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Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2017-09-01 - 2020-03-31

Social sustainable integration of disabled people (with rehabilitative social needs) in the working process of horticultural farms The objectives of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities as well as of the Austrian Action Plan 2012 (for implementation of an inclusive society) are the full and effective participation of disabled people in society. This project will provide scientific evidence, which will contribute to the integration of disabled people in the working society. The overall goal of the project is to provide all necessary information for a successful cooperation between day-care centers for disabled persons and private horticultural farms. The creation of such possibilities for a collaboration will offer disabled people a participation in general working life. The identification of suitable working processes and tasks requires the compilation of culture related activity and ability profiles for working processes or tasks. In order to be able to find out which crops require what kind of working skills, the tasks and sub-tasks referring to the crops cultivated by up to 6 representative Austrian horticultural farms must be identified. The method used is the classification of REFA time studies. In order to determine the skills and needs of disabled people in day-care centers, it is necessary to capture their abilities, by creating ability profiles for up to 50 persons. Based on these ability profiles, it is possible to allocate and categorize the necessary tasks. The ability profiles will be created mainly by means of the well-proven “IMBA method” (Integration of persons with disabilities in a working environment). In order to set up a fruitful collaboration, horticultural farms and day-care centers will be interviewed about their interests, needs and expectations. On the basis of this information, it will be possible to give recommendations for a sustainable collaboration. Based on the surveyed results and identified requirements, a training concept for nursing staff, company managers and trainers will be developed and optimized in order to guarantee a high degree of working quality and job satisfaction for both parties in the project (social sustainability, which offers socially produced products). The efficient knowledge transfer of scientific results will be ensured by the production of blended learning material, a recommendation booklet and guidance of the implementation carried out in pilot companies.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2017-04-01 - 2018-03-31

Agriculture has the responsibility to produce food, feed, fuels, and fibre in a sustainable way. In recent decades the conditions for agricultural production have changed in many ways; e.g. the increasing societal interest in the production of renewable energy and the improved understanding of the effects of climate change have highlighted the need to adapt agricultural practices to changing circumstances. Adaptation varies in nature; this project aims at optimizing agricultural production with a focus on technical and managerial aspects. The project’s first main objective seeks to increase energy efficiency in agriculture. In the first step, a comprehensive environmental evaluation of current crop management systems for grain production will be conducted at two selected sites in Austria. In the second step, we will modify the studied system to include the effects of technological climate change adaptation options that can reasonably be expected to increase the resilience and sustainability of the selected crop management systems. The third step will be to identify additional technology options for climate change adaptation and to conduct a screening evaluation of their effects on fossil fuel consumption and other environmental impacts. This step will encompass not only grain production but also grassland agriculture. The second main objective is to optimize the production of alternative fuel (biogas) for agricultural machines. Both agricultural residues and industrial organic wastes will be studied as inputs. The biodegradability of these organic materials will be increased through pre-treatment with the steam explosion technology. A key topic will be the investigation of integrating glycerol, oil, and fat. The biodegradability of the pre-treated organic materials will be analyzed and optimized in the laboratory. The final step of the second objective will be an analysis of different biogas utilization concepts, such as the liquefaction of biogas and peak-load power production in cluster biogas plants.
Research project (§ 26 & § 27)
Duration : 2017-03-01 - 2017-08-31

Ergonomically designed jobs are currently seen as a major contribution to the prevention of musculoskeletal disorders and to jobs that are aging and gender-appropriate. In order to benefit from the advantages of ergonomics for the benefits of the economy and a process of humanization, ergonomic information that is generated through research and experience is required by companies and households. There is, however, a considerable delay in the transfer of knowledge between the sources of ergonomic knowledge production and the implementation of these new findings. This is due to the considerable deficit of multipliers. It will therefore be particularly important to identify and instruct all institutions involved in the transfer of knowledge, to act in a networked manner and, above all, to use their strengths and compensate the weaknesses. In order to implement prospective ergonomics more intensively in the national economy, the first step is to bundle and intensify university education and training in ergonomics in Austria. The aim of this project study is therefore to show which institutions, universities and technical colleges, in Austria, offer university degrees in which quality and quantity in ergonomics. The project has the objectives to create a list of universities and technical colleges that offer ergonomic teaching contents, a descriptive description of the existing contents as well as the categorization and clustering of the teaching contents according to the parameters that are relevant for the courses. The selection of the institutions takes place according to the current state of knowledge on the internet as well as survey information. Relevant internet and survey information on the teaching of ergonomics of about 30 providers are recorded. The data are analyzed descriptively and analytically in a spreadsheet program as well as in SAS and described. The most meaningful results on the content of teaching and methods of the Austrian institutions are presented in tabular and graphical form.

Supervised Theses and Dissertations