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Access

We've all heard the jokes: weather forecasters get it wrong. But do they really? Advances in meteorology have improved our forecasting capabilities dramatically over the last few decades, and new research is pushing the boundaries of what we can predict all the time. If the public perception is that forecasts are just coin tosses, the reason may lie in our understanding of how forecasting really works. What kinds of uncertainty are inherent to weather forecasting? How are our current models changing with new research and in our changing climate? And how do forecasters communicate this uncertainty to a public looking for clear answers?


Panelists:

David Pearson
Ph.D., Professor, Department of Earth Sciences and Co-Director, Science Communication Program, Laurentian University

Peter Kimbell
Warning Preparedness Meteorologist, Meteorological Service of Canada, Environment Canada

Date:
Thursday, June 2, 2016
7:30 p.m.

Location:
Sudbury Theatre Centre
170 Shaughnessy St, Sudbury, ON

Blog / Podcast

In partnership with:


Access

With over 500 mining sector companies operating and innovating in the Greater Sudbury area, our community has been dubbed "the Silicon Valley of mining". The mining sector isn't just a huge driver locally; some of the greatest innovations in mining have originated here and are being adopted globally. But many questions remain in the field of mining innovation. What impact do these innovations have on improving health and safety and reducing risk? Will they replace existing jobs? When we look at mining then and now, how far have we come - and where are we going?


Panelists:

Don Duval
Chief Executive Officer, Northern Centre for Advanced Technology (NORCAT)

Tammy Eger, Ph.D
Associate Professor, School of Human Kinetics and Director, Centre for Research in Occupational Safety and Health, Laurentian University

Doug Morrison
President & Chief Executive Officer, Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation (CEMI)

Date:
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury

More Information
Blog / Podcast

In partnership with:

Access Access

A prescription from your doctor details the dosage, frequency, method of administration, and duration of medication you should take. But what if your doctor handed you an equally detailed prescription for an exercise regimen? Studies show that exercise can be just as effective as frequently prescribed drugs in treating common chronic conditions like diabetes and heart disease. Who could benefit from exercise prescribed as medicine? Should we be concerned about the potential side effects, like injury, of these prescriptions? Does prescribing exercise make us less likely to do it? And what would it take to make exercise prescriptions a part of our healthcare system?


Panelists:

Lynn Kabaroff, R.Kin
Professor, Physical Fitness Management, Cambrian College of Applied Arts and Technology

Olivier Serresse, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, School of Human Kinetics, Laurentian University

Jane Thornton, M.D., Ph.D.
Resident Physician, Western University Fellow, Action Canada

Susan Yungblut, B.Sc.P.T., M.B.A.
Director, Exercise is Medicine Canada

Date:
Wednesday, March 30, 2016
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury

Blog / Podcast

In partnership with:


Access Access

Saving species or letting them disappear: it seems like an easy choice to make. Look a little closer, though, and you'll see that conservation biology can get a little weird. Conservation biologists saved the California condor and the black-footed ferret, but in doing so they drove two other species, the condor louse and the ferret louse, to extinction. What should we do when conserving one species puts another at risk? Should we celebrate the extinction of species that cause human disease, or mourn the loss of biodiversity? And what do these questions, and our answers to them, say about what we value when it comes to conservation?


Panelists:

Dawn Bazely, Ph.D.
Professor, Biology Department, Faculty of Science, York University

Gillian Crozier, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy, Laurentian University
Canada Research Chair (Tier 2) in Environment, Culture and Values

Albrecht Schulte-Hostedde, Ph.D.
Professor, Department of Biology, Laurentian University
Canada Research Chair (Tier 2) in Applied Evolutionary Ecology

Date:
Tuesday, February 23, 2016
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury

More Information
Blog / Podcast

In partnership with:


Access

While there is still no cure for HIV, new prevention methods and treatments are dramatically changing the HIV/AIDS landscape. New treatments can bring patients' viral loads down to near-undetectable levels in the blood, extending lives and reducing the chances of transmission. Although the transmission rate is slowly decreasing, some demographics remain at a higher risk for HIV than others. Indigenous communities account for 4.3% of the total Canadian population yet disproportionately account for 8% of all infections and 12.5% of new HIV infections in Canada. How can we address this new challenge while tackling stigma surrounding the infection? How can we support those living with and at risk for HIV? And how can we begin a conversation in our community about this changing landscape?


