Taylor & Francis Newsroom

, Oxford.

Sex no longer sells for American Apparel – but focusing on ethics might

A recent study of consumer reactions to American Apparel’s sexualised ad campaigns has discovered that the company’s controversial approach is likely to be doing it more harm than good.

Writing in the Journal of Global Fashion Marketing, Su Yun Bae and colleagues examined consumer reactions to ads posted by American Apparel (AA) on their own Facebook page. To provide a comparison, the researchers also looked at responses to ads posted on the Facebook page of another company also known for its controversial campaigns, Dolce & Gabbana.

Instead of being a turn-on, the study found that many consumers thought the AA ads a distinct turn-off.  Facebook users regularly posted negative comments about the ads, using words like ‘cheap’, ‘sleazy’ and ‘objectifying’. They also expressed concern about the effect such images might have on young people. In addition, many potential customers thought AA’s approach to advertising ‘boring’; others stated they were unlikely to buy the company’s clothing because they didn’t want to be associated with a ‘trashy’ brand.

‘It seems that AA’s method is suboptimal in appealing to consumers to ultimately enhance brand loyalty and increase profitability,’ the authors conclude bluntly.

By way of comparison, consumers did not seem to object in the same way to Dolce & Gabbana’s continued portrayal of women as equally sexually objectified ‘sexy housewives’. “AA’s sexual objectification appears to be much more risky and dangerous than D&G’s stereotyped gender roles and objectification of women,” they conclude.

So what next for the troubled fashion chain, whose stock price has recently plummeted? The researchers suggest that the time may now have come for AA to change tactics. They recommend that AA drop the sexualised ads in favour of promoting their clothes in a non-sexualised way or by focusing on the company’s popular and well-regarded ‘Made in America’ and ‘sweatshop-free’ ethical claims.

They write: “Considering the brand’s financial struggles and media criticism, it would seem to be wise for AA to cease its inappropriate marketing campaigns and focus on ethical marketing claims. It is perhaps time for the company to consider its social responsibility role from both an ideological (e.g. AA’s sweatshop-free claims) and a utilitarian ethical viewpoint (e.g. financial productivity through ethical claims and brand reputation) in order to balance corporate social responsibility and profitability.”

This article is a fascinating insight into what appears to be a clear disconnect between a company’s marketing approach and the views of a large part of its target market. It’s also a reminder of how women’s bodies continue to be objectified in the media in the name of increasing sales – but perhaps not for much longer in the case of AA. 

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/20932685.2015.1032317

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information, please contact:
Imogen Catling
Marketing Coordinator, Taylor & Francis
Email: imogen.catling@tandf.co.uk

, Oxford.

How does being ‘on-call’ impact employee fatigue?

With the growing demands of consumerism and the need to assist customers on the clock, today’s employees are working anything but nine to five. One in five EU employees is working on-call, but how does this arrangement stack up for labourers? Recently published research in Ergonomics monitors a group of 169 male Dutch distal on-call technicians and investigates the connections between high levels of work fatigue, need for recovery and the status of being on-call and off-call.  The study suggested that the mere possibility of being called heightens the need for recovery among shift workers.

By examining the impact of physical, psychological, family, and work-related causes on job-induced tiredness, this research reveals that, despite high job demands, the mere experience of being on-call is a major cause of fatigue in the workplace.

Whilst past research has highlighted the negative effects of unstable working patterns on staff members – emphasising their association with high need for recovery, health complaints and sickness absence – most studies have focused on proximal on-call employment in the medical profession, neglecting to consider off-site workers. This research considers if employees report higher levels of fatigue when ‘on-call but not called’ compared with ‘not on-call’. Analysing the link between participants’ age, health, work and social characteristics with need for recovery was also a key objective for the research. A study questionnaire was circulated to the group, confirming the highest need for recovery when ‘on-call and called’, and the lowest when ‘not on-call’. Poor mental and physical health together with high work demands and substantial work-family interference were also associated with higher need for recovery irrespective of the on-call scenario, whereas age and care for children appeared to be irrelevant.

In conclusion, the possibility of being called increases the need for recovery among shift workers, especially for those with mental health issues and challenging work and family circumstances. While evidence suggests giving staff the opportunity to design their own schedule may help to minimise the deleterious effects of shift work, improving the experience of being on-call is still in much need of further research.

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/00140139.2015.1046498

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information, please contact:
Daniel Hall
Marketing Executive, Taylor & Francis
Email: Daniel.Hall@tandf.co.uk

, Oxford.

Bitcoin virtual currency users and motivations: a haven for criminals?

