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See detailThe long and winding road: analysing Science and Innovation Centres, a unique policy instrument of Science Diplomacy
Epping, Elisabeth UL

Scientific Conference (2019, September 05)

The aim of this paper is to empirically contribute to the study of science diplomacy and thereby introduce and analyse science and innovation centres (SIC) as a novel policy instrument in the science ... [more ▼]

The aim of this paper is to empirically contribute to the study of science diplomacy and thereby introduce and analyse science and innovation centres (SIC) as a novel policy instrument in the science diplomacy toolbox. SIC are distinct units or satellite institutes, established by governments abroad, operating at the nexus of higher education, research, innovation and diplomacy. Based on a comparative analysis of policy documents and interview data, insights into the development of SIC in Germany and Switzerland are generated. Furthermore, the (changing) political rationales that guide their development, and hence science diplomacy in general, are distilled. By applying a policy instrumentation lens, the research 1) uncovers the development of the two SIC over time reflecting similarities and differences, 2) shows that the political rationales for SIC are changing and exceed dominant science diplomacy notions of soft power, 3) reveals that the promotion of the concept of science diplomacy reflects a certain Zeitgeist and rather than being a novelty, existing practices are relabelled as science diplomacy. [less ▲]

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See detailTranslanguaging at Primary School: A longitudinal study on the language practices of a newly-arrived 4th-grader
Degano, Sarah UL

Presentation (2019, September 03)

Migration flows of the 21st century have led to increasingly multilingual societies and schools. To engage with this ever-evolving multilingualism, students need to develop linguistic repertoires they can ... [more ▼]

Migration flows of the 21st century have led to increasingly multilingual societies and schools. To engage with this ever-evolving multilingualism, students need to develop linguistic repertoires they can use flexibly and strategically. However, not all the resources of their linguistic repertoires are equally valued as language policies tend to exclusively support standard majority language(s). This unequal support translates into low achievement levels among linguistic minority students (Lewis, Jones and Baker 2012) and the reification of social stratification. A growing body of scholars promote flexible multilingual pedagogies that capitalize on students’ linguistic resources with the aim of providing a more equitable access to the curriculum (García and Flores 2012, Weber 2014). Translanguaging, the deployment of a speaker’s full linguistic repertoire (Otheguy et al. 2015), is a pillar of these pedagogies. Although debated in recent years (Hamman 2017, Jaspers 2018), research in bi- and trilingual schools has shown that translanguaging can increase participation (Kirsch 2017), understanding (Baker and Wright 2017) and identity development (García 2009). Yet, research on translanguaging including migrant languages in multilingual schools remains scarce (Duarte 2018, Rosiers 2018). The present doctoral project investigates the translanguaging practices of students with different language and migration backgrounds in multilingual Luxembourg. As the country with the highest percentage of immigrants in Europe (Eurostat 2018), Luxembourg has a highly diverse linguistic landscape. This diversity is reflected in the education system, where more than 60% of the students indicate having a dominant language other than Luxembourgish (MENJE 2018), with Portuguese being the most used. Not only is the education system characterized by its linguistic diversity, it also is trilingual in French, Luxembourgish and German, the latter being the main medium of instruction in primary school. Accounting for 40.5% of all curricular time, language instruction leaves little room for other linguistic resources; migrant students’ home languages are largely ignored (Horner and Weber 2018) and teachers widely draw on translanguaging practices that are restricted to shifts into Luxembourgish, a Germanic language (Weber 2014). Luxembourg’s education system fails to provide access to the curriculum for migrant students with a Romance-language background. By contrast, recent studies (Kirsch 2017) have shown that in some Luxembourgish preschool, Year 1 and Year 2 classes, teachers have begun to encourage the deployment of the students’ entire linguistic repertoires. Little attention has, however, been paid to the later years of primary school where the achievement levels of students with a migration background are at their lowest (MENJE 2017). This study targets Year 4. It explores the flexible language use of 4thgraders in different school subjects and the development of their language practices across Years 4 and 5. The present paper is based on one of the three investigated schools and focusses on the classroom interactions of an 11-year-old newly arrived student with a Portuguese background. The following research questions underpin the paper: - In what ways and to what extent does a newcomer deploy his semiotic repertoire while interacting with his peers and this teacher? - In what ways and to what extent do his language practices differ across Year 4 and Year 5? The findings contribute to the understanding of multilingual students’ language practices and their development; provide insight into how linguistic repertoires of students with a Romance-language background can be capitalized on; and help denaturalize the ‘student with a migration background - stereotype’ by shedding light on the importance of translanguaging practices in short-cutting gatekeeping mechanisms that restrict access to educational opportunities for more than 20% of the school population (Horner and Weber 2018). [less ▲]

