Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Hi everyone and welcome to week 10, when everyone’s saying “There are only two weeks left! … Wait! There are only two weeks left?”

More great wildlife photographed by Vicki Brett. Thank you Vicki, for brightening our day with these.

Maybe you remember that several of our MA students, Teresa Branch, Sandie DeVries, Marian Davies, and Jamie Sewell presented a poster at the 2013 Science and Society Conference in Ottawa, on “Scientific information, misinformation and disinformation: The perils of open access and trust”? Well guess what: their poster won second prize! Congratulations all!

Tim Kenyon gave a paper, “Research impact measures for the humanities, social sciences and creative arts,” at the World Social Sciences Forum in Montreal on Thanksgiving weekend.

One of our senior graduate students, Rosalind Abdool, co-presented with Kevin Rodrigues, clinical ethicist at Providence Health Care, at Ethics Grand Rounds at St. Michael’s Hospital last week. The topic was on the ethical implications of the Rasouli case, for which the Supreme Court of Canada made a ruling in late October. The presentation was attended by numerous hospital staff, physicians, patients and community members interested in the impact of the case on questions such a informed consent, the definition of treament and futility, the decision-making autonomy of physicians and patients, as well as the “elephant in the room” of resource allocation. It was a fantastic discussion and they will be presenting at Providence Health Care, St. Joseph’s Health Centre Toronto and Hamilton later this month.

Rosalind also taught a class for the Masters of Health Science program through the Joint Centre for Bioethics – University of Toronto. The subject was on social contract theory and justice for healthcare providers. Rosalind remarks: “Teaching this class was a wonderful opportunity to discuss political philosophy and ethical theory with incredibly engaging students. It was fun being able to take interesting theories, such as utilitarianism, Kantianism, socialism and so forth and apply them to everyday clinical experiences, including mandatory flu shots, jumping wait lists, various forms of difficult behaviours from incapable patients and health equity.”

Rosalind adds, “The graduate students decided to take some time off on Saturday and go rock climbing! For many of us, it was our first time bouldering and rock climbing, but it was lots of fun and a great way to spend time together outside of the department!”

IMG_3552

And finally, maybe you remember that Chris Eliasmith is going to be hosting a TV show on the Discovery channel, an episode of Stephen Hawking’s Brave New World? Well that will be showing this Friday, on Discovery World, channel 245 on Rogers. Here are some pictures!

Don’t forget, as always, you can see more news and check out upcoming events at our Department website.

Thanks for reading and stay warm.

— Patricia Marino

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