Launched in 2009, there are now 13.4 million Bitcoins in circulation with a market value of $4.6 billion; thousands of businesses accept Bitcoins.  Bitcoin is an unregulated, near anonymous virtual payment method.  Account holders use an encrypted electronic signature for payment, which amongst others, may attract those with something to hide.  Recent research in the Journal of Applied Economic Letters builds on existing research and anecdotal evidence, using Google Trends data to examine Bitcoin interest and potential user profiles. 

Past research on Bitcoin usage revealed 3 key motivations; curiosity, profit making and politics.  Authors Yelowitz & Wilson analyse Google Trends search data for terms related to Bitcoin and its users.  They focused on 4 possible clientele groups; tech enthusiasts, investors, anti-establishment and criminals.  Each group has a sensible rationale for using Bitcoin:  programmers can ‘mine’ for more Bitcoins by authenticating transactions.  Marked Bitcoin price fluctuations attract potential investors.  Those seeking liberty from the central banks feel the benefit of Bitcoin and criminals have been able to safely and anonymously trade online in drugs and fake passports using Bitcoins.  The authors conducted a 31 month time series in several US states for the popularity of Bitcoin in each group.

The results of this unprecedented systematic review revealed definite correlations between computer programmers and Bitcoin and illegal activity and Bitcoin.  No such link was established for the other 2 potential market segments.  During the period of the study the authors observed highest Bitcoin interest in Utah, Oregon, California, Washington, Nevada, New Hampshire and Vermont.   Against the odds the authors have successfully overridden past suppositions to reveal clear facts about Bitcoin users.

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13504851.2014.995359

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life. As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, e-books and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.  From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information please contact:
Rhian Evans, Marketing Executive
Journals Marketing
email: rhian.evans@tandf.co.uk

, Oxford.

Profit, people and planet: balancing revenue vs. responsibility in fashion

Businesses within the fashion industry face many ethical decisions over the importance of profit vs. social responsibility. Exploitation is rife in developing countries where cheap, unregulated labour is readily available. Illegal environmental damage caused by clothing production can often have catastrophic effects on local communities.  Recent research in the International Journal of Fashion Design, Technology and Education explores teaching methods to educate fashion undergraduates on socially responsible practices in the fashion industry.  

Yurchisin et al set out to discover fashion students’ ability to comprehend, respond and take action to counter the negative social and environmental effects of the fashion industry. They observed a group of 75 US fashion undergraduates reading Timmerman’s book ‘Where am I Wearing:  A Global Tour to the Countries, Factories and People that Make Our Clothes’ which documents his world-wide travels to factories manufacturing his favourite apparel.  His first-hand accounts enabled the students to critically assess issues of social responsibility in the fashion industry.  The students conducted ‘journaling’; written accounts of their thoughts and ideas about the issues at stake in the book.  This focused on 5 key areas; economics, women and children, environment, standards of living and future action.  They discussed the pros and cons of cheap labour in developing countries, child labour and cases of environmental damage.  Most importantly students were motivated to propose future actions and ideas to improve working and living conditions for fashion industry labourers.  Many pledged to be more responsible as consumers and to implement clear labelling on garments they produce.

This study has shown written reflection to be an effective teaching method to enable students to build on thought process and gain deep and insightful understanding of social responsibility.  Students interpreted issues and developed cultural knowledge, skills and considerate values to be applied when making decisions in their future professional careers. The authors conclude “In this case, journaling may be an effective method to teach students about social responsibility, where educators can also gain insight on students’ progression and development.”

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/17543266.2015.1049220

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information, please contact:

Lauren Harvey, Taylor & Francis Group

Email: lauren.harvey@tandf.co.uk

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, Oxford.

Stressing about your maths test? Your problem-solving abilities might suffer

That our emotional state can affect our cognitive functions can be all too clear to anyone struggling to complete a mental task under pressure. What has been less clear, until now, is whether that relationship between our emotions and our abilities can change over a period of time.

To explore that connection, Kelly Trezise and Robert A. Reeve from the University of Melbourne decided to investigate how an emotional state (in this case, worry, in the form of Math Anxiety) affected the working memory (WM) of students preparing for an algebra test.

To do this, the pair subjected 133 high-school students to a series of tests designed to test their working memory and levels of worry over the course of a day.

Writing in the journal Cognition and Emotion, the researchers conclude that both working memory and levels of worry can change over a short period of time – even a day – with any change to either worry levels or working memory affecting the ability to solve problems. Significantly, just how much effect worry has on working memory (and problem solving) depends on how much working-memory capacity one has in the first place. Moreover, levels of worry and working memory also seem to have an effect on each other – but not in the linear way we might have expected.