Panelists:

Tammy Bourque, BScN, RN
Primary Care Nurse, HAVEN / Hemophilia Program, Health Science North

Heather Chierici MacDonald
Northeastern Ontario Outreach / Support Services, Ontario Aboriginal HIV/AIDS Strategy

Gaston Cotnoir
Manager of Education and Community Develoment, Réseau ACCESS Network


Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Date:
Tuesday, November 24th 2015
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury

Blog / Podcast

In partnership with:


Laurentian University

Laurentian University Centre for Research in Occupational Safety and Health

Fatigue is more than feeling tired: factors like physical exertion, poor nutrition, sleep quality, mental exhaustion and stress come together to make fatigue a complex and unpleasant state of being. With tightly packed schedules and competing demands for our time, many of us believe that fatigue is the new normal. But fatigue doesn't just feel bad, it affects our moods, our relationships, our jobs, and our decision-making. Fatigue can have negative, or even dangerous consequences on our lives. But does it have to be like this? What can we do to minimize or offset fatigue? What kind of support would help to reduce fatigue in our fast-paced lives?

Panelists:

Sandra Dorman, Ph.D.,
Associate Professor, School of Human Kinetics and Director, Centre for Research in Occupational Safety and Health, Laurentian University

Alison Godwin, Ph.D.,
Associate Professor, School of Human Kinetics, Laurentian University

Caleb Leduc, Ph.D. Student,
Organisational Health and Wellbeing, Lancaster University

Zsuzsanna Kerekes, Ph.D.,
Postdoctoral Fellow, Centre for Research in Occupational Safety and Health, Laurentian University

Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Date:
Tuesday, October 20th 2015
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury

Blog / Podcast

In partnership with:

In February 2015, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled unanimously to allow competent adults in irremediable suffering to end their lives with the assistance of a physician. Federal, provincial and territorial governments are now working to craft legislation governing Canadians’ right to an assisted death, and many questions are up for debate. Who should have access to assisted dying? Which medical professionals will be involved, what will their obligations be, and what new supports will they require? What can we learn from jurisdictions like the Netherlands, Belgium and Oregon among others that already have these laws in place? And how will this change the way that we as Canadians choose to live, and to end, our lives?

Panelists:

Edward Najgebauer, M.D., M.B.A.,
Assistant Professor, Northern Ontario School of Medicine

Udo Schuklenk, Ph.D.,
Professor, Department of Philosophy and Ontario Research Chair in Bioethics and Public Policy, Queens University

Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Date:
Tuesday, September 29th, 2015
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury

Blog / Podcast

In partnership with:

Around 3% of the world's population is affected by Hepatitis C infection, with over 100,000 people living with Hep C in Ontario alone. The majority of new cases arise from intravenous drug use, but Hep C can be transmitted in a number of other ways, including pedicure and tattoo equipment. Many cases are asymptomatic, and people can carry the virus for years without knowing it. It's clear that testing and treatment are critical to slow the spread of the virus and help those living with it, but the heavy stigma associated with Hep C frequently stops patients from getting tested or from disclosing an infection to healthcare providers. What impact does stigma have on the health of people living with Hep C and other heavily stigmatized illnesses? What can be done to break down the social, structural and institutional stigma that patients face?

Panelists:

Amanda Maranzan, Ph.D., C. Psych.
Assistant Professor, Department of Psychology, Lakehead University

Heather McCracken
Family of Hepatitis C Patient

David Smookler, Ph.D.
Director of HCV Education and Treatment Access for Remote Communities, Toronto Western Hospital Liver Clinic

Lisa Toner
IDU Support Services Outreach Coordinator, Réseau ACCESS Network

Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Date:
Tuesday, May 5th, 2015
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury

Blog / Podcast

Conservation, management and hunting decisions are based on data about wildlife populations, but the role of politics in making these decisions can't be ignored. The goal of the spring bear hunt pilot program is to reduce the number of problematic human-bear interactions, but are these encounters really on the rise? Is the hunt likely to significantly reduce populations and have an effect on human safety? How are results being measured and reported on, and what effect will they have on the continuation of the program? What matters most in these decisions: science or politics?

Panelists:

Josef Hamr, Ph.D.
Coordinator, Environmental Monitoring & Impact Assessment and Environmental Field Techniques, Department of Engineering Technology and Environmental Studies, Cambrian College of Applied Arts and Technology

Mike Commito, Ph.D. Candidate
Department of History, McMaster University

Brian McLaren, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Faculty of Naural Resources Management, Lakehead University

Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Date:
Tuesday, April 14th, 2015
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury

Blog / Podcast

In partnership with:

We got to be the way we are thanks to evolution, but what role does evolution play in our health today? If the disconnect between the environment we evolved in and the one we live In today contributes to health issues like Type 2 diabetes and heart disease, should you try eating like a cave dweller? How are our actions contributing to evolution in the things that can make us sick, like bacteria, viruses, parasites and even our own cancer cells? And how can understanding our evolutionary past help us make better decisions about our health today?

