Theses, Dissertations, and other Required Graduate Degree Essays

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This collection contains digitized SFU theses except for those theses submitted within the last 12 months. If you cannot find the thesis you are looking for please search Recently Submitted Theses as it may be a recently submitted thesis and thus not yet available in Summit.

Tobacco industry targeting of youth in Nigeria since the 1990s: An analysis of tobacco industry documents

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-10-19
Abstract: 

This study analyses the tactics and strategies used by transnational tobacco companies (TTCs) to target youth in Nigeria since the 1990s. Nigeria is considered by the tobacco industry to be a major emerging market given its population, demographic profile, and growing wealth. The study systematically searched the Truth Tobacco Industry Documents Library, available primary and secondary sources on industry activities in Nigeria, and conducted key informant interviews. It applied the theory of triadic influence as a heuristic framework to analyse the collected data. The findings suggest that TTCs have actively targeted youth in Nigeria, seeking to change behaviour through the biological/personality, and environmental/cultural and social streams. This has taken place against a backdrop of weak tobacco control policy despite Nigeria’s adoption of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control. The study makes recommendations to strengthening youth protections under the National Tobacco Control Bill adopted into law in 2015.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Kelley Lee
Department: 
Health Sciences: Faculty of Health Sciences
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.

Query processing of schema design problems for data-driven renormalization

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-10-16
Abstract: 

In the past decades, more and more information has been stored or delivered in non-relational data models—either in NoSQL databases or via a Software as a Service (SaaS) application. Users often want to load these data sets into a BI application or a relational database for further analysis. The data-driven renormalization framework is often used to transform non-relational data into relational data. In this thesis, we explore how to help users to make design decisions in such a framework. We formally define two kinds of queries—the point query and the stable interval query—to help users making design decisions. We propose two index structures, which can represent a list of FDs concisely but also process the queries efficiently. We conduct experiments on two real datasets and show that our algorithms greatly outperform the baseline method when processing a large set of FDs.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Jian Pei
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Computing Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.

List homomorphism to irreflexive oriented trees

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-10-17
Abstract: 

Min ordering of a digraph $H$ plays an important role in deciding the existence of a list homomorphism to $H$. For reflexive oriented trees $T$, there exists a concrete forbidden induced subgraph characterization to have a min ordering. For irreflexive oriented trees $T$, the existence of a min-ordering turned out to be somewhat harder, as there are many types of obstructions to its existence. In this thesis, we first review the existing results for list homomorphism problems $LHOM(H)$ for digraphs and graphs. Second, for a specific subclass of irreflexive oriented trees, we present a concrete forbidden induced subgraph characterization to have a min ordering and to have an obstruction called invertible pair ($I$-$pair$) and digraph asteroidal triple ($DAT$). Moreover, for this subclass of irreflexive oriented trees $T$, we show that if $T$ contains one of the forbidden obstructions, then the problem $LHOM(T)$ is $NP$-complete, and is polynomial otherwise. Third, we discuss general trees, and present some approaches to find the minimal forbidden obstructions in the general case.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Pavol Hell
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Computing Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.

Use of hyperspectral remote sensing to examine immature blow fly development

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-11-01
Abstract: 

Medico-legal entomology, the study and application of insect science to criminal investigations, is most notably used to estimate a minimum post-mortem interval (minPMI). Examining blow fly development to make this estimation provides the minimum time it takes to reach the oldest stage associated with the remains. Unfortunately, providing the time it takes to reach a stage may underestimate the age of the insects during the lengthier post feeding stage and intra-puparial period. Hyperspectral remote sensing is introduced as a means to solve this issue and to examine the potential for narrowing these lengthier stages into days within the stages. Hyperspectral remote sensing involves sensing, recording and processing reflected and emitted energy to produce point source measurements. Spectral measurements of both immature Protophormia terraenovae and Lucilia sericata were completed from second instar to adult emergence from the mid-section, anterior and posterior ends of developing immature blow flies. Functional regressions and coefficient functions were examined for model prediction and generalization to identify demarcations within stadia to age the immature blow flies. Aging P. terraenovae larvae was successful at wavelengths ranging from 400-1000nm, however, at that wavelength range, only the last day of the intra-puparial period could be distinguished from the first five days. Immature Lucilia sericata were examined at a wider range of wavelengths (350-2500nm) and model prediction and generalization for both pupae and larvae was possible. Similarities and differences were found between species and potential contributing factors were considered such as range of wavelengths analyzed, food substrate, significance of washing away surface contaminants before measuring, contributions of cuticular hydrocarbons, and potential surface bacteria, best region to measure the immature blow fly and replication experiments. Hyperspectral remote sensing not only allows an entomologist to incorporate more precision in their estimate but error rates are also introduced which is required of a forensic science according to the National Academy of Sciences.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Gail Anderson
Department: 
Arts & Social Sciences: School of Criminology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) Ph.D.

An algorithmic study of kernel contraction in EL

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-09-13
Abstract: 

Kernel contraction is an interesting problem that can be considered a step towards belief revision. Kernels were introduced as a tool to determine why a given belief is accepted by the knowledge base. The aim of using kernels is to invalidate the reasons why that given belief is accepted, and hence rejecting that belief. We use Description Logic EL for two reasons: it is used in some large knowledge base applications, and it has a polynomial-time reasoning algorithm. In this study we introduce an algorithm that performs kernel contraction by reduction to the network-flow problem. We evaluate the rationality of the algorithm by applying postulates that govern kernel contraction. We also explain two heuristics: localization and specificity, that can be used to arrive at more reasonable and common-sense solutions. We will also be focusing on the complexity of the algorithms as an indicator of their feasibility.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
James Delgrande
Department: 
Applied Sciences: School of Computing Science
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.