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See detailSignificant Economic Presence and Challenges for the PE Concept
Sinnig, Julia UL

Presentation (2019, September 03)

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See detail„Verachtet mir die Meister nicht!“ Kulturelle Botschafter in Luxemburg. Laurent Menager und Asca Rampini
Sagrillo, Damien UL

Scientific Conference (2019, September 03)

Der kubanische Anthropologe Ferdinand Ortiz prägte im Jahr 1940 den Begriff der „transculturación“, welcher – grob zusammengefasst – den Übergangsprozess von einer Kultur zur anderen beschreibt. In den ... [more ▼]

Der kubanische Anthropologe Ferdinand Ortiz prägte im Jahr 1940 den Begriff der „transculturación“, welcher – grob zusammengefasst – den Übergangsprozess von einer Kultur zur anderen beschreibt. In den Neunzigerjahren hat der deutsche Philosoph Wolfgang Welsch die Idee wieder aufgenommen, den Begriff jedoch in Transkulturalität umbenannt. Was sich bei Welsch als eine Bereicherung anhört – die (unter dem luxemburgischen Begriff so genannte) Mixität verschiedener Kulturen –, liest sich bei Ortiz teilweise als Aufgabe bzw. Verlust. In meinem Vortrag geht es um die zwei luxemburgische Komponisten Laurent Menager (1835-1902) und Asca Rampini (1931-1999). Auf den ersten Blick haben beide nicht viel gemeinsam, doch hinsichtlich des oben angesprochenen Diskurses zwischen Transkulturalität und Verlust wird ein Ineinandergreifen erkennbar, das beispielhaft für andere (Blasmusik-)Komponisten regionaler Reputation sein könnte: das In-die-Vergessenheit-fallen ihrer jeweiligen Lebensleistungen, die viel mit Integration und gegenseitigen kulturellen Beeinflussungen zu tun haben. Der Fingerzeig Wagners, die Meister nicht zu vergessen, mag teilweise Abhilfe schaffen. [less ▲]

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See detailINTERGENERATIONAL VALUE TRANSMISSION AND THE ROLE OF MOTIVATIONAL PROCESSES IN MIGRANT AND NON-MIGRANT FAMILIES
Albert, Isabelle UL; Barros, Stephanie; Coimbra, Susana

Scientific Conference (2019, September 01)

The intergenerational transmission of values from one generation to the next is essential for the continuity of a society as it facilitates communication between members of different generations and ... [more ▼]

