Income gap study shows Canadians troubled by ‘less fair’ society

A majority of Canadians think the income gap has grown in the last five years and that the country has become a “less fair” society, a new national survey finds. The survey, conducted for the Toronto Star by York University’s Institute for Social Research, found that 78 per cent of Canadians believe the income gap has grown, 70 per cent think it has made Canada less fair, 55 per cent are troubled about their financial security, while 67 per cent are worried about their children’s financial future, reported the Toronto Star and others Feb. 6. Read full story.

Why an ‘MBA oath’ is bound to fail
“Would you swear an oath? This is the question I ask my MBA students when we discuss the case of the oldest commercial corporation in North America,” wrote Schulich School of Business Professor Matthias Kipping in The Globe and Mail Feb. 5. “During its fur trading days, the Hudson’s Bay Co. made some of its managers swear an oath not to engage in private trade or use company resources for their own personal benefit. Since many students are stunned by the question, I make the dilemma more relevant: ‘Swear an oath not to cheat in exams or deposit $1,000, which you would forfeit if found cheating?’ Nearly all students would prefer the oath, and the explanation is similarly consistent: ‘It’s cheaper.’ This suggests that an oath would do little to prevent cheating, and the idea that we can prevent managerial fraud and even another financial crisis by making MBA students swear an oath to act ethically once they become managers is doomed to fail.” Read full story.

Sochi 2014: AT&T’s criticism of anti-gay laws a political statement and smart marketing
Days before the opening of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Russia, telecommunications giant and US Olympic Committee sponsor AT&T made plain its disagreement with that country’s laws against homosexuality. . . . Schulich School of Business Professor Alan Middleton points out that because AT&T sponsors the US committee and not the Olympic Games itself, it has more leeway to criticize Russia’s laws than would a Games sponsor like Coke or Samsung. And while other companies may follow AT&T’s lead, they won’t have the impact that comes with being the first Olympic-linked corporation to speak out against Russia’s discriminatory laws. “Give AT&T a 10 out of 10 for guts for speaking up,” said Middleton in the Toronto Star Feb. 5. “[Other sponsors] may not do it this time because it’s so late, but it could have an impact in the future.” Read full story.

Slyce turns to MaRS & Innovation York for technology acquisition
After picking up technology and new team members by acquiring in November, image recognition and eCommerce company Slyce has again added to its team by acquiring the technology and talent of former York University PhD student Ehsan Fazl-Ersi, who will also join Slyce as chief science officer. Fazl-Ersi’s image recognition technology was developed at York University and the commercialization of the technology was undertaken at MaRS Innovation, reported Dx3 Digest and others Feb. 4. Read full story.

Caledon couple break down transgender stereotypes
Sandi and Melody Wiseheart have decided to tell their story, reported the Caledon Enterprise Feb. 5. Their hand slightly forced by a letter sent to the Enterprise asking why Melody, a transgendered person, would be using the woman’s washroom at the Caledon Centre for Recreation and Wellness. The Wisehearts are in love. This year, celebrating 10 years of marriage. . . . Conversation comes easy. They are fun. They are likeable. They are everyday. Except that Melody was born a biological male. . . . In 2008, they moved to Canada, and in 2010, the couple settled permanently into a home in downtown Bolton. Melody found work in Toronto, and is now a tenured professor of cognitive developmental psychology at York University. Read full story.

Massive worldwide response to Inspiration Mars student design contest
The Mars Society’s Inspiration Mars International Student Design Competition has drawn a massive worldwide response, reported AmericaSpace Feb. 6. As of the Jan. 31 deadline, letters of intent to compete have been received from 38 teams representing 56 universities in 15 countries, including Canada’s York University. Read full story.