allocated the last five /8 blocks of IPv4 addresses to each of the five Regional Internet Registries (RIRs). Since that event, four of the five RIRs have depleted their IPv4 allocations and began operating under final IPv4 address depletion policies. The exhaustion of the IPv4 address pools maintained by the registries means that IPv4 is now a legacy protocol and that all future Internet growth will be over IPv6. This exhaustion also means that organizations must take action to accommodate IPv6 adoption or risk compromising business agility and continuity – especially those organizations with public-facing content that rely on the Internet. Yet, anecdotal evidence and recent published studies indicate that few organizations have moved to adopt IPv6. The evidence suggests a low sense of urgency and lack of understanding among organizational leaders regarding the potential consequences that IPv4 exhaustion will have on their organization’s business model. An understanding pertaining to the IPv6 adoption readiness within organizations is needed so that programs can be established to raise the awareness of organizational decision makers to risks of not having an IPv6 strategy and to inspire them to take action. This study achieved this objective by investigating the IPv6 readiness of enterprise organizations located in eastern North Carolina through a survey sent to the senior IT decision makers of 463 end-user enterprise organizations. IPv6 readiness was measured across five facets of organizational IPv6 preparedness; training, high-level planning, assessment of the current environment, IPv6 policy, and IPv6 deployment. Statistical analyses identified the significant technology adoption factors associated with IPv6 readiness as measured on a six-stage Guttman scale, ranging from simply “aware” of IPv6, to general IPv6 deployment. Results revealed that the majority of organizations have made little to no preparation toward IPv6 adoption and do not see IPv6 adoption as an urgent issue. Further it was found that the factors most significantly associated with low levels of IPv6 readiness were lack of perceived advantages of IPv6 and lack of perceived pressures from industry partners and customers to adopt IPv6. Based on the findings of this study, a recommended approach to developing an effective IPv6 strategy, as well as, a framework for IPv6 adoption planning is presented for organizational leaders and IT decision makers to use as a guide toward a successful IPv6 transition.
    • Analytical Modeling and Feasibility Study for Adoption of Renewable Energy Sources in a Single Family Dwelling

      Linn, Jimmy B. (Indiana State University, 2014-12)
      In the last four or five decades, increased political and social pressure has been placed on commercial and residential consumers to reduce consumption of fossil fuels and invest in alternative methods of energy production for electricity, heating and cooling. Commercially, wind turbines and photovoltaic energy production equipment has sprung up all over the country. Other forms of energy production such as hydroelectric and geothermal energy production facilities have also been built. During this time however, very few residential ‘green energy’ investments have been made. Only in recent years have residential home owners begun to “wet their feet” on ‘green’ energy equipment. Cost has been the major factor. Of late though, costs have been coming down and efficiency has been going up making home owners begin to sense that alternative energy may now be entering the realm of economic feasibility. Unfortunately, home owners have had no reliable or credible tools to assess economic viability of such systems. The purpose of this research is to develop a tool to access the potential of alternative energy sources and test it statistically by surveying subjects in five different ‘green’ energy categories. Since atmospheric (air-to-air) heat pumps have been around for many years and represent a mature heating and cooling technology, upgrading older inefficient HVAC equipment to new high efficiency atmospheric heat pumps is the category used to baseline the experiment. Ground source heat pumps and direct solar heating systems were modeled and compared to the baseline. Wind energy and photovoltaic energy production systems were modeled, surveyed and compared to using only grid supplied electricity. Results show that in four of the five cases tested, the less mature ‘green’ energy equipment; photovoltaic solar, direct solar and ground source heat pump equipment are in general not economically viable without tax rebates to significantly lower the net investment. Setback rules and environmental and aesthetic ordinances against siting them in those counties severely restrict the population of wind energy devices so that an effective test of this category using the model could not be done. The model performed well with the baseline data. Performance of the model with ground source heat pumps was reasonable, but improvements in the model reflecting differing features of ground source heat pumps need to be made. Performance of the model with photovoltaic energy production equipment was also good. Extending the test population to all fifty states and extending the utility bill test range from one year to five years will provide much more useful data to test and improve the model. Although the model development and testing done in this work only represents a small contribution to the bridging of a large gap in consumer confidence in green energy products, it represents a big step into an area that very few have attempted to venture into.

