septembre 2011

Archives

News from the social sciences and humanities

Milena Stanoeva
Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

What is the value of an arts degree? This seems to be the central question of this week’s news round-up.

The importance of the humanities and the skills afforded to students through a humanities education were particularly salient topics. In one case, it was argued that it helps students develop empathy, something that can be lacking in the “me generation.” “Humanists are specialists in an activity upon which all other disciplines depend, indeed, upon which we daily depend in everything we do: the making and assessment of meaning,” argued another recent column.

Universities are also recognizing the need to promote the values...

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Education Matters: Confronting Homophobia and Transphobia in Schools

Brian Burtch, Simon Fraser University
Guest Contributor

This entry is part of the CFHSS’s VP Equity Issues series on issues related to LGBTQI2-S (lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, questioning, intersex and Two-Spirited) peoples.

Our awareness of homophobia and transphobia in high schools has been heightened by a growing body of research and media commentary that is beginning to take seriously the dynamics of exclusion and resistance experienced by LGBTQ (lesbian, gay, bisexual, two-spirited, and questioning)...

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Disability research, digital innovations and online activism

Filippo Trevisan, University of Glasgow
Guest Contributor

This entry is part of the CFHSS’s VP Equity Issues series on diversity, creativity and innovation / diversité, innovation et créativité.

In 1980, disability scholar and activist Vic Finkelstein hypothesized a not too distant future in which “impaired persons will […] no longer be oppressed by disabling social conventions and disabling environments but will be absorbed in the mainstream of social interactions.” In his view, technological development was to be an important enabler of social change, and Information and Communication...

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Wangari Maathai – living the life of an engaged scholar (1940-2011)

Jean-Marc Mangin, Executive Director, CFHSS I first met Dr. Maathai face to face in September 2009 for a working breakfast in New York. Later that day, she was scheduled to address the UN General Assembly summit on climate change as the lone voice from civil society. The problem was that her speech (developed with the help of several umbrella NGOs and some UN officials) was an incoherent mess that attempted to please everyone. She knew it and I knew it and this last minute breakfast was our only chance to fix it. Nonetheless, she was smiling and laughing (and, unknown to me, already fighting her cancer). In the course of a couple of hours of mad but fun re-drafting, her unique voice re-emerged in the speech. These were the only sections that received spontaneous applause later that day. I worked again with Dr. Maathai when she attended the Copenhagen climate conference – she brought rare hope and can-do optimism to an international conference laden with...

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News from the social sciences and humanities

Milena Stanoeva Canadian Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

TD Canada released a report on the value of a post-secondary education last week. Among other benefits, the report finds that Canadians with post-secondary education enjoy higher rates of employment and higher annual salaries, more than making up for the cost of education. 

The Ministry of Industry announced the first round of Banting Postdoctoral Fellowship recipients. Congratulations to all of this year’s fellows.  

Former Statistics Canada chief statistician Munir Sheikh...

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Differences Matter: Innovations and people with disabilities

Gregor Wolbring, University of Calgary
Guest Contributor

This entry is part of the CFHSS’s VP Equity Issues series on diversity, creativity and innovation / diversité, innovation et créativité.

Innovation, according to Wikipedia, “generally refers to the creation of better or more effective products, processes, technologies, or ideas that are accepted by markets, governments, and society.”  Many of these innovations in scientific and technological products as well as novel ideas and theoretical concepts have implications for people with disabilities.

Today, we are witnessing...

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Diversity Should Power Science Research and Innovation

Scott E. Page, University of Michigan and Santa Fe Institute
Guest contributor

This entry is part of the CFHSS’s VP Equity Issues series on diversity, creativity and innovation / diversité, innovation et créativité.

Scientific inquiry proceeds most fruitfully when sufficient funding is spread across a complexity of disciplines to a diversity of researchers.

Whether put forth by Vannevar Bush, one of the godfathers of the military-industrial complex, or...

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Difference Matters: Diversity, Complexity and Innovation

Scott E. Page, University of Michigan
Guest contributor

This entry is part of the CFHSS’s VP Equity Issues series on diversity, creativity and innovation / diversité, innovation et créativité.

Most people believe that innovation requires smarter people, better ideas. That premise, though intuitive, omits what may be the most powerful but least understood force for innovation: Diversity.

Diversity usually calls to mind differences in race, gender, ethnicity, physical capabilities, and sexual orientation – social or political differences that at first glance have little to do...

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