The next Scholars Hub lecture explores how to successfully transition to a low-carbon economy

The next lecture in the Scholars Hub Speaker Series will consider how citizens and communities participate in energy initiatives and why this participation is critical to the successful transition to a low-carbon economy.

On April 30, Christina Hoicka, assistant professor, Faculty of Environmental Studies, will present “Participation in the Low-Carbon Economy.”

In her Scholars Hub presentation, Hoicka will explore how meaningful participation in renewable and low-carbon energy initiatives is linked with enhanced citizen support and how difficulty securing such support is seen as a major barrier for such initiatives.

Christina E. Hoicka
Christina E. Hoicka

She will discuss how community energy, which is characterized by high levels of participation, is also associated with wide-ranging benefits for communities such as new social mechanisms for learning, economic development and engagement of local populations in energy policy implementation. Additionally, she will discuss how emerging distributive and demand-side innovations (such as information, automation, microgrids, storage, and electric vehicles) are vital to the successful transition towards renewable energy, and these innovations depend on the participation and engagement of energy users. Hoicka will consider the significant research opportunities for empirical and systematic investigations related to how citizens and communities participate.

The Scholars Hub Speaker Series, which kicked off Jan. 29, also marks the 50th anniversary of FES. The event series, titled “Environmental Changes,” is a partnership between Vaughan Public Libraries and York University’s Division of Advancement. It features talks and expertise from York faculty.

All events will take place at the Civic Centre Resource Library located at 2191 Major Mackenzie Dr. W. from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Refreshments will be provided.

The lineup continues with:

• May 28 – Jose Etcheverry (associate professor, Faculty of Environmental Studies) presenting “Experimental Learning for Sustainability: Canada, Algeria and Chile”
This talk will summarize Etcheverry’s team’s experience building solar facilities for experiential learning in Canada, Algeria and Chile.

• June 25 – Sheila Colla (assistant professor, Faculty of Environmental Studies) presenting “What’s the Buzz? Working Towards Pollinators Conservation in Canada”
Colla has been researching the declines of native pollinators for more than a decade. She will describe the various types of pollinators we have, what we know about their conservation status and threats. She will also outline what we can all do to help protect wild pollinator populations.

The partnership is part of York University’s goals of community engagement and reputation building, with a unique collaboration that invites alumni, students, their families and the public to engage in meaningful talks and discussions on the fascination of our environment.

Space for each talk is limited. For more information, or to register, visit