The researchers conclude: “On the basis of the final model, a student with initial higher WM and lower Worry will likely maintain WM and Worry levels and algebraic problem solving accuracy would remain high. Conversely, for a student with low WM and high Worry, WM is likely to decrease, Worry increase and problem solving would be impaired.”

“Thus the model suggests that what begins as relatively small differences between individuals in WM and Worry, though their mutual iterative differences, would lead to much larger differences.”

More research needs to be done on the influence other factors like feedback, pressure and location have on the complex relationship between WM and worry, but Trezise and Reeve’s findings already have important implications. Understanding just how stable (or temporary) worry, like the all-too-common Math Anxiety, is may help to prevent or treat it in future. 

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02699931.2014.1002755

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life. As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, e-books and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine. 

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues. 

For more information please contact: 
Claire Thomas, Senior Marketing Executive, Behavioral Science Journals 
email: claire.thomas@tandf.co.uk

, Oxford.

Because it’s not worth it: deceptive claims in cosmetics advertising

If you’re sceptical about the claims made by cosmetics firms about the attributes of their lotions and potions, you’re not alone. A study by US academics just published in the Journal of Global Fashion Marketing shows how little truth there seems to be in those glossy magazine ads – as well as how unlikely we are to believe them anyway.

Jie G. Fowler, Timothy Reisenwitz and Les Carson examined 289 full-page cosmetics ads from the April 2013 issues of seven fashion titles such as Vogue, Glamour and Marie Claire. The ads studied covered a wide range of product categories, such as make-up, facial skincare, body products, fragrance, hair and nail products.

The researchers first divided the claims made in the glossy ads into categories, including ‘environmental claims’ (‘no testing on animals’), endorsement claims (‘recommended by dermatologists’) and ‘scientific claims’ (‘clinically proven’). A panel of three judges then classified the claims made into one of four categories of truthfulness: ‘outright lie’, ‘omission’, ‘vague’ and ‘acceptable’.

In the end, only 18% of all claims made by the cosmetics companies were deemed ‘acceptable’ by the panel. Just 14% of ‘scientific’ claims were deemed acceptable, as opposed to 50% of those made about a product’s environmental attributes. Even more troubling for women worried about their wrinkles, the panel judged only 25.1% of performance claims to be acceptable, with 23% deemed to be an ‘outright lie’.

In addition to how unlikely consumers seem to be persuaded by the claims made in glossy magazines, the research also draws attention to the quirks of the regulatory processes by which ‘grey-area’ products like cosmeceuticals are considered to be a drug or a cosmetic – which in turn influence how a product can be marketed. “Categorization as a drug subjects the product to extensive regulatory requirements for new drugs,” the authors write, “so, ironically, cosmeceutical marketers do not want to prove the efficacy of their product, since drug regulation would then apply. Consequently, cosmeceutical advertising needs to attract consumers, but not regulators.”

The authors also note that given their results and the clear disbelief expressed by the judges regarding the cosmetic claims put before them, consumers (at least as represented by the judges) are already sceptical of product claims and are likely to consider them lies, omitting important information, or too vague to be of use.  Their observations thus have implications for advertisers, who, it seems, need to promote their products to customers increasingly distrustful that miracles can really be found in a jar.

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/20932685.2015.1032319

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information please contact:

Louise Phillips, Marketing Executive, Taylor & Francis Journals

email: louise.phillips@tandf.co.uk

, Oxford.

When plane spotting is more than just a hobby - CIA detention and torture in Europe and the tracking of rendition aircrafts

International human rights law is one of the greatest achievements of the human race. Yes, it is often infringed. But while we expect autocratic regimes to violate civil liberties, what if democracies were breaching them too? A new study from Taylor & Francis examines the tracking of the CIA’s rendition aircrafts and claims human rights have been violated in the very heart of Europe by a number of countries in connivance with the US secret services.

Published in The International Journal of Human Rights, the research reveals the tracking of rendition aircrafts carrying suspect terrorists has been integral to shed new light on to the CIA’s retention, detention and interrogation (RDI) programme. Examining findings from The Rendition Project, a collaboration between academics at Kent and Kingston universities and the NGO Reprieve, the study uncovers the involvement of a number of European states in providing vital logistical support to the US secret services, demonstrating the analysis of covert operations can further human rights research.