Panelists:

Nicole Mideo, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology, University of Toronto

Tamara Varney, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology, Lakehead University

Albrecht Schulte-Hostedde, Ph.D
Full Professor, Department of Biology, Laurentian University
Canada Research Chair (Tier 2) in Applied Evolutionary Ecology

Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Date:
Tuesday, February 10, 2015
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury

Blog / Podcast

Our changing climate affects us all, and Canada’s North will feel its impacts first and most robustly. We often think about climate’s effects on our environments, but it is already having effects on another area: human health. How will climate change affect access to healthcare, to physical fitness opportunities, and to affordable, healthy food? Will changes in weather, water, and migration patterns make communities more susceptible to disease? What is being done to address these impacts, and what more can we do to ensure our health in a changing climate?

Panelists:

Sherilee Harper, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Population Medicine, University of Guelph

Bill Keller
Director, Climate Change and Multiple Stressor Aquatic Research, Living With Lakes Centre, Laurentian University

Helle Møller, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor, Department of Health Sciences, Lakehead University

Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

This event is part of the Science in Canada's North Program Series. Science North gratefully acknowledges the support of the W. Garfield Weston Foundation and the Canadian Association of Science Centres for their support of this event.

Supported by CASC and the W. Garfield Weston Foundation.

Date:
Tuesday, November 25, 2014
7:30 p.m.

Location:
The Laughing Buddha Café
194 Elgin St., Sudbury


Supported by:

Blog / Podcast

We've heard it all before: our reliance on motor vehicles contributes to greenhouse gas emissions, injuries and fatalities, rising obesity rates and declining health. However, the transportation challenges we face as a northern community can make addressing these issues seem impossible. Sudbury’s unique geography and harsh climate make motorized transport a near neccessity. Are we able to change the daily commute in Sudbury? What kinds of changes and innovations would work in our northern context? What is the value of walking, busing and cycling instead of driving? Is it worth the investment of time and money from our municipal government and institutions? What can we do as citizens to improve our commutes?

Panelists included:

William Crumplin, Ph.D
Associate Professor, Environment, Laurentian University

Rachelle Niemela
Chair, Sudbury Cyclists Union

Lilly Noble
Co-Chair, Friends of Sudbury Transit

Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Supported by CFMS

In partnership with Laurentian University School of the Environment Blog / Podcast

In the lead-up to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change in Paris 2015, climate change is increasingly being recognized as a force that is affecting our lives – not in the future, but today. With this increased sense of urgency, a number of social and political events calling for action are unfolding worldwide. Just this month, the United Nations will host a Climate Summit, and in anticipation of this event, a global People's Climate March is scheduled two days prior. How is climate change being tackled successfully? How well do the international and national frameworks engage with and benefit local problems and solutions? What forms of social, political, and economic engagement have been most successful, and how? In what ways do global events such as the People's Climate March succeed? What modes of action are best suited to addressing climate change so as to support our local communities and foster sustainable growth?

Panelists included:

Brett Buchanan, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Philosophy, Laurentian University
Director, School of the Environment, Laurentian University

Paul Cobb
Project Manager, Ontario Centre for Climate Impacts and Adaptation Resources, MIRARCO / Laurentian University

William Crumplin, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Environment, Laurentian University

David Robinson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor, Economics, Laurentian University
Director, Institute for Northern Ontario Research and Development, Laurentian University

Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Supported by Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Air, water, and soil quality; food quality and security; climate change and infectious diseases – there are many ways in which our environments have profound effects on our health and the health of our communities. But how should we allocate responsibilities for mediating these effects? What role should be played by governments, scientists, community advocacy groups, health care workers, and individual citizens? And how does the way we understand and communicate about "responsibilities" make a difference – particularly for those of us in Northern communities? Join us in sharing ideas and solutions to these pressing questions.

Supported by Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR), in partnership with the Canada Research Chairs Program, Laurentian University, Laurentian's Humanities M.A. Program, the Centre for Humanities Research and Creativity (CHRC), the Centre for Evolutionary Ecology and Ethical Conservation (CEEEC), and the Ethics Centre of the University of Sudbury.