The intergenerational transmission of values from one generation to the next is essential for the continuity of a society as it facilitates communication between members of different generations and within families, where shared values constitute a part of the family identity. In the context of acculturation, traditions can provide a secure base for migrants who have to adapt to a new living context. On the one hand, parents in migrant families might find it particularly important to transmit traditional values to the next generation, on the other hand offspring can be confronted with diverse value orientations in the receiving culture, and therefore special efforts might be needed to transmit traditional values. The current study is part of the larger FNR-funded IRMA project and presents a crosscultural comparison of n = 154 triads of parents and their (young) adult children from Luxembourgish native and Portuguese immigrant families in Luxembourg, as well as a subsample of Portuguese families living in Portugal. Participants from both generations filled out a standardized questionnaire assessing general value orientations, perceived value similarity as well as parental motivation to transmit respectively children’s motivation to take over parental values. Results showed that parental motivation to transmit values was particularly high in Portuguese families (in Portugal and Luxembourg), although no differences in perceived value similarity between the three subsamples occurred. Whereas parental motivation for transmission was related to the value of tradition in all three subsamples, perceived similarity between parents and their adult children was related to their selforiented values. Concerning consensus in value profiles, the role of motivational processes will be further explored, and effects of culture and migration will be discussed in an integrative framework of intergenerational relations in light of migration and ageing. [less ▲]

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See detailSymposium: INTERGENERATIONAL VALUE TRANSMISSION: THE ROLE OF MOTIVES, TRANSITIONS, AND CONTEXT
Albert, Isabelle UL

Scientific Conference (2019, September 01)

Cultural transmission refers to the transfer of knowledge, practices, values and norms through processes of socialization, enculturation and acculturation which can be intentional or implicit ... [more ▼]

Cultural transmission refers to the transfer of knowledge, practices, values and norms through processes of socialization, enculturation and acculturation which can be intentional or implicit. Intergenerational transmission occurs to a large extent within the family as primary socialization agent. Apart from that, values and norms are learnt in contact with peers and friends, in school or through media. Although the last years have seen an increased research interest in these topics, mechanisms are still unclear and open questions remain with regard to moderators of transmission. The present symposium brings together researchers from three different countries – Germany, Italy and Luxembourg – who will focus on factors that might have an impact on intergenerational value transmission at different points in the family life cycle and outside the family. First, Daniela Barni and colleagues examine the impact of relationship quality toward mothers and fathers on adolescents’ motives for internalization of moral values, thereby taking age of adolescents into account. Christian Hoellger and colleagues then focus on later points in the family life cycle. Taking into account specific life course transitions, they find differences in value transmission, which are however moderated by adult children’s gender. Third, Isabelle Albert and colleagues concentrate on intergenerational transmission of values in the context of acculturation, taking into account parental motivation to transmit values in a sample of Portuguese immigrant compared to non-immigrant families with adult children. Finally, Elke Murdock and Maria Stogianni analyze the roles of friendship patterns for the development of ethnic identity of adolescents who live in a culturally highly diverse setting, underlining the importance of experiences in individuals’ biographies in specific contexts that shape their further development. The discussion will focus on the importance of motives to transmit or take over values, context variables and transitions for intergenerational transmission of values within and outside the family. [less ▲]

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See detailLe rôle des acteurs locaux dans l’accueil des demandeurs d’asile et des réfugiés au Luxembourg
Oesch, Lucas UL; Lemaire, Léa UL; Vianelli, Lorenzo

Article for general public (2019)

La recherche sur l’accueil des réfugiés, en Europe et de par le monde, porte une attention croissante au rôle des acteurs dits locaux. Jusqu’à peu, l’accueil était considéré comme une question quasi ... [more ▼]

La recherche sur l’accueil des réfugiés, en Europe et de par le monde, porte une attention croissante au rôle des acteurs dits locaux. Jusqu’à peu, l’accueil était considéré comme une question quasi exclusivement nationale. Il est vrai que les Etats centraux gardent toute leur importance, notamment en ce qui concerne les processus de décision. Cependant, l’accueil se joue aussi à une échelle locale, en particulier pour la mise en oeuvre des politiques. Quel est donc le rôle des acteurs locaux dans l’accueil des demandeurs et bénéficiaires de protection internationale au Luxembourg ? [less ▲]

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See detailVisualization of AE's Training on Credit Card Transactions with Persistent Homology
Charlier, Jérémy Henri J. UL; Petit, François UL; Ormazabal, Gaston et al

in Proceedings of the International Workshop on Applications of Topological Data Analysis In conjunction with ECML PKDD 2019 (2019, September)

