York University class looks at Toronto graffiti in midst of crackdown

York University class looks at Toronto graffiti in midst of crackdown
A new class at York University is taking a closer look at the precarious position of “legal graffiti” in Toronto while studying the city through hip-hop culture. “Given that hip hop is an urban culture, now a global urban culture, I thought it would be interesting for students to explore Canadian cities and international cities through the lens of hip hop,” York Professor Simon Black said in Metro Jan. 2. Read full story.

Ancient systems in the brain drive human cravings
At York University, Professor Caroline Davis is studying the biological basis of food addiction. She says the brain’s reward system can be particularly sensitive to highly processed food with combinations of salt, sugar, fat and flavours found nowhere in nature. “Because they’re so palatable, we tend to eat a lot of them and they give us a greater dopamine boost than broccoli does,” said Davis in CBC News Jan. 2. “The things loaded with sugar, loaded with fat, salt, in combination they’re very, very hard to resist and there’s evidence that if you eat enough of these foods, in some vulnerable people, they display behaviour that is very similar to the behaviour we see in other addicts.” Read full story.

Life in the place that never thaws: French Family trades brie and baguettes for a cozy nook in the Canadian Arctic
French geophysicist Eric Brossier, who is currently gathering data on polar ice thickness and glacier patterns for Christian Haas, a professor at York University, does not remember a singular, crystallizing moment, when he consciously resolved to lead an unconventional life, reported the National Post Jan. 4. To do things differently than most and to plant himself, and his loving wife, France, and their two young daughters, in the middle of a Canadian nowhere aboard a 15-m yacht. Read full story.

Guidelines need work
Last August, and following two years of private consultations, the Office of the Superintendent of Financial Institutions (OSFI) published for public comment draft revisions to its corporate-governance guideline for federally regulated financial institutions. The public-comment period was five weeks and OSFI indicated its intention to finalize revisions by year-end. Neither the consultations nor the research on which the draft revisions are based, nor the comments received, have been posted by OFSI. This lack of transparency is extraordinary for a public agency, co-wrote Edward Waitzer, director of York University’s Hennick Centre for Business and Law, in the Financial Post Jan. 2. Read full story.

CPCs have proven their worth
It’s a long way to go, but that hasn’t stopped Canadian academics from making the journey across the Pacific Ocean to present at the 25th Australasian Finance and Banking Conference, where Gordon Roberts from York’s Schulich School of Business delivered a paper on deposit insurance and wholesale funding by the banks, reported the Financial Post Dec. 17. Read full story.

Ottawa police tab to collect race-based data growing
Ottawa police will spend $90,000 for data research expertise to help with its controversial race-based data collection set to launch next year, reported the Ottawa Sun and others Dec. 17….A York University research team is the expertise hired to help collect and analyze the racial data. Read full story.

Carney faces grilling by UK parliamentary panel
The Bank of Canada’s vetting process for conflict of interest is being called “inadequate” by at least one corporate governance expert. Richard Leblanc, a law and ethics professor at York University, wonders why a subordinate is in charge overseeing whether his boss – the Bank’s governor – overstepped conflict of interest rules, reported Sun News Dec. 18. Read full story.

Generation Y and Canada immigration: Three profiles of young Canadians
Research shows that hard work and drive to succeed are common among many first-generation Canadians, and that work ethic continues with second-generation Canadians, who generally outpace their peers on measures of academic achievement, professional and managerial employment, and economic standing….Luin Goldring, a sociology professor at York University, agrees that the success of second-generation Canadians is the result of a particular kind of upbringing. “If you can’t be the professional, try to make sure your kids are,” she said in Huffington Post Canada Dec. 19. Read full story.

Kelly McParland: Kyoto failure could threaten global summit posturing
The Conservative government was predictably abused when Environment Minister Peter Kent confirmed last week that Canada will formally withdraw from the Kyoto Accord….The decision “marks the country’s lowest point in the 40-year history of modern global environmental diplomacy,” declared York University Professor Mark Winfield in the National Post Dec. 18. Read full story.