World has changed for Detroit’s Big 3 and their unions

Either the CAW [Canadian Auto Workers] will make the concessions to allow Canadian plants to become cost competitive with their US counterparts or, if they fail to do so, there will be a further attrition of vehicle assembly in Canada, predicted Bernard Wolf, professor of economics and international business, Schulich School of Business, York University, in an opinion piece published in The Globe and Mail Sept. 17. 

Abuse of migrant workers ‘endemic’ in Canada, new study says
While stories of migrant worker abuse are not new, the study by Osgoode Hall Law School Professor Fay Faraday examined the legislative and regulatory practices to get to the root causes of the issues faced by migrant workers, reported the Toronto Star and The Huffington Post Sept. 17. “This is the road map for understanding how these workers’ insecurity is built by law. The law doesn’t only create vulnerability but it fails to address exploitation and allows it to flourish,” said Faraday, who specializes in constitutional law, human rights and labour issues. 

Canada bows to US in pulling diplomats from Iran
The decision last week by the Harper government to break diplomatic ties with Iran was a knee-jerk, hypocritical decision that looks like a sop to “Israel-first, Canada-later” voters in swing ridings, wrote Gus Van Harten, a professor at York’s Osgoode Hall Law School, in an opinion piece published Sept. 17 in the Winnipeg Free Press.

Should I do an MBA? In the face of challenges, Canada’s business schools adapt
Some top companies are increasingly bypassing business schools as they hunt for the best and brightest, reported Sept. 14. Some MBA programs have sought to level the playing field by offering specialized programs. York University’s Schulich School of Business, for example, now offers 19 different specializations, ranging from arts and media administration to health industry management. A new specialization in global mining management was added just this year.

Savings Game: Seven questions to answer for a secure retirement
Moshe Milevsky [a professor at York’s Schulich School of Business] has many well-written financial planning books to his credit, wrote the Tribune Media Services in a column published in the Kansas City Star and Akron Beacon Journal Sept. 14. In his latest book, The 7 Most Important Equations for Your Retirement (Wiley, 2012), he explains the classic calculations of retirement analysis within the context of the history of mathematics and the physical sciences. The history is fun stuff, but Milevsky is also an excellent guide to the fundamental concepts and questions that lay at the heart of financial planning. 

A Guaranteed Return On an Annuity Has Limits After All
Annuities are sold with the word “guaranteed” sprinkled through the marketing material. But it turns out that the definition of guaranteed may vary, reported The New York Times Sept. 15. Insurers made promises before the financial crisis that they now cannot keep. So what can people do about the sudden change? Moshe Milevsky, a professor of finance at York’s Schulich School of Business, said that while these good deals were going away, he was more worried that people would rush to put as much money as they could into an annuity with a high guarantee and come to regret it.

Toronto on mission to build ties with Chicago; ‘Sister’ Cities
A blue ribbon Toronto delegation heads to Chicago next week with Mayor Rob Ford as he tries to build economic ties between the two “sister” cities, reported the National Post Sept. 15. The two “sister” cities have already forged strong cultural, academic and economic ties. Kraft and Wrigley have their head offices in Chicago, and major manufacturing in Toronto, for example. Deco Labels and Tags, the Ford family company, has a division in Chicago. York University and Northwestern University have a joint MBA.

James Laxer and the War of 1812
Among the plethora of books to appear this year to mark the 200th anniversary of the start of the War of 1812, James Laxer‘s Tecumseh and Brock: The War of 1812 stands out for several reasons, wrote The Kingston Whig-Standard Sept. 15. First, it is written by a Canadian. Second, it does not focus on the machinations of the war’s two principal belligerents. And third, it was not written by a professional historian, but by a professor of political science from York University in Toronto known for his highly radical political stance.

Restricted Entry Redux
When news spread last week about a Colorado State University job ad for an assistant professor of English that specifically asked for candidates who earned their Ph.D.s in 2010 or after, many academics felt that this was discrimination against those who have been on the market for several years, reported Inside Higher Ed Sept. 17. “I don’t enjoy this feeling that I’m like a fruit that will only be ripe for about three years, before being dropped into the cider bucket. #PhD,” said a Twitter post from Melonie Fullick, a PhD candidate working on research in postsecondary education, policy and governance at Canada’s York University. 

Strategy Lab: Stock market ideas, investing insights (and competition)
Four of Canada’s brightest investors are poised to match wits in a battle for portfolio supremacy, wrote The Globe and Mail Sept. 17. The Globe and Mail Strategy Lab pits several classic ways of evaluating stocks against one another. Whether you’re a dividend collector, a value hunter, a growth junkie or an indexing enthusiast, one of our strategists should fit your own investing philosophy. Norm Rothery, our value investor, is the founder of He obtained a PhD in atomic physics from York University before following his passion for investing.