July 2014

Archives

SSH News: Public intellectuals, open access & high APCs, and a hitchhiking robot

Have academics lost the arts of rhetoric and public engagement? Is engaging the public a part of their mandate at all? These questions were implicitly raised in essayist Scott McLemee’s overview of communication professor Anna M. Young’s book Prophets, Gurus, and Pundits: Rhetorical Styles and Public Engagement, which examines different types of public intellectuals. McLemee’s tongue-in-cheek piece, which promises to be part of a series, has not provided answers one way or another, but simply raising these questions is sure to pull in strong opinions from academics across the spectrum.

One such opinion comes from Tim Hitchcock, Professor of Digital History at...

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Congress-Inspired Development

 

Daniel Heidt, Co-Founder, Waterloo Innovations

The 2014 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences was a terrific opportunity for start-up companies, like Waterloo Innovations, to showcase their products. Most academics at Congress were unfamiliar with our product, Confero. For readers who may have missed our booth, Confero uses QR codes to automate the process of organizing hundreds or thousands of research photographs into neat file directories and multi-page pdfs. For $25 it can reduce hours of manually sorting research photographs into minutes of keyboard time.

Congress provided Waterloo Innovations with an unparalleled opportunity to solicit feedback from academics, and we are currently in the process of integrating these comments into Confero 2.0. New...

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SSH News: Financial aid, health care policy, and Canada-Quebec relations

This week, student financial aid made headlines in Canada and the UK, for different reasons. The Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives published a report on July 17th comparing student eligibility for financial aid and the complexity of application processes across provinces. Discussing highlights from the report, with a focus on Ontario, the Toronto Star writes that, in addition to confusing students and their parents, current financial aid systems “do little to guarantee equity among students.”

Financial aid is also causing worries in the UK,...

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The “SSH” is part of “S&T”

Our mission at the Federation is to promote the value of research and learning in the social sciences and humanities (SSH). Often we’re asked, don’t you feel  excluded when people  talk about “science and technology (S&T)” or “science” as a catch-phrase for all research? Of course we’d like a greater focus on the value of the SSH in conversations about research, and that’s something the secretariat works on in our discussions with policy makers. But the basic answer to the question is no, we do not feel excluded.   Today, “S&T” is increasingly defined to include the arts, humanities and social sciences, as well as the natural and health sciences and engineering. We know that SSH research in Canada is world-class, and believe that collaboration between the SSH and organizations in the natural and health sciences and engineering makes all research stronger.  

This type of interdisciplinary collaboration and understanding is something the Federation actively promotes....

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SSH News: Global University Ranking, World Congress of Political Science

This week, a new global ranking was released that measured the quality of 1,000 universities. Thirty-two Canadian universities made the list -- see which ones here!

This weekend marks the start to the 23rd World Congress of Political Science in Montréal (Québec). Political scientists are often seen not merely as analysts of political matters, but as something akin to engineers sculpting the organisation of power. Globalisation has profoundly altered the work of political scientists, intensifying communication and exchange on issues pertaining to the way in which communities, societies, nations...

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SSH News: Congress 2014 highlights, Skills for the Future, Humanités numériques 2015

This week, the Federation released a short publication featuring the many highlights from this year’s Congress at Brock University. Be sure to check it out online in either English or French!

Also this week, Skills for the Future was hosted by provincial and territorial education and labour market ministers in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island. This joint symposium aimed at bringing together government, business, labour, academic leaders, and student groups to address the...

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Highlights from Congress 2014

The Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences is proud to have brought you our 83rd Congress, the largest multidisciplinary academic gathering in Canada—indeed, one of the largest such gatherings in the world. Congress 2014 will be remembered for its interdisciplinarity, for the 75 scholarly association meetings and the 5,000+ papers presented. It took place in an outstanding setting at the beautiful Brock University campus in St. Catharines, Ontario in the heart of the Niagara region.

Creating meaningful connections between researchers and the broader community is a key goal for Congress organizers, both at the Federation and at the host university. Through proactive outreach to media, government and other...

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SSH News: Reported earnings by degree, SSH research matters, Ideas can… bubbles, Digital Humanities 2014 conference

Two contradicting articles this week report on the earnings of humanities and social sciences graduates. On one hand, the Globe and Mail reports positively that BA grads have better pay, more career options while Maclean’s magazine suggests that a graduate survey shows stark differences in salaries where humanities graduates earn the least, and even hints at the “underemployment” among these graduates.

Notwithstanding, in a newly-published piece this week in ...

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Ideas can... endure!

Each year, Congress is an opportunity to create meaningful connections between researchers and the broader community. The Federation’s tagline “Ideas can...” invites us to make these connections by sharing, forming and transforming our ideas. Once written down, ideas can grow into something even greater, beyond their singular inception.

So the Federation started thinking, why don’t we (the greater “We”) write our ideas down, and see what happens!

At the Federation’s booth at the 2014 Congress Expo, we asked our visitors to consider what ideas mean to them, what ideas can achieve and what ideas can… do.

As visitors dropped in to our booth,...

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