Tuesday June 5, 2018


Innovation Award

Laurier professor wins prestigious international award for innovative teaching

Waterloo – Stephen MacNeil, an associate professor of chemistry and biochemistry at Wilfrid Laurier University, is one of five professors across the country to be honoured with a 2018 D2L Innovation Award in Teaching and Learning. The award is presented by the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE) and D2L, the creators of the Brightspace online learning management system. It honours postsecondary educators who demonstrate innovation in their teaching practices.

Home Sales

KW Shows Strong Home Sales In May

Last month home sales through the Multiple Listing System of the Kitchener-Waterloo Association of REALTORS® (KWAR) were up 12.5 per cent compared to last month and down 15.3 per cent compared to last year’s record-setting May. A total of 692 residential properties sold in May compared to 817 the same time last year.

Advance Manufacturing

Super Cluster Leadership Gathering Set for June 26

Focus on Regional Collaboration to Drive Global Competitiveness

Hamilton - Excitement is building in the lead up to the inaugural Canada’s Innovation Corridor Summit on June 26 from 8 am to 4 pm at Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington, Ontario. This marquee leadership event is an initiative of Canada’s Innovation Corridor Business Council, a partnership of leading chambers of commerce and boards of trade located in Southern Ontario. The council represents the collective voice of more than 21,000 businesses, large and small. It is strengthened by a Business Advisory Council of CEOs operating in the corridor.

2018 Provincial Election - Maps

Latest Seat Projections

The Laurier Institute for the Study of Public Opinion and Policy (LISPOP) has released its latest seat projection for the June 7 Ontario election and it shows the NDP surge has stopped, with support declining slightly, putting them neck and neck with the Tories in popular support. Because the Conservative vote is more evenly distributed, if an election were held now, LISPOP projects a Conservative majority win.

ICI Construction

Building the Future of Construction

A new report from the World Economic Forum considers new digital technologies and megatrends and recommends preparatory actions and concludes that companies in the engineering and construction industry must act now to avoid future disruption; The report presents three scenarios: building in a virtual world; factories run the world; and a green reboot

Geneva, Switzerland – Dramatic changes on the horizon indicate an uncertain future for the engineering and construction (E&C) industry and its more than 100 million employees worldwide. Advancing digital technologies, which include building information modelling, prefabrication, wireless sensors, automated and robotic equipment and 3D printing, are affecting the entire industry. The substantial impact of full-scale digitization could help the industry escape its decades-long lack of productivity progress and generate an estimated $1.0 trillion-$1.7 trillion in annual cost savings.

Real-time sentiment

Government of Canada Makes Use of Cutting-Edge Canadian Artificial Intelligence for Real-Time G7 Theme Analytics

Waterloo – OpenText announced the launch of a real-time sentiment analysis tool developed for the Government of Canada to help them understand media and social opinion on the themes of Canada’s 2018 G7 Presidency: Investing in growth that works for everyone, Preparing for jobs of the future, Advancing gender equality and women’s empowerment, Working together on climate change, oceans and clean energy and Building a more peaceful and secure world.


Canada: GDP (Q1 and March)

HSBC says Slower GDP growth in Q1, but encouraging details

GDP grew by 1.3% in Q1, which was below expectations, though business investment was a bright spot; There are nascent signs of a rebalancing from consumption and residential investment toward business investment and exports; The GDP deflator rose by 1.5% year-on-year suggesting that there might be less inflation pressure than indicated by the consumer price report.

Union Viewpoint

Unjustified U.S. Tariffs on Canadian Steel, Aluminum Will Harm Jobs, Economy in Both Countries

There is no justification, either on economic or national security grounds, for the imposition of U.S. steel and aluminum tariffs on Canada, says the United Steelworkers (USW), which represents tens of thousands of steel and aluminum workers in both countries. "Canada has been exempted from such tariffs in the past because all evidence demonstrates that there are no economic or security reasons whatsoever to warrant such measures," USW Canadian Director Ken Neumann said on June 1, 2018.


Pipe Line & Oil

Why build a pipeline if we prohibit oil tanker traffic?

The federal government's Bill C-48 would indefinitely ban most oil tankers loading or unloading anywhere on the B.C. north coast - By Ken Green

While the Trans Mountain pipeline saga grabs headlines across the country, Bill C-48, which indefinitely bans most oil tankers loading or unloading anywhere on British Columbia's north coast, recently had its third reading in Parliament. The bill, which must still pass through the Senate, erects yet another barrier to exporting Canadian oil to markets in Asia, where that oil can command a significantly higher price than it does today when sold in a glutted (and shrinking) American market.