Auto-encoders are among the most popular neural network architecture for dimension reduction. They are composed of two parts: the encoder which maps the model distribution to a latent manifold and the ... [more ▼]

Auto-encoders are among the most popular neural network architecture for dimension reduction. They are composed of two parts: the encoder which maps the model distribution to a latent manifold and the decoder which maps the latent manifold to a reconstructed distribution. However, auto-encoders are known to provoke chaotically scattered data distribution in the latent manifold resulting in an incomplete reconstructed distribution. Current distance measures fail to detect this problem because they are not able to acknowledge the shape of the data manifolds, i.e. their topological features, and the scale at which the manifolds should be analyzed. We propose Persistent Homology for Wasserstein Auto-Encoders, called PHom-WAE, a new methodology to assess and measure the data distribution of a generative model. PHom-WAE minimizes the Wasserstein distance between the true distribution and the reconstructed distribution and uses persistent homology, the study of the topological features of a space at different spatial resolutions, to compare the nature of the latent manifold and the reconstructed distribution. Our experiments underline the potential of persistent homology for Wasserstein Auto-Encoders in comparison to Variational Auto-Encoders, another type of generative model. The experiments are conducted on a real-world data set particularly challenging for traditional distance measures and auto-encoders. PHom-WAE is the first methodology to propose a topological distance measure, the bottleneck distance, for Wasserstein Auto-Encoders used to compare decoded samples of high quality in the context of credit card transactions. [less ▲]

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See detailMQLV: Optimal Policy of Money Management in Retail Banking with Q-Learning
Charlier, Jérémy Henri J. UL; Ormazabal, Gaston; State, Radu UL et al

in Proceedings of the Fourth Workshop on MIning DAta for financial applicationS (MIDAS 2019) co-located with the 2019 European Conference on Machine Learning and Principles and Practice of Knowledge Discovery in Databases (ECML-PKDD 2019) (2019, September)

Reinforcement learning has become one of the best approach to train a computer game emulator capable of human level performance. In a reinforcement learning approach, an optimal value function is learned ... [more ▼]

Reinforcement learning has become one of the best approach to train a computer game emulator capable of human level performance. In a reinforcement learning approach, an optimal value function is learned across a set of actions, or decisions, that leads to a set of states giving different rewards, with the objective to maximize the overall reward. A policy assigns to each state-action pairs an expected return. We call an optimal policy a policy for which the value function is optimal. QLBS, Q-Learner in the Black-Scholes(-Merton) Worlds, applies the reinforcement learning concepts, and noticeably, the popular Q-learning algorithm, to the financial stochastic model of Black, Scholes and Merton. It is, however, specifically optimized for the geometric Brownian motion and the vanilla options. Its range of application is, therefore, limited to vanilla option pricing within the financial markets. We propose MQLV, Modified Q-Learner for the Vasicek model, a new reinforcement learning approach that determines the optimal policy of money management based on the aggregated financial transactions of the clients. It unlocks new frontiers to establish personalized credit card limits or bank loan applications, targeting the retail banking industry. MQLV extends the simulation to mean reverting stochastic diffusion processes and it uses a digital function, a Heaviside step function expressed in its discrete form, to estimate the probability of a future event such as a payment default. In our experiments, we first show the similarities between a set of historical financial transactions and Vasicek generated transactions and, then, we underline the potential of MQLV on generated Monte Carlo simulations. Finally, MQLV is the first Q-learning Vasicek-based methodology addressing transparent decision making processes in retail banking. [less ▲]

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See detailRuleML+RR 2019 Doctoral Consortium and Rule Challenge
Soylu, Ahmet; Moschoyiannis, Sotiris; Governatori, Guido et al

Book published by CEUR-WS.org (2019)

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See detailIntroduction: Integrating Digital Humanities
Birkholz, Julie; Zaagsma, Gerben UL

in DH Benelux Journal (2019), 1

Introduction to the inaugural issue of the DH Benelux Journal which explores the theme of Integrating Digital Humanities.

