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Vol 39  No 11
Mar. 15, 2007


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In Brief

Grenfell College chair awarded significant grant

Canada Research Chair Dr. Murray Rudd has been awarded a significant grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) Presidential Fund for Innovation and Development. Three grants, including Dr. Rudd’s, were awarded nationally as a result of a special competition on Capturing the Outcomes and Impacts of Canadian Research in the Social Sciences and Humanities.

“Research in the social sciences and humanities has the potential to improve the lives of Canadians in many ways; however, the pathways by which research has impacts on quality of life are not well understood. Further, it is very difficult to assess the ‘value’ of this research,” said Dr. Rudd, Grenfell College’s Canada Research Chair in Ecological Economics.

“In this project, I will be using some of the tools developed in the environmental economics field to understand and value research impacts,” he added. “Essentially, I will be assessing the trade-offs people are willing to make between different factors affecting their quality of life. For instance, are people willing to give up some financial wealth for a more vibrant culture? The research will involve a national internet survey of the public and extensive interviews with social science and humanities researchers. Our hope is that this project will help to clarify when and how social science and humanities research is a wise public investment.”

The grant, valued at $25,000, will support Dr. Rudd’s efforts to apply the economic valuation tools from environmental economics to assessing the non-market benefits of social sciences and humanities research.

Climate change messenger coming to Memorial

A live presentation of the slideshow given by Al Gore in the Oscar-winning movie An Inconvenient Truth is coming to Memorial University on March 28.

Peter Corbyn, a New Brunswick resident, recently completed a rigorous training program led by the former U.S. vice-president to spread the message about the threat of and solutions to global warming.

In his presentation, Mr. Corbyn will discuss how individuals, businesses, schools, and other organizations can be a major part of the solution to the growing crisis of global warming. He will also talk about the impact of climate change on Canada.

Mr. Corbyn, who has been involved with energy efficiency and climate change issues for 15 years, was part of a select group of individuals chosen to receive this training. Participants took part in an intensive tutorial about issues surrounding global warming, led by Mr. Gore and a team of renowned scientists and environmental educators.

The show is presented by Memorial’s Sustainability Office and takes place 7 p.m. in the Inco Centre, IIC-2001. For more information, contact Toby Rowe at 737-2637 or tobyr@mun.ca.

Biology in Britain returns

Last year the Biology Department ran a fundraiser at Harlow for the first time. Called Summer Gardens, it was a non-credit course designed to delight participants, tired perhaps of seeing the Newfoundland winter, and raise some money to help support Biology undergraduate students at Harlow.

With the success of last year’s Summer Gardens venture – which raised $800 to go towards the Biology undergraduate program at Harlow – organizers have planned to go again this year; offering participants an opportunity to see beautiful gardens and do a little sight-seeing.

The tour includes a direct flight, departing St. John’s April 27, returning May 9, a stay at Harlow campus and visits to “small” gardens like Vita Sackville-West’s Sissinghurst, Charles Darwin’s Down House and Jane Austen’s Chawton, contrasting with the famous large Kew and Wisley sites.

Anyone interested in attending should contact Margaret Burton at 737-3515 or burton@mun.ca, or Shena Quinton at 737-4357 or squinton@mun.ca.

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