Research, Profs Make Headlines

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Research by Prof. Ross McKitrick, Economics, is making headlines this week. McKitrick was involved in a new report issued by the Fraser Institute Oct. 30 that suggests the province’s rising energy prices are the result of investments into wind and solar generation. Articles appeared in the Ottawa CitizenNational Post, and on  CTV News and Canoe online.

Prof. Ruth Neustifter, Family Relations & Applied Nutrition, was interviewed for a Canadian Press story relating to fired CBC radio host Jian Ghomeshi. In the story, Neustifter discussed what BDSM – bondage, dominance, sadism and masochism – involves and what draws adherents to this kind of sex. She said BDSM should involve ongoing consent, and it is possible for a partner to go too far. Articles appeared in Metro News and on Global News.

Profs. Amar Mohanty and Manjusri Misra, of U of G’s Bioproducts Discovery and Development Centre (BDDC), wrote a Globe and Mail column on Oct. 29 discussing why the appeal of bio-based parts for vehicles is increasing. They said there are three key factors: stringent fuel economy and emissions regulations; sustainability challenges; and market access. Mohanty and Misra also discussed how products developed by the BDDC are being commercialized in a short period of time.

Prof. Sylvain Charlebois, Marketing and Consumer Studies, was interviewed by the Toronto Star on Oct. 29 for a story looking at pumpkin spice products in Canada. Charlebois discussed why there are a greater variety of such products in the U.S. than in Canada. He noted that pumpkin spice caters to a niche market, and seasonality, with Canadian Thanksgiving earlier in the fall than American Thanksgiving, also plays a role.

Prof. Wayne Caldwell, Environmental Design and Rural Development, was interviewed by the Globe and Mail on Oct. 29 for a story looking at balancing land practices to ensure food security. Caldwell is part of a team of researchers from Canadian universities attempting to determine best practices for protecting farmland. He said it is critical to protect  agricultural land in light of projections that show productivity on farms in southern Canada could increase due to climate change.

Professor emeritus Len Ritter, Environmental Sciences, was interviewed on CBC Radio’s The 180 on Oct. 28 for a story examining the safety of pesticides on foods. Ritter said pesticides undergo rigorous testing before making it to market, and regulatory agencies review results and ensure testing adheres to strict protocols. He said there’s no scientific evidence to back up the claim organic produce is safer or more nutritious.

Prof. Andrea Paras, Political Science, was interviewed for an article on Research Matters on Oct. 27. Paras discussed her research on how the religious values of different humanitarian organizations affect their practices, and how Christians in Canadian faith-based organizations distinguish themselves between missionary and development work. She said faith-based organizations often need to prove they are equitable, non-discriminatory, and that they engage multiple-faith audiences in their work.