      Folse, Debra Landry (Indiana State University, 2014-12)
      Small medical and dental practices must comply with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) of 1996, and Title XIII Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009. The case study, utilizing interviews, observations, and existing documentation of two medical and the two dental practices, not only analyzed the compliance solution choices made involving procedures and technologies, but also analyzed the emotion aspects of fear of non-compliance, perceived confidence in compliance, and the primary and secondary appraisals of the compelled compliance. Although compliance is not an easy process, small medical and dental practices can discover a number of possible options and identify the best fit solution for their practice in the effort to affect compliance.

      Blake, Petulia (Indiana State University, 2014-12)
      Sustainability is increasingly becoming an integral part of how organizations communicate their business operation to stakeholders. As it is common knowledge that organizations are more inclined to invest in programs that contribute to their bottom-line, this study presents an analysis of the relationship between corporate sustainability behaviors and their impact on financial performance. The sample size was 40 United States (U.S.) aerospace companies, selected from the “Top 100 Aerospace Companies” world-wide in a report produced by Candesic consulting firm in 2012. Of the 40 U.S. companies, 21 were found to provide some form of sustainability report. Quantitative and qualitative instruments were constructed to identify and measure the following sustainability behaviors: 1) Report versus Non-Reporting Status, 2) sustainability initiative integration (SII), 3) sustainability strategic integration (SSI), 4) trends in sustainability reporting, and 5) Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) versus Non-GRI status. Archival data such as sustainability reports and financial reports were used to compare the relationship between the five independent variables and the 5-year profit-margin ratio mean of the companies in the study. All financial information was obtained from Reuters, a financial and business news source. After retrieving and analyzing all the reports, it was found that there is no significant relationship between the sustainability behaviors identified and financial performance. Although, the sustainability reporting trends indicate a slight relationship between reporting start date and the 5-year average profit margin mean, this researcher understands that there may be other factors involved. Further, there appears to be some relationship among the independent variables Sustainability Initiative Integration (SII), Sustainability Strategic iv Integration (SSI) and GRI status. For instance, organizations that use the GRI metrics tend to provide a strong message indicating that sustainability is aligned with the business goals, which influence how they market and innovate products and services. The strength of this study is the qualitative components that will contribute to further understanding and development of corporate sustainability within a multidisciplinary context. The study created instruments primarily for the purpose of determining the impact corporate sustainability behavior has on financial performance while simultaneously providing new insight on new and changing organizational values and leadership communication. A corporate sustainability report is a comprehensive document that gives external and internal stakeholders’ information on how organizations are responding to social, economic, and environmental issues. This study illustrates how a sustainability report reflects an organization’s level of involvement in environmental, social, and economic issues which are relevant to any academic environment that seek to gain more understanding of how businesses pay attention to societal demands while striving to have competitive advantage in the global market.

      Arias, Scott (Indiana State University, 2014-12)
      Under the guidance of the United States Army Corps of Engineering Manual 385 (EM 385), the federal government has taken a stringent stance on construction safety. Using the mandated Occupational Safety and Health regulations and the 29 Code of Federal Regulation as a safety foundation, the EM 385 requires project-specific planning, continuous oversight and direct control of all safety activities. These mandates, required of every Department of Defense entity, focus on safety management not found within other federal agencies, in an attempt to reduce the number and severity of mishaps. This study looks for causation between the use of the EM 385 and the number and the severity of mishaps using three multiple regression analysis. The research population studied included construction contractors who performed work within various federal government agencies. The data was compiled using 2008 data that was merged using the federal construction spending data with mishap rates obtained from the OSHA Data Initiative (ODI). The explanatory variables considered in this research were EM 385 use, contractor size, project size, construction sector, pricing structure, solicitation procedure, OSHA region, disadvantaged business status and type of federal set-aside. The three dependent variables included the total case rate (TCR), the days away, restricted, and transferred (DART) rate, and the days away from work (DAFWII) rate. Analysis of this data revealed that there were no conclusive results showing a causal relationship between the EM 385 and a reduction in the number and severity of mishaps.