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See detailLaurent Menager – ein musikalischer Kulturbotschafter Luxemburgs
Sagrillo, Damien UL

in CD Laurent Menager (2019)

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See detailAn Approximate Solution for Symbol-Level Multiuser Precoding Using Support Recovery
Haqiqatnejad, Alireza UL; Kayhan, Farbod UL; Ottersten, Björn UL

in IEEE International Workshop on Signal Processing Advances in Wireless Communications (SPAWC), Cannes 2-5 July 2019 (2019, August 29)

In this paper, we propose a low-complexity method to approximately solve the SINR-constrained optimization problem of symbol-level precoding (SLP). First, assuming a generic modulation scheme, the ... [more ▼]

In this paper, we propose a low-complexity method to approximately solve the SINR-constrained optimization problem of symbol-level precoding (SLP). First, assuming a generic modulation scheme, the precoding optimization problem is recast as a standard non-negative least squares (NNLS). Then, we improve an existing closed-form SLP (CF-SLP) scheme using the conditions for nearly perfect recovery of the optimal solution support, followed by solving a reduced system of linear equations. We show through simulation results that in comparison with the CF-SLP method, the improved approximate solution of this paper, referred to as ICF-SLP, significantly enhances the performance with a negligible increase in complexity. We also provide comparisons with a fast-converging iterative NNLS algorithm, where it is shown that the ICF-SLP method is comparable in performance to the iterative algorithm with a limited maximum number of iterations. Analytic discussions on the complexities of different methods are provided, verifying the computational efficiency of the proposed method. Our results further indicate that the ICF-SLP scheme performs quite close to the optimal SLP, particularly in the large system regime. [less ▲]

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See detailPotential of the Deformation Area Difference (DAD)-Method for Condition Assessment of Bridge Structures
Waldmann, Danièle UL; Erdenebat, Dolgion UL

Scientific Conference (2019, August 27)

The construction industry ranks in the back rows in terms of digitalization. The numerous existing bridge structures require considerable effort for inspection and reliable assessment of their condition ... [more ▼]

The construction industry ranks in the back rows in terms of digitalization. The numerous existing bridge structures require considerable effort for inspection and reliable assessment of their condition. However, the state-of-the-art for inspecting these structures still relies on the visual inspection realized by bridge inspectors. The current paper summarizes several research projects in the field of condition assessment of bridge structures at the University of Luxembourg by analysing the structural response due to dynamic excitation and static loading tests. The latest development aims at using the most modern measurement techniques by combining them to a new method, the Deformation Area Difference (DAD)-Method in order to simplify and automatize at most the inspection process. The proposed DAD-Method is based on conventional static load deflection tests. It allows the localization of stiffness-reducing damage by using a very precise measurement of the deflection line and by combining this outcome to the deflection line generated by a simplified finite element model of the bridge. In order to investigate the condition of a bridge by the DAD-Method modern measurement techniques such as photogrammetry and laser scanning are used. In the framework of the conducted research, these techniques are also compared to traditional measurement systems such as total station and inductive displacement sensors as well as to digital levelling sensors. By theoretical examples and experimental tests, it can be shown that the DAD-Method is able to detect and localize damage when the damage level is dominant on the measurement noise. This paper investigates also the application of the method on a real bridge structure in Luxembourg. All of the above-mentioned measurement techniques were used, whereby the photogrammetry is applied using both, stable tripods and an autonomous flying drone. This allows examining the accuracy of the different measurement systems when applied on a real-size structure. [less ▲]

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See detailFrom Diagnosing Diseases to Predicting Diseases
Balling, Rudi UL; Goncalves, Jorge UL; Magni, Stefano UL et al

in Betz, Ulrich A.K. (Ed.) Curious2018 (2019)

Chronic diseases can be considered as perturbations of complex adaptive systems. Transitions from healthy states to chronic diseases are often characterized by sudden and unexpected onset of diseases ... [more ▼]

