Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences

Rethinking water, the stuff of life, through art at Congress

Stuart Reid, director/curator, Rodman Hall Art Centre, Brock University

As hosts of Congress 2014, all of us at Brock have been busy preparing an engaging and thought-provoking “Congress Plus” program for both our out-of-town and local guests.

As part of this made-at-Brock academic and cultural line up, Rodman Hall Art Centre is pleased to present The Source: Rethinking Water Through Contemporary Art, which will debut during Congress at our University.  

Echoing the theme of this year’s gathering, “Borders Without Boundaries,” water, of course, defines the boundaries between nations and peoples. But, in the greater scheme of things, water also erases and wipes away those differences.

Water is the elemental source of life....

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Towards Journal/Library Partnership in Journal Publishing

Rowland Lorimer, Director, Master of Publishing Program and Canadian Centre for Studies in Publishing, Simon Fraser University

Sunday May 25
14:45 to 16:15
Schmon Tower Boardroom 13th Floor

It would be difficult to find a Canadian researcher in the humanities and social sciences who would not agree to having his or her work openly accessible to the world. The principle, whether you call it freedom of information or open access, is very much in keeping with public education, public funding for research, and the public interest.

The nobility of this principle has led to a worldwide embrace of open access especially in such areas as health research and physics. In pursuit of open access...

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A behind the scenes look at preparing for Congress 2014

Brad Clarke, Project Manager for Congress 2014, Brock University

We’re now just two weeks away from hosting Canada’s largest academic gathering on our University’s campus situated in a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve atop the Niagara Escarpment in Ontario’s Niagara peninsula.

Though we welcome thousands of conference guests to Brock each year, this is the single largest conference our University has hosted since the last time Congress, then The Learneds, came to campus in 1996.

With registration currently at more than 6,700 attendees, our team is busy reconfiguring and transforming our campus to accommodate the burst of creative energy that this event will bring to Niagara.

The transformation is a lot like when a sports organization switches a playing field from a hockey rink to a basketball...

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Une dose de français au Congrès ! Getting your French fix at Congress!

Chaque année, les associations qui participant au Congrès lancent des appels de propositions d’articles illustrant toute perspective disciplinaire ou interdisciplinaire. Tout comme les années précédentes, la Fédération se réjouit de voir une augmentation continue de séances qui sont en français !

In addition to getting your French fix from the list of highlighted events below that are free and open to Congress attendees, there will also be events in Spanish and with ASL interpretation.

Pour une dose de français, d’espagnol et pour connaître les événements où l’interprétation en langage des signes sera disponible lors du Congrès, assurez-vous de profiter des séances énumérées ci-dessous.

Les nouvelles frontières de l'histoire du livre
Samedi 24 mai, 11 h 00 à 12 h 00 l...

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Crossing over silos in genomics research

Karine Morin, Director, National GE3LS Program, Genome Canada

Silos, to many delegates who will attend Congress 2014, refer to insular thinking. To a few, they may evoke Canada’s agricultural tradition. It would seem unlikely that an exploration of the figurative term as well the literal one could happen at once during a session of Congress, but under the theme Borders without Boundaries, such an opportunity may not be so farfetched. In fact, considering how few life scientists will be traveling to Brock University to discuss advances in genomics, it may well seem more implausible that Genome Canada would participate in this year’s event. Yet those curious to learn how genomic research and innovation and the social sciences and humanities intersect should stop by our booth or attend one or both sessions sponsored by Genome Canada.


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The curious story of Research Matters

Patchen Barss, Creative Director and Managing Editor, Research Matters

The first question I really remember being curious about was, “How fast does gravity travel?”

I was a teenager. I stood on a bathroom scale and picked up a heavy book. The dial moved a half a pound. The book was several feet from the scale. Did the scale “know” instantaneously when I picked up the book, or did the information have to travel the length of my body?

Even then, I knew the effect couldn’t be instantaneous – that would mean information was traveling faster than the speed of light, and Albert Einstein had put the kibosh on that possibility way back in the early 20th century.  So did the information about the weight of the book travel at the speed of light? More slowly? How was the information actually transmitted? If I held the object out at arm’s length, did its weight to travel a longer distance through my body, or did it go in a straight line from...

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Focus on copyright issues in academia at Congress 2014

Blayne Haggart, Assistant Professor, Political Science, Brock University

Copyright laws affect almost every aspect of academics’ professional lives, from limiting how much of a book we can put in a course pack to allowing journals to put our (mostly publicly-funded) research behind paywalls. It affects how we teach, research and publish, to say nothing of tuition fees and university budgets.

Although copyright law is complex, the issues are straightforward.

Where should Canada draw the line between protection and limiting copying, and the need to have knowledge communicated as widely as possible? What should Canadian copyright look like, if we want to encourage Canadian scholars to create and communicate in a 21st century digital...

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SSH News: School is out for summer, One month to Congress, Direction and reach of SSH research

School’s out for summer!

Perhaps not Alice Cooper’s famous last words, but as another school year wraps up this month across Canadian campuses, the many challenges facing students today and ways in which these (and future) graduates will need to adapt to the evolving job market are hitting the airwaves. While educators and program directors hope to break down the walls between university and society, students too are being challenged to seize opportunities that give them an edge when moving from school to work. A brief collection of such tales from this week includes:

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Reinventing the language of storytelling at Congress

Kristine Collins, Director, Education and Institutional Markets, National Film Board of Canada

The National Film Board of Canada is proud to be part of CONGRESS 2014 as we celebrate our 75th anniversary. Our films, interactive productions and educational resources connect to the conference themes in so many ways it was challenging to choose just one focus, so we didn’t!

In an exclusive evening event, we will be showcasing Highrise, the Emmy-winning interactive documentary that explores the human condition of vertical living around the globe, created by the NFB’s filmmaker in residence Katerina Cizek. Katerina will be joined by Kristine Collins, Director of Education at the NFB, and Dr. Deborah Cowen, Associate Professor of Geography at the University of...

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Catch the Top 25

People-focused research matters. How you tell its story is just as important.

The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) launched its second-annual Storytellers challenge this past November, asking postsecondary students from across the country to demonstrate—in three minutes or 300 words—how a SSHRC-funded research project at their institution is making a difference in the lives of Canadians.


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