Art & Culture

Why theater is essential to democracy

Truth comes from the collision of different ideas, and theater plays an essential role in showing us that truth, says legendary artistic director Oskar Eustis. In this powerful talk, Eustis outlines his plan to reach (and listen to) people in places across the US where the theater, like many other institutions, has turned its back -- like the deindustrialized Rust Belt. "Our job is to try to hold up a vision to America that shows not only who all of us are individually, but that welds us back into the commonality that we need to be," Eustis says. "That's what the theater is supposed to do."

Tariff Dance

Canada Announces Surtaxes in Response to U.S. Tariffs

Many Canadian importers and exporters face punitive new tariffs that will start as early as June 1, 2018. The United States recently announced that it will impose a 25% tariff on steel and a 10% tariff on aluminum imports that will apply on a wide range of products imported into the United States from Canada, Mexico and the European Union. In response to the new tariffs, Canada has announced its own countermeasures to impose surtaxes on imports of steel, aluminum and other various products.

Night-Sky Cooling

How we can turn the cold of outer space into a renewable resource

What if we could use the cold darkness of outer space to cool buildings on earth? In this mind-blowing talk, physicist Aaswath Raman details the technology he's developing to harness "night-sky cooling" -- a natural phenomenon where infrared light escapes earth and heads to space, carrying heat along with it -- which could dramatically reduce the energy used by our cooling systems (and the pollution they cause). Learn more about how this approach could lead us towards a future where we intelligently tap into the energy of the universe.

Agriculture - Opinion

Farmers lose with approval of Bayer acquisition of Monsanto, says NFU

Saskatoon, SK – On May 30, 2018 Canada’s Competition Bureau approved Bayer’s acquisition of Monsanto with conditions, one day after the United States Justice Department announced its approval of the deal. Monsanto is with world’s largest seed company; Bayer is the world’s largest pesticide company. Both companies also sell digital agriculture systems, with Monsanto’s being the most widely used. The new company will become the world’s largest integrated digital agriculture, seed and pesticide company. The European Union, Brazil, Russia and China also approved the deal.


Taxpayers on Hook for Ottawa’s Pension Shortfall

Taxpayers are on the hook for the unfunded liability of pension plans for federal employees, according to a new report published by the C.D Howe Institute. In “Retiring Employees, Unretired Debt: The Surprising Hidden Cost of Federal Employee Pensions” authors William B.P. Robson and Alexandre Laurin argue that official figures for federal pension obligations understate future costs and leave many plans seriously underfunded.


Unwrapped Mummy

Micro-CT scans show 2,100-year-old ‘hawk’ mummy a stillborn baby

A tiny Egyptian mummy long believed to be that of a hawk is actually a rare example of a near-to-term, severely malformed fetus, says an examination led by mummy expert Andrew Nelson of Western University.


Waterloo joins world’s research leaders to advance blockchain and cryptography

The University of Waterloo will join top universities across the globe on an initiative designed to advance research and innovation in blockchain, cryptography and digital payment systems. As the only Canadian participant in Ripple’s University Blockchain Research Initiative, Waterloo will help contribute to the world’s research capacity in cryptocurrency and blockchain. The program will support the Ripple Chair, named to Anwar Hasan a professor of computer engineering who is an expert in cryptography, graduate studies scholarships designed to attract new talent, and a new research fund.

Immigration & Provincial Election

Ontario Election 2018 Candidate Survey Question Results

Waterloo Region has a long history of welcoming immigrants and refugees. At the time for the 2016 Census, immigrants and refugees accounted for 22.6% of the population. They face consistent challenges to settling, working, and developing a strong sense of belonging in Waterloo Region.

Global Eats

UNWTO World Forum on Gastronomy Tourism – Seizing the Power of Technology

Madrid, Spain - Around 600 participants from 52 countries gathered at the 4th UNWTO World Forum on Gastronomy Tourism (Bangkok, Thailand, 30 May to 1 June 2018). Organized by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the Government of Thailand, in collaboration with the Basque Culinary Center, participants addressed topics ranging from the role of technology in achieving sustainable development, to linking the whole tourism value chain to gastronomy.


Smart City

Waterloo region named Smart Cities finalist

Waterloo Region – On June 1 it was announced that Waterloo region as one of five finalists in the large municipalities category of the Smart Cities Challenge, a new, competition-based approach that encourages communities to come up with innovative solutions to their most pressing challenge.