Chronic diseases can be considered as perturbations of complex adaptive systems. Transitions from healthy states to chronic diseases are often characterized by sudden and unexpected onset of diseases. These critical transitions or catastrophic shifts have been studied in theoretical and applied physics, ecology, social science, economics and recently also in biomedical applications. If we could understand the underlying mechanisms and the dynamics of critical transitions involved in the development of diseases, we would be better equipped to predict and eventually prevent them from arising. The current paper gives an overview of the potential application of the concept of critical transitions to biomedical applications. [less ▲]

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See detailMicromechanical model for sintering and damage in viscoelastic porous ice and snow. Part I: Model and calibration
Kabore, Brice Wendlassida UL; Peters, Bernhard UL

in International Journal of Solids and Structures (2019)

Ice and snow are usually classified as a viscoelastic or viscoplastic materials according to temperature, strain rate, pressure and time scale. Throughout experimental studies presented in the literature ... [more ▼]

Ice and snow are usually classified as a viscoelastic or viscoplastic materials according to temperature, strain rate, pressure and time scale. Throughout experimental studies presented in the literature, it has been observed that at very low temperatures or high strain rates, porous ice and snow exhibit brittle behavior, but experience high viscous and plastic flow at temperatures close to the melting point and low rates. At the macroscopic level, nonlinearity is not necessarily attributed to permanent changes in the material or yielding but mainly to micro cracks, intergranular sliding, porosity collapse and crack propagation. In this paper, this complex behavior is described with a full microstructure-based model. Classical rheological models and beam theory are used to describe aspects of creep and fracture of granular ice and snow. [less ▲]

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See detailMicromechanical model for sintering and damage in viscoelastic porous ice and snow. Part II: validation
Kabore, Brice Wendlassida UL; Peters, Bernhard UL

in International Journal of Solids and Structures (2019)

The last decades have witnessed sharp progress in both numerical simulation methods and computing power. Realistic simulation of complex structures such as snow remains challenging. The discrete particle ... [more ▼]

The last decades have witnessed sharp progress in both numerical simulation methods and computing power. Realistic simulation of complex structures such as snow remains challenging. The discrete particle approach now accessible due to advances in parallel processing has shown to be a good alternative for brittle and quasi-brittle materials. A novel numerical model has been described in part I of this study. Ice grains in snow are found near their melting points with an enhanced creep that constantly affects its microstructure. The behavior of snow combines characteristics of polycrystalline ice, which depends on stress rate, temperature, hydrostatic pressure and geometrical proprieties that affects its fracture properties. Snow can pass from porous continuous structure to a granular form or creep intensively when loaded. The herein proposed methodology includes time and pressure dependent bonding properties of ice and predicts large displacements, fracture, and granular flow in snow under the effect of mechanical stress. A micromechanical approach based on particle mechanics and beam theory is used to capture microstructure evolution under external loads. The calibration and validation are based on stress-strain data from some compression tests found in the literature. [less ▲]

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See detailQuasicircles and width of Jordan curves in CP1
bonsante, francesco; danciger, jeffrey; maloni, sara et al

E-print/Working paper (2019)

We study a notion of "width" for Jordan curves in CP1, paying special attention to the class of quasicircles. The width of a Jordan curve is defined in terms of the geometry of its convex hull in ... [more ▼]

We study a notion of "width" for Jordan curves in CP1, paying special attention to the class of quasicircles. The width of a Jordan curve is defined in terms of the geometry of its convex hull in hyperbolic three-space. A similar invariant in the setting of anti de Sitter geometry was used by Bonsante-Schlenker to characterize quasicircles amongst a larger class of Jordan curves in the boundary of anti de Sitter space. By contrast to the AdS setting, we show that there are Jordan curves of bounded width which fail to be quasicircles. However, we show that Jordan curves with small width are quasicircles. [less ▲]

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