SciCombinator

Discover the most talked about and latest scientific content & concepts.

Concept: Supply and demand

254

Over the past decade, several countries across all regions, income groups and procurement methods have been unable to secure sufficient BCG vaccine supply. While the frequency of stock-outs has remained rather stable, duration increased in 2014-2015 due to manufacturing issues and attracted the attention of national, regional and global immunization stakeholders. This prompted an in-depth analysis of supply and demand dynamics aiming to characterize supply risks. This analysis is unique as it provides a global picture, where previous analyses have focused on a portion of the market procuring through UN entities. Through literature review, supplier interviews, appraisal of shortages, stock-outs and historical procurement data, and through demand forecasting, this analysis shows an important increase in global capacity in 2017: supply is sufficient to meet forecasted BCG vaccine demand and possibly buffer market shocks. Nevertheless, risks remain mainly due to supply concentration and limited investment in production process improvements, as well as inflexibility in demand. Identification of these market risks will allow implementation of risk-mitigating interventions in three areas: (1) enhancing information sharing between major global health actors, countries and suppliers, (2) identifying interests and incentives to expand product registration and investment in the BCG manufacturing process, and (3) working with countries for tighter vaccine management.

Concepts: Supply and demand, Consumer theory, Microeconomics, Market, Market economy, Economic surplus, Inverse demand function, Islamic economics in the world

170

A large and growing body of scientific evidence demonstrates that sugar drinks are harmful to health. Intake of sugar-sweetened beverages (SSB) is a risk factor for obesity and type 2 diabetes. Mexico has one of the largest per capita consumption of soft drinks worldwide and high rates of obesity and diabetes. Fiscal approaches such as taxation have been recommended as a public health policy to reduce SSB consumption. We estimated an almost ideal demand system with linear approximation for beverages and high-energy food by simultaneous equations and derived the own and cross price elasticities for soft drinks and for all SSB (soft drinks, fruit juices, fruit drinks, flavored water and energy drinks). Models were stratified by income quintile and marginality index at the municipality level. Price elasticity for soft drinks was -1.06 and -1.16 for SSB, i.e., a 10% price increase was associated with a decrease in quantity consumed of soft drinks by 10.6% and 11.6% for SSB. A price increase in soft drinks is associated with larger quantity consumed of water, milk, snacks and sugar and a decrease in the consumption of other SSB, candies and traditional snacks. The same was found for SSB except that an increase in price of SSB was associated with a decrease in snacks. Higher elasticities were found among households living in rural areas (for soft drinks), in more marginalized areas and with lower income. Implementation of a tax to soft drinks or to SSB could decrease consumption particularly among the poor. Substitutions and complementarities with other food and beverages should be evaluated to assess the potential impact on total calories consumed.

Concepts: Nutrition, Insulin, Supply and demand, Price elasticity of demand, Elasticity, Soft drink, Price elasticity of supply, Arc elasticity

145

This paper aims to examine the dynamics of land transactions, machine investments, and the demand for machine services using farm panel data from China. Recently, China’s agriculture has experienced a large expansion of machine rentals and machine services provided by specialized agents, which has contributed to mechanization of agricultural production. On the other hand, the empirical results show that an increase in non-agricultural wage rates leads to expansion of self-cultivated land size. A rise in the proportion of non-agricultural income or the migration rate also increases the size of self-cultivated land. Interestingly, however, relatively educated farm households decrease the size of self-cultivated land, which suggests that relatively less educated farmers tend to specialize in farming. The demand for machine services has also increased if agricultural wage and migration rate increased over time, especially among relatively large farms. The results on crop income also support complementarities between rented-in land and machine services (demanded), which implies that scale economies are arising in Chinese agriculture with mechanization and active land rental markets.

Concepts: Agriculture, Economics, Sustainability, Supply and demand, Agricultural economics, Farm, Tractor, Agriculture in China

53

Online traces of human activity offer novel opportunities to study the dynamics of complex knowledge exchange networks, in particular how emergent patterns of collective attention determine what new information is generated and consumed. Can we measure the relationship between demand and supply for new information about a topic? We propose a normalization method to compare attention bursts statistics across topics with heterogeneous distribution of attention. Through analysis of a massive dataset on traffic to Wikipedia, we find that the production of new knowledge is associated to significant shifts of collective attention, which we take as proxy for its demand. This is consistent with a scenario in which allocation of attention toward a topic stimulates the demand for information about it, and in turn the supply of further novel information. However, attention spikes only for a limited time span, during which new content has higher chances of receiving traffic, compared to content created later or earlier on. Our attempt to quantify demand and supply of information, and our finding about their temporal ordering, may lead to the development of the fundamental laws of the attention economy, and to a better understanding of social exchange of knowledge information networks.