      Osipitan, Osileke Odusanya (Indiana State University, 2014-08)
      The improvement of infrastructure by a public agency is to ensure satisfaction of the general public using such infrastructure, based on available funds. In order to implement and sustain the public good, an efficient project delivery method or the assessment of existing project delivery methods used to develop such infrastructure is necessary. Project delivery method is a process that defines the relationship between parties involved in a specific project. Any of the methods could affect a project budget, schedule, quality and the involvement of the project owner. This study investigated the impact of project delivery methods used by different type/class of railroad organization, which include passenger and freight railroad organizations on completed public highway-rail intersection projects in New York State, within a period of 10 years. Two hundred and fifty six (256) projects with similar scope, which were performed at independent locations, were selected. The research questions were answered based on hypotheses, which were tested with non parametric test using SPSS Statistical package version 20. The Mann-Whitney U test was used to determine the statistical significant difference between the total cost of Highway-Rail Intersection projects when Design-Build and Design-Bid-Build methods were used by railroad companies. The Kruskall Wallis test was used to determine the statistically significant difference between the total cost of projects performed by Passenger, Class 1 (Large), Class 2 (Regional) and Class 3 (Short-Line railroads) railroad companies operating in New York State, and a post-hoc test depicts the significant differences between the railroad organizations that differ. Findings indicated that there were statistical significant differences in total costs for project delivery methods as well as types/class of railroad organizations. It was recommended that the New York State Department of Transportation should partner with the railroad organizations for share cost agreement, develop short or long term plans to either close railroad grade crossings or grade separate crossings along railroad corridors so that passenger and Class 1 railroad organizations can significantly contribute to HRI improvements. Furthermore, NYSDOT need to adequately monitor HRI projects performed by the railroad organizations.

      Raiola, Joseph A., III (Indiana State University, 2014-08)
      Many mainstream architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) professionals are using Building Information Modeling (BIM). Although more and more firms are using BIM and this trend is forecast to continue, it is unclear what skills and competencies a construction manager will need in five years related to BIM. This research aims to answer that question through the use of a Delphi panel comprised of AEC professionals. The panel consists of members with the following qualifications: a minimum of eight years industry or academic experience or a combination of the two, a minimum of three years BIM experience, and membership in a nationally recognized professional organization. The results of the three round Delphi study identified skills and competencies in the following areas related to construction management: cost estimating (78 skills and competencies), scheduling and control (85 skills and competencies), project administration (71 skills and competencies), contract documents (29 skills and competencies), and other skills that were not in other categories (20 skills and competencies). In addition, this study reached consensus on descriptors that individual firms (24 descriptors) and construction mangers (22 descriptors) will need to possess to maintain or increase BIM usage in five-years. Although the panel identified many “new” BIM related construction management skills and competencies, “traditional” skills and competencies are a top response in each respective category. Within these “traditional” skills was the reinforcement of soft skills. BIM is a collaborative project management system so many soft skills are more important than with traditional project management systems. BIM requires some efficient communication along with strong soft skills, an area reinforced by the findings of this research. Furthermore, this research concluded that as BIM diffuses into the construction community, social systems interested in increasing BIM usage should augment “traditional” skill sets with the “new” BIM related skills and competencies. Any academic programs seeking to implement BIM related topics into existing courses should do so in a careful manner. This research revealed in five-years BIM will continue to enter the mainstream. Building Information Modeling theory suggests that AEC industry will completely change because of BIM. However, this is not the entirely the case. This research discovered that soft skills are more important because of BIM diffusion. This research will be of particular interest to industry and academic programs seeking to increase BIM usage, or begin development of curriculum that incorporates BIM. The results include a consensus of the most important skills and competencies related to BIM for a construction manager to possess, as ranked by mean and standard deviation,

      Taylor, James (Indiana State University, 2014-08)
      Lean six sigma is a hybrid continuous improvement methodology that is not standardized and is not well understood. A review of literature found that the spectrum of lean six sigma approaches extends from those that are lean dominant to those that are six sigma dominant. This research illuminated the lean six sigma methodology by methodically assessing the literature via text mining and cluster analysis. Text mining was used to establish the degree to which lean six sigma models, as described in articles published in the International Journal of Lean Six Sigma, are lean dominant versus six sigma dominant. The iterative cluster analysis was used to identify clusters of articles that were interpretable. A cluster of lean dominant lean six sigma articles was identified and statistically validated as being distinct from other models. It was determined that characteristics of a lean dominant lean six sigma include the text mining key words “waste”, “value”, and “kaizen.” The research also found that these lean dominant lean six sigma articles ascertain lean as the dominant philosophy and six sigma as a subordinate tool used in achieving the lean objectives. The findings of the research as well extrapolation of the literature informed a recommended lean six sigma model. The recommended model is lean dominant and consists of two subordinate methods – six sigma and statistical process control. The three synergistic approaches not only each serve in their own way to manifest process improvements, they also all contribute to organizational learning which is considered a chief contributor to competitive advantage.