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ChesterRep is the University of Chester's institutional repository and an online platform designed to collate, store, and aid discoverability of research carried out at the university to the wider research community

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  • Enclave-Reinforced Inequality during the COVID-19 Pandemic: Evidence from University Campus Lockdowns in Wuhan, China

    Sun, Cheng; orcid: 0000-0001-6505-821X; email: suncheng@hbue.edu.cn; Xiong, Yaxuan; email: xiongyaxuan@mail.hbue.edu.cn; Wu, Zhiqin; email: zhiqin.wu@manchester.ac.uk; Li, Jie; email: 18170049@mail.hbue.edu.cn (MDPI, 2021-11-26)
    The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted urban life and created spatial and social inequalities in cities. The impacts of lifting full lockdown restrictions once fast-spreading and community-acquired infection waves were under control are still not fully understood. This study aims to explore spatial inequality reinforced in the intervals between the waves of infection during the COVID-19 pandemic. Enclave-reinforced inequality resulting from enclave-based lockdown policies in Chinese cities was investigated through an analysis of the impacts of university campus enclave closures on the accessibility and crowdedness of urban green spaces. Using a modified two-step floating catchment area (2SFCA) and inversed 2SFCA (i2SFCA) method, accessibility and crowdedness were calculated and compared under two different scenarios. Additionally, the Lorenz curve, Gini coefficient, and Theil index were used to measure and compare intra-city global and local inequalities under each scenario. The results indicate that the lockdown of university campus enclaves decreased the supply of urban green spaces. Campus closures not only exacerbated the unequal distribution of urban green space, but also reduced the inequality of crowdedness in urban parks due to increased crowdedness in parks near the closed enclaves. Moreover, both accessibility and crowdedness worsened when the calculations were weighted for population size and the total supply of green space. Enclave-based lockdown in cities reinforced spatial inequality, and it is highly complex and has multidimensional impacts on urban inequalities and environmental injustice which should be considered by urban planners and decision-makers hoping to create healthy, inclusive, resilient, and sustainable cities in the “new normal” of the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Behavioural Indicators of Intra- and Inter-Specific Competition: Sheep Co-Grazing with Guanaco in the Patagonian Steppe

    Fernandez, Tomas; Lancaster, Alex; Moraga, Claudio A.; Radic-Schilling, Sergio; von Hardenberg, Achaz; Corti, Paulo; Universidad Austral de Chile; University of Chester; Fundacion CEQUA; Universidad de Magallanes (MDPI, 2021-11-22)
    In extensive livestock production, high densities may inhibit regulation processes, main- taining high levels of intraspecific competition over time. During competition, individuals typically modify their behaviours, particularly feeding and bite rates, which can therefore be used as indicators of competition. Over eight consecutive seasons, we investigated if variation in herd density, food availability, and the presence of a potential competitor, the guanaco (Lama guanicoe), was related with behavioural changes in domestic sheep in Chilean Patagonia. Focal sampling, instantaneous scan sampling, measures of bite and movement rates were used to quantify behavioural changes in domestic sheep. We found that food availability increased time spent feeding, while herd density was associated with an increase in vigilant behaviour and a decrease in bite rate, but only when food availability was low. Guanaco presence appeared to have no impact on sheep behaviour. Our results suggest that the observed behavioural changes in domestic sheep are more likely due to intraspecific competition rather than interspecific competition. Consideration of intraspecific competition where guanaco and sheep co-graze on pastures could allow management strategies to focus on herd density, according to rangeland carrying capacity.
  • ‘I’m Gonna Be the Best Friend You Could Ever Hope For—And the Worst Enemy You Could Ever Imagine’: Frank Miller’s All Star Batman & Robin, the Boy Wonder and the Problem of the Boy Sidekick in the Twenty-First-Century Superhero Narrative

    Andrew, Lucy; University of Chester (Palgrave Macmillan, 2021-07-25)
    Andrew examines the representation of the boy sidekick/adult detective relationship in Frank Miller’s All Star Batman & Robin, the Boy Wonder (2005–2008). The chapter explores the ways in which Miller’s graphic novel revises, rewrites and problematises the classic Batman/Robin relationship, with particular emphasis on power, violence and abuse. It explores the disturbing parallels that the text draws between the boy sidekick and the love interest, the troubling power imbalance between the adult superhero and his boy sidekick, and the dangers inherent in introducing an innocent and traumatised boy into the violent world of an adult crime fighter. The chapter concludes by identifying how tonal and structural shifts in the comic-book medium have contributed to the growing prevalence of problematised Robin figures in twenty-first-century Batman narratives.
  • Introduction: Step Forward, Sidekicks

    Andrew, Lucy; Saunders, Samuel; University of Chester (Palgrave Macmillan, 2021-07-25)
    Saunders and Andrew offer a definition of the sidekick in crime fiction and provide a brief account of the origins and development of this figure from the nineteenth century to the present day. They outline significant moments in the history of the sidekick, establish key trends in the construction of the sidekick, and identify and interrogate widely held views about the sidekick’s function and representation in crime fiction. They make a case for the wider significance of the sidekick beyond the role of help-mate or foil to the infallible detective and point towards the key contributions that the sidekick has made and continues to make to the canon of crime fiction. They also offer a brief introduction to each of the essays and key themes/ideas explored by contributors throughout the collection.
  • Marginal habitats provide unexpected survival benefits to the Alpine marmot

    Ferrari, Caterina; Zanet, Stefania; Rolando, Antonio; Bertolino, Sandro; Bassano, Bruno; von Hardenberg, Achaz; University of Turin; Gran Paradiso National Park; University of Chester
    Age-specific survival trajectories can vary significantly among wild populations. Identifying the environmental conditions associated with such variability is of primary importance to understand the dynamics of free-ranging populations. In this study, we investigated survival variations among alpine marmot (Marmota marmota) families living in areas with opposite environmental characteristics: the typical habitat of the species (alpine meadow) and a marginal area bordering the forest. We used data collected during an 11-year study in the Gran Paradiso National Park (Italy) and performed a Bayesian survival trajectory analysis on marked individuals. Furthermore, we investigated, at a territorial level, the relationships among demographic parameters and habitat variables by using a path analysis approach. Contrary to our expectations, for most of the marmot’s lifespan, survival rate was higher in the marginal site closer to the forest and with lower visibility than in the alpine meadow site. Path analysis indicated that the number of families living close to each other negatively affected the stability of the dominant couple, which in turn affected both juvenile survival and reproduction. Given the lower number of neighbouring families which inhabited the marginal site and the potentially different predation pressure by the most effective predator in the area (Aquila chrysaetos), our results suggest that species adapted to live in open habitats may benefit from living in a marginal habitat. This study highlights the importance of habitats bordering the forest in the conservation of alpine marmots.

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