On July 2014, the European Convention of Human Rights (ECtHR) found Poland guilty of contravening international human rights by allowing the US secret services to hold and torture suspect terrorists on its soil. For the first time ‘a court had established … that European territory had been used in the War on Terror to house so-called “black sites”’, a network of secret prisons run by the CIA with support from local governments, explain the academics leading the study. These black sites were part of a wide system of detention facilities connected by hundreds of rendition flights used to transfer prisoners through sites, and either operated by commercial companies, or the CIA itself, in the early 2000s. Identifying these aircrafts was crucial to map the evolution of the RDI programme over the years and held perpetrators to account.

Thanks to a group of human rights investigators and journalists who started to record the movements of suspicious aircrafts using flight data, a first picture of the CIA’s secret detention programme in Europe started to emerge; this led to the identification of Romania and Lithuania, in addition to Poland, as crucial European nodes for the operation. But it was only after 2010, following the collaboration between The Rendition Project and the NGO Reprieve, that the inquiry really gained momentum and culminated with the publication of The Rendition Flight Database in 2013: the most comprehensive public account of the CIA’s covert activities, including over 60 identified rendition operations and over 11,000 flights by over 200 aircrafts. This data, triangulated with first-hand accounts, memoranda and declassified government documents, brought to the reconstruction of meaningful flight circuits, as well as to the identification of the pattern and practice of rendition flights in the War on Terror.

Whereas further research into this matter is still needed, this study is key in showing that tracking rendition aircrafts can truly help to identify human rights violations and secure legal remedy. Moreover, in underlining the value of collaborations between scholars and human rights investigators in uncovering abuse, it puts them at the very heart of the fight to protect worldwide democracy and freedom.

Tracking rendition aircraft as a way to understand CIA secret detention and torture in Europe
Sam Raphael, Crofton Black, Ruth Blakeley & Steve Kostas
The International Journal of Human Rights

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About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life. As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, e-books and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.  From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information please contact:
Joseph Couchman, Marketing Executive
Journals Marketing
email: joseph.couchman@tandf.co.uk

, Philadelphia.

Study suggests clear connection between wireless devices and cancer

A metabolic imbalance caused by radiation from your wireless devices could be the link to a number of health risks, such as various neurodegenerative diseases and cancer, a recent study suggests.

'Oxidative Mechanisms of Biological Activity of Low-intensity Radiofrequency Radiation', a review article published in Electromagnetic Biology & Medicine, explores experimental data on the metabolic effects of low-intensity radiofrequency radiation in living cells.

This imbalance, also known as oxidative stress, is defined by co-author Dr. Igor Yakymenko as, “an imbalance between the production of reactive oxygen species (ROS) and antioxidant defence.”

Yakymenko explains the oxidative stress due to RFR exposure could explain not only cancer, but also other minor disorders such as headache, fatigue, and skin irritation, which could develop after long-term RFR exposure.

“These data are a clear sign of the real risks this kind of radiation poses for human health,” Yakymenko said. 

The article explains that ROS are often produced in cells due to aggressive environments, and can also be provoked by “ordinary wireless radiation.”

Up-to-date research demonstrates possible carcinogenic effects of radiofrequency (RFR)/microwave radiation. In 2011, the International Agency for Research on Cancer classified RFR as a possible carcinogen for humans. But clear molecular mechanisms of such effects of RFR were a bottleneck in acceptance of a reality of risk.

The article demonstrates that the hazardous effects of RFR could be realized through the “classical mechanisms” of oxidative impairments in living cells.

Yakymenko and his colleagues call for a precautionary approach in using wireless technologies, such as cell phones and wireless Internet.

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* Read the full article online:http://informahealthcare.com/stoken/default+domain/IEBM_Press_7.2015/abstract/10.3109/15368378.2015.1043557

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.   From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information please contact: 
Carolan DiFiore
Journals Marketing Associate
carolan.difiore@taylorandfrancis.com

, Oxford.

What are the causes and effects of increased gaming in adolescent girls and boys?

Technological innovations, multiple genres, online gaming and mobile apps have led gaming to become big business.  Call of Duty Black Ops sold 1.4 million copies and registered 2.6 million Xbox Live players on launch day.  Adolescents increasingly use gaming for a significant part of their leisure time.  New research in the Journal of Youth Studies examines World Health Organisation data on adolescent well-being collected from over 4,000 children aged 11-15 to determine why some adolescents gaming habits are escalating.  The author reflects on gender, age, policy, parental influences and outcomes for adolescents.