City Challenges

Big City Mayors meet in Halifax, focus on Tools for Cities

Kitchener – City of Kitchener Mayor Berry Vrbanovic, along with Big City Mayors from across Canada, met today in Halifax to discuss how to build on recent progress in the federal-municipal partnership and ensure cities have the right tools to tackle future national challenges.

Smart City

Guelph-Wellington named finalist in Canada’s Smart Cities Challenge

One of 10 awarded $250,000 on road to $10 million prize

Guelph – Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced finalists in the national Smart Cities Challenge last Friday, with the Guelph-Wellington County entry named one of 10 in its population category and awarded $250,000 to further develop its bid for a $10 million prize.


Research unlocks hidden secrets beneath AGO Picasso painting

Innovative collaboration and cutting-edge science at centre of major exhibition of Picasso Blue Period works co-organized by the AGO and The Phillips Collection coming in 2020

Today in Houston, Texas, at the American Institute for Conservation conference, Sandra Webster-Cook, Senior Painting Conservator at the Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO), presented new research findings on a masterwork by Pablo Picasso from the AGO collection: La Soupe (1902-3). The findings stem from a three-year technical art history study, co-led by Webster-Cook and the AGO’s Assistant Curator of Modern Art, Kenneth Brummel. Shedding light on decades-old questions, the cross-disciplinary research uncovered significant compositional changes to the painting and deepens knowledge about Picasso’s Blue Period from 1901-1904.


June 8, 2018

WEAR RED for the heart of the women you love!

Heart Disease is the leading cause of premature death among Canadian women, claiming the life of 25,000 each year. That's more than the five most prevalent cancers COMBINED. It could be you, your sister, your mother, your friend. You can help. St. Mary's RedDAY is an opportunity to come together as a community to raise awareness of this serious health risk and how it can be prevented. On Friday June 8th, WEAR RED for the hearts of the women you love! Register your participation.

June 26, 2018

Super Cluster Leadership Gathering

Focus on Regional Collaboration to Drive Global Competitiveness

Hamilton - Excitement is building in the lead up to the inaugural Canada’s Innovation Corridor Summit on June 26 from 8 am to 4 pm at Royal Botanical Gardens in Burlington, Ontario. This marquee leadership event is an initiative of Canada’s Innovation Corridor Business Council, a partnership of leading chambers of commerce and boards of trade located in Southern Ontario. The council represents the collective voice of more than 21,000 businesses, large and small. It is strengthened by a Business Advisory Council of CEOs operating in the corridor.

June 28, 2018

Every Voice Counts - Add your voice for Social Development!

On June 28th, Social Development Centre Waterloo Region will be hosting their 51st Annual General (Social) Meeting at St John the Evangelist Anglican Church in downtown Kitchener. Members have always kept them grounded, and they wish to have your voice this year in setting up our Future Focus!

July 9-20, 2018

Laurier’s BrainWorx summer camp uses fun to teach children about psychology

Crafts, games, sports, outdoor play – and plenty of learning about psychology and the brain. That’s what BrainWorx, a unique summer camp at Wilfrid Laurier University’s Waterloo campus, offers children aged six to nine. BrainWorx is run by Professor Kim Roberts, director of Laurier’s Child Memory Lab and a member of Laurier’s departments of Psychology and Criminology. Campers will have a chance to participate in studies that explore how children learn, remember and differentiate information. In the process, they learn how research works and about the areas being researched – all while having fun.

July 12, 2018

OpenText Announces Inaugural Women in Technology Summit at OpenText Enterprise World 2018 in Toronto

Former U.S. Chief Technology Officer Megan Smith Leads an Inspiring Full-Day Lineup of Prominent Speakers and Panel Discussions

Waterloo – OpenText™, the global leader in Enterprise Information Management (EIM), announced its inaugural OpenText Women in Technology Summit at this year’s Enterprise World conference in Toronto, Ontario. In recognition of International Women’s Day and a global call to Press for Progress, OpenText is releasing its lineup of prominent speakers who will focus their talks on the opportunities and challenges of achieving diversity in the technology sector. OpenText Vice Chair, CEO and CTO Mark J. Barrenechea also released a blog on Press for Progress.

July 17, 2018

Apparel Textile Sourcing Canada Show to Double in Size, Add New Categories in 2018

Popular China Brand Show to make Canadian debut as part of apparel textile event, drawing visitors from wide range of industry categories

Toronto - The Canadian apparel and textile industry got a boost last week with the announcement that the Apparel Textile Sourcing Canada (ATSC) show will double in size for 2018 and expand to include additional categories such as accessories, giftware, home electronics, footwear, luggage and housewares and general merchandise.

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Copyright, 2018