Joanne Weber named first-ever research chair in deaf education

The only professor in academia working on deaf education

Joanne Weber named first-ever research chair in deaf educationThere is a fierce debate raging in the deaf community. Many audiologists believe sign language is obsolete, recommending instead that deaf children rely exclusively on technology such as cochlear implants and hearing aids. Sign language, they contend, interferes with learning to speak. Joanne Weber argues the whole dispute is absurd and unnecessary. The first Canada Research Chair in…

Play shines a spotlight on a civil rights icon

Gordon Hirabayashi took a principled stand against the internment of Japanese Americans

Play shines a spotlight on a civil rights iconWhen Japanese Americans were evacuated from the West Coast and sent to internment camps during the Second World War, Gordon Hirabayashi refused to comply. Acting on the courage of moral conviction, the Quaker pacifist instead turned himself in to the FBI, prepared to challenge the unjust executive order and take the case as far as…

Student aspires to take principles of ethical leadership back to Afghanistan

After escaping from Afghanistan, Aftikhar Mominzada feels an obligation to create opportunities for others

Student aspires to take principles of ethical leadership back to AfghanistanIt was the worst case of bad timing. Aftikhar Mominzada was elated after graduating from the Aga Khan Academy in Hyderabad, India, in the spring of 2021. When he started the academy’s international baccalaureate program in middle school, it was the opportunity of a lifetime, freeing him from the parochial religious education he was likely to receive…

The benefits of mediation over offence-based legal judgments

Studying the history of law in Iran might help point the way to improving legal systems in the West

The benefits of mediation over offence-based legal judgmentsYou might be tempted to think Jairan Gahan’s interest in the legal history of sex in Iran is purely academic. She is most fascinated by the early 20th century, following Iran’s Constitutional Revolution of 1906, when the country was drafting its criminal code. How could that possibly be relevant to life in the modern state, especially…

Hydrogen could be the next big thing in Alberta energy

The province has the resources, infrastructure and workforce to produce the clean energy source

Hydrogen could be the next big thing in Alberta energyOn the path to a decarbonized future, Alberta could become a global leader in the export of hydrogen. Amit Kumar, who advised the provincial government in developing its Hydrogen Roadmap, says the province is already well ahead of the production game, having developed large-scale hydrogen infrastructure and expertise for the oil sands industry. Alberta is, in…

Hydrogen research heats up

New process could lead to low emissions and high-value byproducts

Hydrogen research heats upA University of Alberta research team is working with a Calgary energy company to extract hydrogen and high-demand carbon products from natural gas, while emitting less carbon dioxide in the process. Innova Hydrogen and researchers in the Faculty of Engineering received $1.2 million from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council and the Mitacs Accelerate Grants Program to develop the technology. Existing…

How family businesses can weather generational shifts

The largest wealth transfer in history looms, and family-run businesses need to be ready

How family businesses can weather generational shiftsStories about bitter feuds in family businesses are everywhere these days. From HBO’s Succession and The Righteous Gemstones to the recent feature film House of Gucci to the true story of infighting at Rogers Communications, the popular imagination can’t seem to get enough of sibling rivalry and other forms of strife in business families. Our fascination with such conflict is hardly…

Lasers could revolutionize medicine, future energy needs

Evidence suggests laser-based fusion energy could actually be a viable

Lasers could revolutionize medicine, future energy needsA beam of protons painlessly penetrates human tissue until it terminates inside a cancer tumour, where each particle deposits a micro-explosion of radiation energy. The beam is precisely calibrated, targeting only the tumour and leaving surrounding tissue unharmed. Called “proton therapy,” this revolutionary medical treatment is just one application of a relatively new technology using…

How to help cities improve planning for natural disasters

Many municipalities don’t have evacuation plans in place

How to help cities improve planning for natural disastersAs natural disasters like fire, extreme heatwaves and flooding are on the rise globally due to a changing climate, cities are looking at how they can be better prepared. According to Stephen Wong, professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of Alberta, many communities lack clear evacuation plans, and communication to residents is inconsistent across jurisdictions.…

Oldest human DNA ever found in Africa uncovered.

Archeological detective work reveals a rare find

Oldest human DNA ever found in Africa uncovered.A University of Alberta anthropologist has uncovered the oldest human DNA yet found in Africa, shedding new light on a period of ancient human history about which little is known. Banting post-doctoral fellow and bioarcheologist Elizabeth Sawchuk found skeletal remains of a middle-aged woman on her first dig in Africa 12 years ago as a…

Adapting to new working conditions better than quitting

What to do when your job shifts under your feet

Adapting to new working conditions better than quittingOver the past two years, the nature of work for some has changed dramatically, whether it’s working remotely, relying more heavily on digital tools or adapting to restructuring and shifts in the economy. Many of us have been reflecting on whether our jobs are giving us what we want out of life. Canada may not…

How urban design helps create a more vibrant city

Diversity and culture help attract and retain the creative talent that cities thrive on

How urban design helps create a more vibrant cityWhen Richard Florida published The Rise of the Creative Class in 2002, it came as news to many that the greater the population of creative types – artists, musicians, designers and technology workers – in a given city, the stronger its economy and quality of life. Attracting and retaining creative talent was partly a question of…

U of A Institute a source of hope, truth amid Ukraine invasion

Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies a cultural and intellectual beacon for Canadian Ukrainians

U of A Institute a source of hope, truth amid Ukraine invasionDuring her interview with Folio, Natalia Khanenko-Friesen is simultaneously texting her father in Kyiv – urging him to find a landline before cellular networks are knocked out – while providing moral support to a colleague fleeing shelling in the city with a child. As the director of the University of Alberta’s Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies, Khanenko-Friesen is…

People from under-represented communities take centre stage

Facilitators say the experience has given them a new perspective on telling stories through drama

People from under-represented communities take centre stageIn an all-too-familiar tense scene, a fraudulent immigration officer demands money from a Filipino immigrant intent on starting a new life in Canada. Empowered by the audience, the immigrant pushes back, refusing to comply. It’s a scene that hits home with everyone in the room – all of them migrant workers in Edmonton turning to…

Black History Month gains meaning when black communities reclaim it

The month must move beyond symbolic gesture to include action, says U of A scholar

Black History Month gains meaning when black communities reclaim itAs a graduate student at Western University more than 20 years ago, Michael A. Bucknor was asked for his thoughts on Black History Month by a student journalist. His response was deliberately equivocal: “I am more than black and less than black.” The resulting profile in Western’s Gazette stirred controversy, with some wondering if Bucknor was claiming…
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