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Conference Programme FULL (1)

An Analysis of Value

An Analysis of Value Creation in Smart Tourism Destinations Lino Trinchini The integration of smart technology into the urban/rural physical and their adoption by tourism organisations, visitors and local residents is changing the ways places are managed/marketed (Gretzel et al, 2015). Built on the Smart City concept, smart tourism destinations exemplify the evolution of tourism destinations towards a complex socio-technological ecosystem, where value co-creation, smart technology (e.g. Internet of Things) and people are essential components (Boes et al, 2016). Yet, little literature and critical analysis exists on knowledge and value creation in terms of social practices and interactions across stakeholders within smart tourism destinations, particularly from organisational and managerial perspective. Therefore, this research project aims to establish a critical framework in which to examine the value created within a smart tourism destination context, with specific reference to selected case studies and inter-organisational knowledge practices and processes. In particular, it will critically review current value creation theories and concepts through the lens of knowledge practices embedded in data and information sharing activities. In doing so, it will also argue that knowledge is a socially-based process embedded in management practices rather than a “static” content and tangible resource. The research project will be framed by a social constructivist view and will adopt a qualitative case study methodology. All things considered, this oral presentation will show the contribution to current theoretical debate concerning value creation in smart tourism destinations and to managers and tourism organisations practices within a smart tourism destination context, which will ultimately benefit tourists and local residents experiences. The Role of Peer Support in Facilitating Mental Health Recovery within a Physical Activity Intervention: The Perspectives of Volunteers Lorna Tweed, Florence-Emilie Kinnafick, Nathan Smith Mind the mental health charity work on a number of projects both on a national and local scale. In conjunction with my PhD, I am a researcher on their Get Set to Go programme which aims to encourage involvement of mental health service users into mainstream physical activity. With regards to the programme evaluation, I am interested in the impact of physical activity participation on mental health recovery, with a particular focus on the role of peer support through those acting as ‘buddies’ (peer navigators) and those delivering the Get Set to Go programme (sports coordinators) to mental health service users. The research aim is to create a wider understanding of the role of peer support within mental health recovery. More specifically, focus groups were conducted with sports coordinators and peer navigators (volunteers) representing 8 local Minds geographically to investigate the impact of peer support/lived experience to facilitate mental health recovery within a physical activity intervention. Findings will be discussed in terms of the personal development of the volunteers, the relationship between the volunteers and mental health services users and the positive impact the volunteers’ engagement has on participants’ mental health recovery. This research creates awareness of both the need and importance of volunteers delivering peer support within physical activity sessions. The difference made to the lives of both mental health service users and the volunteers themselves is invaluable and through increased understanding of the specific needs of the mental health population, we can actively change lives for the better.

The Analysis of Neuroinflammatory Processes and Inferior Colliculi Size as an Indicator of Prebycusis in the Inferior Colliculus Samuel Webb, Llwyd Orton As we age, the capability of the ear to transform sounds into neural signals that we perceive decreases. Most people will acquire age-related hearing loss, also known as presbycusis, at some point in their life. Following hearing loss, changes in the brain increase the chance of developing dementia, but the origin of these changes are unclear. Guinea pigs have similar auditory pathways to humans, as they express a wide repertoire of vocalisations and auditory cued behaviours, making them suitable for investigating brain changes in presbycusis. The guinea pigs in this study were aged 6, 12, 21 or 40 months. The oldest group exhibited reduced pinna reflexes, a characteristic of presbycusis. The Inferior Colliculi (IC), an integral centre of auditory processing in the brain, were hypothesised to shrink with age from the effects deafferentation. Brains were sectioned at 60µm in the coronal plane. Every 6 th section was stained for Nissl substance or GFAP, a marker of astrocytes (a cell type involved in defending the brain against inflammation) and imaged at 100x magnification on a Zeiss axioimager microscope. Measures were estimated using subjective classifications in Zeiss Zen 2 software. Surprisingly, ICs in the oldest group increased in size. Neurone size was unchanged, while Nissl staining and numbers of GFAP-positive astrocytes reduced. These data suggest neuroinflammatory processes are associated with presbycusis in IC, potentially involving degenerative changes in astrocytic neuroprotectivity, leading to oedema. Future research will investigate potential markers of neuroinflammation and pathogenic signalling pathways, potentially serving as novel biomarkers and therapeutic targets.

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