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____ Monday, November 23, 2015 ____

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Really Old Art

Genevieve von Petzinger: Why are these 32 symbols found in ancient caves all over Europe?

Paleoanthropologist and rock art researcher Genevieve von Petzinger studies the geometric signs found in early European Ice Age rock art sites. Written language, the hallmark of human civilization, didn't just suddenly appear one day. Thousands of years before the first fully developed writing systems, our ancestors scrawled geometric signs across the walls of the caves they sheltered in. Paleoanthropologist, rock art researcher and TED Senior Fellow Genevieve von Petzinger has studied and codified these ancient markings in caves across Europe. The uniformity of her findings suggest that graphic communication, and the ability to preserve and transmit messages beyond a single moment in time, may be much older than we think.

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Nominations

The Greater Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce Announces 2016 Business Excellence Awards Nominees

Kitchener – The Greater Kitchener Waterloo Chamber of Commerce announced the Nominees for the 2016 Business Excellence Awards in the following categories:

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Cost of Goods

Consumer Price Index for October 2015

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 1.0% in the 12 months to October, matching the increase in September. Lower energy prices continued to moderate the year-over-year rise in the CPI, led by the gasoline index, which was down 17.1% in the 12 months to October.

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Interviews

What Questions Should You Ask Your Next Nonprofit Leader?

Seek Answers That Reveal Their Purpose & Values

Prepping for a job interview can be nerve-racking – not just if you’re an interviewee, but also if you’re the interviewer, says Brian Mohr. “Most of us feel the stress associated with being interviewed for a job, but interviewers face pressure, too,” says Mohr, co-founder and managing partner for Y Scouts, a purpose-based leadership search firm for nonprofits, social enterprises, and other mission-driven companies.

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Study

A whiff from blue-green algae likely responsible for Earth’s oxygen

Waterloo - Earth's oxygen-rich atmosphere emerged in whiffs from a kind of blue-green algae in shallow oceans around 2.5 billion years ago, according to new research from Canadian and US scientists. These whiffs of oxygen likely happened in the following 100 million years, changing the levels of oxygen in Earth’s atmosphere until enough accumulated to create a permanently oxygenated atmosphere around 2.4 billion years ago – a transition widely known as the Great Oxidation Event.

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Culture inclusion

University of Waterloo wins national award for inclusivity program

Waterloo - A program at the University of Waterloo that promotes a culture of inclusion has received a national award. The Institute of Performance and Learning awarded the Silver Award for Training Excellence to the Office of Organizational & Human Development for the Principles of Inclusivity program, a seven-part certificate program that develops and reinforces inclusive behaviours and skills. Organizational & Human Development is Waterloo’s non-academic support unit dedicated to personal and professional learning and development.

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Skill Trades

Ontario Accepts Recommendations to Strengthen the Ontario College of Trades

Queens Park - Ontario is strengthening the industry-driven governing body responsible for promoting and modernizing skilled trades in the province. The province, in partnership with the Ontario College of Trades, has accepted the recommendations made by former Secretary of Cabinet Tony Dean, in his report, Supporting a Strong and Sustainable Ontario College of Trades. Ontario will bring forward proposed legislative changes in the spring legislative session and will work closely with the College of Trades to implement Mr. Dean’s recommendations.

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Entrepreneurship

Young Entrepreneurs Kick-Starter Pitch

Ontario Invites High School Students to ‘Make Your Pitch’

Queens Park - Ontario is fostering entrepreneurship among high school students by supporting the 4th annual ‘Young Entrepreneurs, Make Your Pitch’ competition. The competition – which is a partnership between the province and Ontario Centres of Excellence - challenges high school students to pitch their business ideas in a two-minute video that are evaluated by judges from the business community. The public can also vote for the best pitch online.

