Welcome to the April 2020 issue of ‘Brainstorm’

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“Brainstorm,” a special edition of YFile publishing on the first Friday of every month, showcases research and innovation at York University. It offers compelling and accessible feature-length stories about the world-leading and policy-relevant work of York’s academics and researchers across all disciplines and Faculties and encompasses both pure and applied research.

New book paints vivid picture of mariners’ world in the Age of Explorationbonus video
Historian Margaret Schotte takes readers back nearly 500 years to discover the multitude of skills that navigators acquired in the immense drive for commercial and naval dominance. The book traces the evolution of sailing expertise, showing how traditional knowledge blended with new scientific rigour. Read full story.

AI fuels research that could lead to positive impact on health care
“Brainstorm” guest contributor Paul Fraumeni speaks with four York U researchers who are applying artificial intelligence to their research ventures in ways that, ultimately, could lead to profound and positive impacts on health care in this country. Read full story.

Zika vaccine study finds inoculating would work and be cost effective
A team of researchers in the Faculty of Science ran a simulation on the effectiveness of a vaccine for the Zika virus and discovered it would be up 75 per cent effective … and a worthy investment. These findings will support health policy development and decision-making. Read full story.

SSHRC project “Archive/Counter-Archive” both visionary and disruptive
Three recent projects, part of the ground-breaking venture “Archive/Counter-Archive,” illustrate the progress to date of this high-profile SSHRC-funded venture that looks at moving images and is designed to disrupt conventional narratives. In doing so, they reinforce the value of this work. Read full story.

Highly applicable research could help brain surgeons target disease
New research from the Centre for Vision Research investigates rapid eye movements. The findings of this original work could help brain surgeons get a more fulsome picture of a patient’s brain prior to surgery, and aid in the treatment of depression and Parkinson’s disease. Read full story.

Research exposes unintended consequences of AI for consumers
Schulich School of Business Professor pens an article on artificial intelligence that suggests we may economically suffer at the hands of the machines we have created. He considers philosophical conundrums from driverless vehicles to robots for soldering, sex and companionship. Read full story.

Launched in January 2017, “Brainstorm” is produced out of the Office of the Vice-President Research & Innovation in partnership with Communications & Public Affairs; overseen by Megan Mueller, senior manager, research communications; and edited by Jenny Pitt-Clark, YFile editor and Ashley Goodfellow Craig, YFile deputy editor.