Concepts: Attention economy, Data, Information, Knowledge, Supply and demand, Measure, Knowledge management, Exchange

49

The singular focus of public debate on the “top 1 percent” of households overlooks the component of earnings inequality that is arguably most consequential for the “other 99 percent” of citizens: the dramatic growth in the wage premium associated with higher education and cognitive ability. This Review documents the central role of both the supply and demand for skills in shaping inequality, discusses why skill demands have persistently risen in industrialized countries, and considers the economic value of inequality alongside its potential social costs. I conclude by highlighting the constructive role for public policy in fostering skills formation and preserving economic mobility.

Concepts: Psychology, Sociology, Educational psychology, Learning, Social sciences, Higher education, Behaviorism, Supply and demand

45

Describe the character and composition of the 2015 U.S. adult rheumatology workforce; evaluate workforce trends; and project supply and demand for clinical rheumatology care 2015-2030.

Concepts: Supply and demand, Photography

28

This article examines the market entry of biosimilar low-molecular-weight heparins (LMWHs) in Europe by focusing on regulatory requirements, pricing, reimbursement, prescribing, and dispensing. The window for biosimilar LMWHs to enter the market is narrow on the supply side because of several factors. These include (1) regulatory requirements, including a quality dossier, clinical and nonclinical studies, pharmacodynamic and pharmacokinetic studies, immunogenicity studies, and a comparability exercise (but a reduction in clinical data requirements might be plausible in some cases); (2) prices of originator LMWHs are lower than those of other biologic products; (3) European prices of originator LMWHs are lower than those observed in the rest of the world; (4) research and development and manufacturing costs are substantial; (5) costs of active pharmaceutical ingredients have increased following the heparin contamination crisis; and (6) biosimilar LMWHs may be subjected to generic medicine pricing regulations. Furthermore, there are limited opportunities for biosimilar LMWHs on the demand side. This is because, although LMWHs have a large market volume in Europe, demand-side incentives for biosimilar LMWHs are largely absent, and the questions about interchangeability and substitution between originator and biosimilar LMWHs have yet to be fully resolved.

Concepts: Pharmacology, Law, Clinical research, Drug development, Low molecular weight heparin, Supply and demand, Active ingredient, Food and Drug Administration

28

Although the number of patients needing organ transplantation systematically increases, recent years have seen a considerable shortage of donors. The level of knowledge and attitudes toward donation are critical factors in achieving the required balance between supply and demand. This pilot study assessed the knowledge, opinions, and behaviors related to organ donation and transplantation among 625 students representing eight different fields of study from the University of Rzeszow in south-eastern Poland. Although the participants provided evidence of knowledge about human organ donation and transplantation, they were aware of the main organs of the human body for potential transplants, and generally showed positive attitudes; only 24% of the subjects indicated their willingness to register as a donor; only 3% stated that they had already registered and had a donor card. The findings suggest that good intentions do not translate into action and that Poland needs to develop a nation-wide, up-to-date, and youth-oriented health education program that builds on favorable attitudes toward organ donation and transplantation.

Concepts: Heart, Organ, Organ transplant, Human body, Organ donation, Human anatomy, Supply and demand, Organs

27

The rapid uptake of biotech crops around the world demonstrates not only strong producer and consumer demand for the technology and its products, but also that where regulatory regimes function effectively and markets are allowed to operate as normal, co-existence between genetically modified (GM) and non-GM supply chains is readily achievable. However, the polarized debate over GMOs within the European Union over the past 15 years has resulted in a highly politicised and progressively impractical approach to the issue of GM crop co-existence, which in itself has become a further barrier to the technology’s development. This article argues that co-existence should not be treated as a pro- or anti-GM issue, and that the aim of co-existence measures should be to permit consumer choice and freedom to operate whatever the production method involved. It suggests that supply chain-based solutions to co-existence, rather than Government prescription, offer the most pragmatic and flexible response to the commercial realities of servicing differentiated market demands.

Concepts: Agriculture, European Union, Europe, Supply and demand, Genetically modified organism, Genetically modified food, Genetic engineering, Citizenship of the European Union

27

The UK National Health Service has a long history of recruiting overseas nurses to meet nursing shortages in the UK. However, recruitment patterns regularly fluctuate in response to political and economic changes. Typically, the UK government gives little consideration of how these unstable recruitment practices affect overseas nurses. In this article, we present findings from two independent research studies from Malawi and Nepal, which aimed to examine how overseas nurses encountered and overcame the challenges linked to recent recruitment and migration restrictions. We show how current UK immigration policy has had a negative impact on overseas nurses' lives. It has led them to explore alternative entry routes into the UK, affecting both the quality of their working lives and their future decisions about whether to stay or return to their home country. We conclude that the shifting forces of nursing workforce demand and supply, leading to abrupt policy changes, have significant implications on overseas nurses' lives, and can leave nurses ‘trapped’ in the UK. We make recommendations for UK policy-makers to work with key stakeholders in nurse-sending countries to minimize the negative consequences of unstable nurse recruitment, and we highlight the benefits of promoting circular migration.

Concepts: United Kingdom, Nursing, Nurse, Supply and demand, Political science, Nursing shortage, British Empire, Immigration to the United Kingdom since 1922