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The domestication of the chile pepper, Capsicum annuum: Genetic, ecological, and anthropogenic patterns of genetic diversity.
Over the following four chapters, a multidimensional approach is utilized to contribute to the understanding of the domestication of C. annuum . A number of research tools (ecological, genetic, and sociological) are utilized to investigate the myriad of ways in which the genetic diversity of C. annu
Pyrolysis of Thermal Protection System Materials: Molar Yields of Volatile Products Derived from In Situ Mass Spectrometric Measurements
Mass spectrometric techniques have been developed to measure the molar yields of pyrolysis products from ablative resins and composite materials at heating rates that are relevant to flight conditions. Thermal decomposition mechanisms of phenolic and an epoxy-novolac resin systems are reviewed. New
Disorders of Iron Homeostasis affect over a billion people worldwide. These disorders can be grouped according to iron deficiency, the major cause of anemia, and iron overload, the major cause of death in patients with hemochromatosis. Anemia is managed with blood transfusions or iron supplementatio
Despite their popularity, more than half of mergers and acquisitions (M&A) are considered a failure, often times attributed to employee problems that were ignored or mishandled. Studies have shown that employees' loss of identity is one of these problems, especially for employees of the acquired
This dissertation seeks to understand the evolution of financial intermediation in the course of China's economic transition. The research is based on a unique data set collected by the author and other collaborators. I first show that China's two-decade long financial reform is a spontaneous proces
Analysis of the National Study of Postsecondary Faculty: Does a gender gap persist among science faculty?
The purpose of this study was to examine the veracity of the ongoing claim that a gender gap persists among postsecondary science faculty despite more than three decades of federal, state and private sector programs as well as affirmative action legislation, designed to identify and educate women an
In this dissertation, I explore three questions in law and economics.; First, I discuss the contracting out of government services. The privatization literature depicts contracting out as a tradeoff between excessive private cost saving and inadequate public quality improvement. I show that monitori
Causes and consequences of extinction and survival in fossil marine invertebrates with a special focus on the Crinoidea (Phylum Echinodermata).
In the geologic past, certain traits increased the chance of survival of some marine invertebrate taxa, which means that extinction did not occur randomly. However, it has been claimed that these traits buffer less against extinction at mass extinction events. Herein, a method for detecting selectiv
The relationship between trade and the environment and their impacts on productivity: Evidence from the U.S. and China.
Overcoming the trade-off between environmental protection and economic development has been a particularly important issue for countries around the world. This dissertation explores the relationship between trade and the environment first and tests the "pollution haven hypothesis" from the angles of
Relationships among fish populations, species assemblages, and environmental factors in a heterogeneous floodplain landscape
I studied the dynamics of the fish communities of the middle reach of the Brazos River and its floodplain oxbow lakes by quantifying temporal and spatial variation in abundance of juvenile and adult fishes. I collected fish and limnological samples quarterly from each oxbow and the main river channe
Incorporating Waste Prevention Activities into Life Cycle Assessments of Residential Solid Waste Management Systems.
The four papers of this dissertation explore themes related to waste prevention, the system boundaries, functional units and scale of life cycle assessments (LCAs) of municipal solid waste (MSW) management, as well as the transparency and consistency of the application of LCA methods.;The first pape
During the past decade, the very large scale integration (VLSI) community has migrated towards incorporating multiple cores on a single chip to sustain the historic performance improvement in computing systems. As the core count continuously increases, the performance of network-on-chip (NoC), which
The Sarbanes-Oxley Act (hereafter, SOA) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (hereafter SEC) certification order are expected to improve financial reporting quality. Prior studies have demonstrated that earnings management significantly influences financial reporting quality. This study examin
This dissertation studies nuclear crisis behavior. Specifically, it theorizes behavior between middle powers with nuclear weapons that are nested within a world with larger hegemonic states. The situation represents a paradigm shift from the bipolar context of the Cold War where all nuclear crises i
The maintenance of equipment has been an important issue for companies for many years. For systems with hidden or unrevealed failures (i.e., failures are not self-announcing), a common practice is to regularly inspect the system looking for such failures. Examples of these systems include protective
Changes in circulating hormones and neural signaling systems contribute to the development of maternal behaviors during the transition from a virgin to postpartum state. Several genes linked to mental health disorders with social deficits are modulated during the postpartum period, and these genes m
A comparative study of mathematics achievement through the use of technology in Enhancing Education Through Technology (EETT) grant and non-grant school districts in Kentucky .
The Enhancing Education Through Technology (EETT) Act makes funding available for elementary and secondary school districts with the primary goal of improving students' academic achievement through the use of technology. The main purpose of this comparative analysis study is to show the impact of EE
Aircraft manufacturers believe that it is possible to create supersonic business jets that would have quieter sonic booms than those that lead to the current ban on overland commercial supersonic flight over the US. In order to assess if the impact of these "low booms" is acceptable to the public, n
The development of high quality age models for paleoclimate records is critical for constraining leads, lags, and rates of change within the climate system, which helps to elucidate the mechanisms of past climate changes. For example, improvements to age models for paleoclimate records from marine s
With the fall of the Berlin Wall, the collapse of many Warsaw Pace Communist regimes (all in 1989) and the death of the Soviet Union (1991), the world changed dramatically. In the decade after the end of the Cold War (1989), Capability Theory predicted that highly capable nations would be less suppo