About half of all adolescents are gaming for two or more hours per day, spending more time at home and less time out socialising. There are well-documented risks to social development, physiology, sleep, mental health and school performance.  Further hypotheses of reduced empathy and propensity for aggression remain unproven.  On the plus side gaming is shown to benefit motivational skills, tenacity, problem solving and strategic thinking.  So how much is too much? Why are some adolescents exceeding healthy levels of gaming? 

Policy recommendations for use of electronic media are two hours per day in the US, UK and Australia.  Parental monitoring methods are increasingly recognised as a significant factor. Many parents monitor ‘co-play’, partly to scrutinise content the child is exposed to.  Children whose parents regularly monitor usage were less likely to go above two hours.  Those whose parents were very controlling became defiant, pushing up usage, but many reported no parental input at all. 

Children with mixed gender friend groups game for longer, an indicator of the increase in sociable group gaming.  Early adolescents game longer than 15 year olds, a likely pointer to educational stage and development.  Gender affects time spent gaming; boys are three times more likely than girls to spend over six hours gaming per week.   Across both genders gaming provides an escape from stress; in boys from bullying and girls from discontentment.  Boys with higher levels reported frequent hunger at bedtime, which may be evidence of gaming interfering with meal times.  The author concludes “gendered interventions may be necessary to address successfully those who are engaging in very high levels of gaming with the associated negative consequences to their overall well-being”.

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13676261.2015.1048200

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.   From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information please contact:
Rebecca Bray
Taylor & Francis Journals
Email: rebecca.bray@tandf.co.uk

, Oxford.

Could camouflage be the secret to success in football?

Researchers conclude that while use of camouflage and intelligent colour have proven to be vital in the army for more than a century, football kit colours are still not acknowledged as a possible success factor.

Two separate studies concerning the relationship between the colour of a team’s shirt and visibility were recently conducted, leading to striking conclusions that were published in 'Science and Medicine in Football', the regular supplement of Journal of Sports Sciences.

In the first experiment, students were asked to try and make a correct assessment of the positions of computer-animated football players who were dressed in different colours.  It was shown that a white uniform resulted in the best location assessment. As white outfits were significantly better assessed than green outfitted players’ in a virtual football environment in 5.2% of the trials, it may follow that the ability to successfully pass a ball to a teammate relies directly to the colour of the jerseys of the team. Therefore, it seems a possibility that a team completes more successful passes when wearing high-visible kits.

In the second study, derived from an analysis of the relationship between seasonal results and away outfit’ colours of nine Premier League teams over 17 years, the researchers found that two Premier League clubs’ results: Manchester City and Newcastle United, correlated with a certain degree of visibility of shirts. The researchers argue that the found correlations are ‘preliminary’ outcomes, the results support that the application of smart use of colour may support a team’s style of play.

“…wearing low contrast, camouflaging uniforms may lead to an increase in defensive abilities of teams with a predominant defensive strategy”

Based on their findings, the researchers hypothesize that teams with an attacking style of play such as the former Champions League winner Real Madrid and World Cup champions Germany may have benefitted from the increased visibility of teammates through wearing highly visible (white) kits.

On the contrary, wearing low contrast, camouflaging uniforms may lead to an increase in defensive abilities of teams with a predominant defensive strategy. This hypothesis lead to the striking conclusion that, for attacking-style teams unable to reign on the pitch (such as the England national football team last year), wearing white uniforms may have be a distinct disadvantage.

The authors reason that one can acquire important clues for the application of intelligent colour use in football from the majestic evolutions in the animal kingdom: “Take for example the biological ingenuity seen in stick-insects; as they lack large claws and teeth or venom, they make sure that they blend in perfectly with the environment, so that they can thrive when overlooked by the larger predators.”

While further research is needed to elaborate on the new perspectives, managers seeking opportunities to improve their teams by that crucial few percent may wish to explore the possibilities of applying the gained insights into their new 15-16’s season colours.

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* Read the full article online:http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02640414.2015.1064156

About Taylor & Francis Group

Taylor & Francis Group partners with researchers, scholarly societies, universities and libraries worldwide to bring knowledge to life.  As one of the world’s leading publishers of scholarly journals, books, ebooks and reference works our content spans all areas of Humanities, Social Sciences, Behavioural Sciences, Science, and Technology and Medicine.

From our network of offices in Oxford, New York, Philadelphia, Boca Raton, Boston, Melbourne, Singapore, Beijing, Tokyo, Stockholm, New Delhi and Johannesburg, Taylor & Francis staff provide local expertise and support to our editors, societies and authors and tailored, efficient customer service to our library colleagues.

For more information, please contact:

James Collyer, Marketing Executive, Taylor & Francis Group.
Email: James.Collyer@tandf.co.uk