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Employment Agencies

Province Helping Precarious & Foreign Workers Collect Unpaid Wages

Additional Protections Extended to Precarious and Foreign Workers

Queens Park - New changes to Ontario’s employment laws come into effect today to better protect precarious and foreign workers. Starting last Friday November 20, 2015, the Employment Standards Act, 2000 will be amended to allow individuals who are hired through a temporary help agency to recover unpaid wages from both the agency and the agency’s client-business, where the agency has not paid the wages.

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401 Start Up

A mayoral meeting of the minds on the Toronto-Waterloo Region corridor

by Pat Lynch, Communitech News

Photo: Toronto Mayor John Tory (left) discusses the Toronto-Waterloo Region corridor with Kitchener Mayor Berry Vrbanovic at Series 401.

Toronto - The third annual Series 401 startup showcase kicked off Wednesday morning with some lively scene-setting from the mayors of two cities with skin in the game. As the founders of 13 startups nervously filed into Ryerson University’s Sears Atrium for the Communitech/DMZ-sponsored pitch session, Toronto Mayor John Tory and Kitchener Mayor Berry Vrbanovic sat down for a cordial chat about the potential for growth in the Toronto-Waterloo Region corridor.

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House Building

Investment in new housing construction for September 2015

Construction spending rose in five provinces, led by Ontario, followed by British Columbia and Quebec.

Ottawa - Spending on new housing construction rose 4.8% year over year to $4.8 billion in September, following a 2.9% gain in August (revised data).

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Trade

Retail trade for September 2015

Following four months of gains, retail sales fell 0.5% in September to $43.3 billion. Sales were down in 8 of 11 subsectors, representing 60% of retail trade. After removing the effects of price changes, particularly lower gasoline prices, retail sales in volume terms edged up 0.1%.

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Pandemics

Independent Panel of Global Experts Calls for Critical Reforms to Prevent Future Pandemics

Panel convened by Harvard Global Health Institute and London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine issues hard-hitting analysis of the global response to Ebola

London, UK - An independent group of 20 experts from around the globe, convened by the Harvard Global Health Institute (HGHI) and the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine, has issued a hard-hitting analysis of the global response to the 2014-15 Ebola outbreak in West Africa, published in The Lancet.

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Environmental Health

New Conestoga degree program prepares students for Public Health careers

Kitchener - A new career-focused degree program to be launched at Conestoga’s Doon campus in September 2016 will provide graduates with the skills and knowledge required to address the challenges of environmental health practice for the 21st century.

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Leadership

4 Types Of Leaders And How They Affect Bottom-Line Success

There Is More Diversity Than You Might Expect, Business Expert Says

It’s one of the oldest maxims in recorded human history: “know thyself.” As simple as the instruction may seem, the state of knowing oneself is deceptively complex, as volumes of philosophy and social science have explored throughout the centuries and recent decades. In business it is especially important since, typically, many other people are involved.

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Culture

Manulife named one of Canada's 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures

Toronto - Waterstone Human Capital has named Manulife one of Canada's 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures of 2015. Manulife was named in the Enterprise category.

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Meetings

5 Strategies For Getting The Most Out Of Meetings

Companies Can Waste Less Time And Be More Efficient With A Few Simple Steps

Many employees probably groan and grumble when they see that the boss has scheduled yet another meeting. Cameron Herold, a business development expert and author of “Double Double: How to Double Your Revenue and Profit in 3 Years or Less", insists it doesn’t need to be that way. “Meetings aren’t terrible,” Herold says. “We’re just terrible at running meetings.”

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Climate Change

UN Climate Deal Will Create Jobs and Growth: Global CEOs Pledge Support for Governments

Heads of 78 major businesses promise support and urge world leaders to reach an “ambitious” global climate deal; The CEOs represent $2.13 trillion in revenue – equivalent to India’s GDP, say that an economically sustainable shift to a low-carbon future will create “jobs and growth” across the world

Geneva, Switzerland – The heads of major multinationals from Brazil, China, Europe, India and the United States are urging world leaders to “reach an ambitious climate deal” that they argue will “generate jobs and growth” across the world.

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