Revealing place through art: A métissage of indwelling within thin places

Date created: 
2017-09-14
Abstract: 

This inquiry explores how artists are influenced by place - in particular our deep relationship with the natural world. This métissage approach weaves together poetic inquiry, life writing, and photographic inquiry - a multi-modal, multi-sensory, and heuristic pathway to seeking place. It is about evocation and provocation that comes from the indwelling of place, and the deep dialogic with place. Does place live within the artistic creation? How does place inform the geography of our embodied poetics? Does illness trespass on, or open an artist to synergies with place? Society traditionally asks artists to make meaning, to be the human vessel that translates. Place/nature asks artists not to generate meaning so much as to discern the meaning already there. This inquiry created an observational pathway that leads to a discernment of 'thin places', witnesses the communion as well as synergy of artist and place; and honours the way home.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Vicki Kelly
Department: 
Education: Faculty of Education
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

The Built Environment and Urban Crime Patterns: A spatial analysis of land use and property crime in Surrey, B.C.

Date created: 
2017-07-07
Abstract: 

As we grow our urban space, it is important to understand the influence of the built environment on criminal opportunity. Using a theoretical foundation that synthesizes routine activity theory and social disorganization theory, this study examines the spatial relationship between land use and property crime in a large metropolitan city. A series of spatial analyses were used to explore the geographic distribution of three types of property crime: residential break and enter, commercial break and enter, and theft of motor vehicle. Results found support not only for a spatial relationship between the built environment and property crime occurrences but also for the effect of the socio-economic variables of routine activity theory and social disorganization theory.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Martin Andresen
Bryan Kinney
Department: 
Arts & Social Sciences: School of Criminology
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Rogues Among Rebels: Entanglements between Irish Catholics and the Fishermen’s Protective Union of Newfoundland

Date created: 
2017-08-24
Abstract: 

This thesis explores the relationship between Newfoundland’s Irish Catholics and the largely English-Protestant backed Fishermen’s Protective Union (FPU) in the early twentieth century. The rise of the FPU ushered in a new era of class politics. But fishermen were divided in their support for the union; Irish-Catholic fishermen have long been seen as at the periphery—or entirely outside—of the FPU’s fold. Appeals to ethno-religious unity among Irish Catholics contributed to their ambivalence about or opposition to the union. Yet, many Irish Catholics chose to support the FPU. In fact, the historical record shows Irish Catholics demonstrating a range of attitudes towards the union: some joined and remained, some joined and then left, and others rejected the union altogether. Far from being beholden to the whims of clerics, political elites, or the structural dictates of the economy and of region, Irish-Catholic fishermen made their own decisions about membership. Nevertheless, the pressures of class and ethno-religious solidarities mediated their decisions to engage with the union. This thesis uses a combination of newspaper sources, church correspondence, oral histories, censuses, and election data to unearth the history of Irish Catholics’ complex relationship with the FPU, and argues that this relationship is an example of the entanglements of ethnicity and class in pre-Confederation Newfoundland.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Willeen Keough
Department: 
Arts & Social Sciences: Department of History
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.A.

Coloring cayley tables of finite groups

Date created: 
2017-08-08
Abstract: 

The chromatic number of a latin square L, denoted χ(L), is defined as the minimum number of partial transversals needed to cover all of its cells. It has been conjectured that every latin square L satisfies χ(L) ≤ |L| + 2. If true, this would resolve a longstanding conjecture, commonly attributed to Brualdi, that every latin square has a partial transversal of length |L|−1. Restricting our attention to Cayley tables of finite groups, we prove two results. First, we constructively show that all finite Abelian groups G have Cayley tables with chromatic number |G|+2. Second, we give an upper bound for the chromatic number of Cayley tables of arbitrary finite groups. For |G| ≥ 3, this improves the best-known general upper bound from 2|G| to 3 |G|, while yielding an even stronger result in infinitely many cases.

Document type: 
Thesis
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Luis Goddyn
Department: 
Science: Department of Mathematics
Thesis type: 
(Thesis) M.Sc.

Art-based placemaking at Renfrew Ravine: Implications for sustainable places

Author: 
Date created: 
2017-06-12
Abstract: 

This research explores the role of placemaking at Still Creek, Vancouver, Canada. Placemaking is an integrative approach to public space management that aims to foster both sense of place and sense of community through a citizen-driven process. At Still Creek, a non-profit organization is engaging their neighbourhood using an interdisciplinary approach of arts and stewardship in collaboration with several community partners. Findings suggest placemaking is occurring at Still Creek through three key activities (e.g. festival, art in place, and environmental stewardship and restoration). Still Creek has become a place of interest, care and advocacy among those involved suggesting sense of place is present along with several community building elements as well. Implications for sustainable places are also explored

Document type: 
Graduating extended essay / Research project
File(s): 
Senior supervisor: 
Sean Markey
Department: 
Environment: School of Resource and Environmental Management
Thesis type: 
(Project) M.R.M. (Planning)