York’s deal with international law think tank cancelled over lack of faculty support

York University has dropped plans for a joint international law program with Jim Balsillie’s think tank, having failed to convince its law professors that academic freedom would be guaranteed, reported the Toronto Star April 2. York officials announced the $30-million deal was off late Monday, just hours after the Faculty Council of Osgoode Hall Law School voted 34 to 7 against working with Balsillie’s Centre for International Governance Innovation (CIGI) to create 10 research chairs in international law and funding for 20 PhD students. Although the program did not require the approval of York’s blue-chip law school to proceed, York officials said that without Osgoode’s blessing it would make little sense to proceed. “We’re certainly disappointed; we had made major changes to safeguard academic freedom and integrity, but it doesn’t make sense to run an international law program without the participation of one of the leading law schools in the country,” York Vice-President Patrick Monahan told the Star. Read full story.

Making Earth Hour shine brighter
“Canadian baby boomers tend to be a weak source of support for environmental issues,” wrote Mark Winfield, professor in York’s Faculty of Environmental Studies, in a letter to the Toronto Star April 3. “The base of concern is now very much the under-35 demographic. This actually bodes well for the environment in the long term as a public policy issue. However, the general disengagement by younger demographics from the political process remains a serious challenge.” Read full story.

Screen Industries Research and Training Centre announces high frame rate moviemaking facility
One of the next big things coming to a theatre near you will be movies shot and projected at rates much faster than they currently run – a process designed to dramatically improve the overall audience experience, particularly with 3D movies, reported VillageGamer.net. The HFR initiative involves key creative and technical partners from all areas of moviemaking, including researchers from York University’s 3D FLIC film consortium. Read full story.