Contents
vii
1. Reinforcing the Classroom ..................................................................................1
1.1 Introduction ......................................................................................................... 1
1.2 Need for Reinforcement ......................................................................................
2
1.3 Bridging the Gap .................................................................................................
3
1.4 Summary .............................................................................................................
6
2. Natural Plant Fibers for Engineering Applications: Technocentric and Ecocentric
Dimensions of Sustainability ...............................................................................
7
2.1 Introduction ......................................................................................................... 7
2.2 Natural Plant Fibers ............................................................................................
7
2.3 Properties .............................................................................................................
8
2.4 Engineering Applications ..................................................................................
12
2.4.1 Automotive Materials ............................................................................
13
2.4.2 Building Materials .................................................................................
13
2.4.3 Geo-Environmental Materials ..............................................................
14
2.5 Summary ...........................................................................................................
14
3. The Coir Fiber Industry in Kerala, India: Sociocentric Dimension of
Sustainability .................................................................................................... 17
3.1 Introduction ....................................................................................................... 17
3.2 Global and Local History ..................................................................................
18
3.3 Coir Processing ..................................................................................................
19
3.4 Technology ........................................................................................................
23
3.5 Culture
............................................................................................................... 24
3.6 Stakeholders and the Commodity Chain ..........................................................
28
4. Case Study ........................................................................................................ 31
4.1 Introduction ....................................................................................................... 31
4.2 Methodology .....................................................................................................
31
4.2.1 Interviews ..............................................................................................
31
4.2.2 Data Collected .......................................................................................
33
4.3 Results ............................................................................................................... 35
4.3.1 Global Competition ..............................................................................
36
4.3.2 Technology ............................................................................................
37
4.3.3 Middlemen ............................................................................................
38
4.3.4 Summary ...............................................................................................
38
4.4 Analysis and Discussion ....................................................................................
38
4.4.1 Global Coir Market ...............................................................................
39
4.4.2 Market Failures ......................................................................................
40
4.5 Recommendations for What Can Be Done ......................................................
44
4.6 Ideas for Implementation ..................................................................................
47
4.7 Summary ...........................................................................................................
48
5. Conclusion .......................................................................................................51
Bibliography .............................................................................................................. 53
Author Biography ...................................................................................................... 57
viii BRIDGING THE GAP BETWEEN ENGINEERING AND THE GLOBAL WORLD

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