Panelists included:

Gillian Crozier, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy, Laurentian University
Canada Research Chair in Environment, Culture and Values

Monique Beaudoin
Health Promotion Coordinator, Centre de santé communautaire du Grand Sudbury

Meredith Schwartz, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of Philosophy, Ryerson University

Colleen Derkatch, PhD
Assistant Professor, Department of English, Ryerson University

Moderator:
Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Blog / Podcast

Most people, at the core, believe themselves to be rational beings. But when you dig down into the psychology of belief, most of us believe things that we have no scientific support for, or hold on to beliefs that we know have been disproven. Why does misinformation stick, and what are the consequences of these mistaken beliefs? As a society, why should we care if people believe things that can be disproven? And at the end of the day, what can we do to make our own belief systems more based in fact?

Panelists included:

Charles Ramcharan
PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Biology and Cooperative Freshwater Biology Unit, Laurentian University

Chantal Barriault
MSc, Co-Director, Science Communication Graduate Program, Laurentian University

Michael Emond
PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Psychology, Laurentian University

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Darwin's Legacy Supported by Blog / Podcast

Charles Darwin's theory of natural selection was so revolutionary that it changed the whole field of natural history and the way we see ourselves. Will we ever see another discovery that shifts our paradigms so dramatically? How does evolutionary thought influence current research in molecular genetics? What historical conditions allowed Darwin to arrive at his discovery? In today's research environment, could a self-taught naturalist ever change the way we see our world?

Panelists included:

Thomas Merritt
PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Canada Research Chair in Genomics and Bioinformatics, Laurentian University

Peter Nosko
PhD, Associate Professor, Department of Biology, Nipissing University

Anne Clendinning
PhD, Associate Professor, Department of History, Nipissing University

David Legros
M.Sc., Natural Heritage Education Specialist, Algonquin Park

Moderator: Franco Mariotti
Staff Scientist, Science North

The uncertain future of Canada's Arctic is a matter of pressing public concern, but most Canadians will never experience this changing landscape firsthand. Most of us must rely instead on information sent back to us by researchers, traditional knowledge holders, and documentarians. But whose stories are being told, and what kinds of images, data, and stories have the greatest impact on motivating public concern? How are scientific and traditional knowledge about Canada's North being integrated? Who speaks for Canada's Arctic: researchers, traditional inhabitants, polar bears, or politicians?

This event was part of the Science in Canada's North Café Scientifique Series. Science North gratefully acknowledges the support of the W. Garfield Weston Foundation and the Canadian Association of Science Centres for their support of this event.

Panelists included:

Jeremy Brammer
Ph.D. Candidate, Department of Wildlife Biology, McGill University

Brandon Laforest
Ph.D. Candidate, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University

David F. Lickley
Filmmaker, Wonders of the Arctic, Lickley Productions

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

The current rate of species loss on our planet is alarming, but scientists and conservationists are divided about the best response to this extinction crisis. Is it possible to save all species, and should we even try? What is the value of a species, and what is lost in extinction? If it is not possible to save all species, how should we make decisions about where to focus our conservation efforts? Do we have a responsibility to conserve as many species as possible... or even bring some back?

In partnership with Thinking extinction

Panelists included:

Brett Buchanan
Associate Professor, Department of Philosophy, Laurentian University

Matt Chrulew
Adjunct Researcher, School of Humanities, University of New South Wales

David Lesbarreres
Associate Professor, Department of Biology, Laurentian University

Thomas Nudds
Professor Emeritus, Department of Integrative Biology, University of Guelph

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

TV shows and movies about crime solving have exploded in popularity in recent years, but real-life forensic research is much more complicated, and much more diverse, than what we see on the screen. Is forensic science in the media actually affecting real-life court cases, and are criminals walking free because of junk science? Meet experts from Laurentian's Department of Forensic Science and hear some myths busted about forensics. Supported by NSERC.

Panelists included:

Dr. Scott Fairgrieve
Full Professor, Department of Forensic Science and Director, Forensic Osteology Laboratory, Laurentian University

Dr. Gerard M. Courtin
Professor Emeritus, Adjunct Professor, Department of Forensic Science, Laurentian University

Dr. James Watterson
Associate Professor and Chair, Department of Forensic Science, Laurentian University

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Over the past 120 years, the Sudbury landscape has experienced two dramatic transformations: first from deforestation and pollution and more recently through an ambitious regreening effort. How far have we come towards transforming our city into a sustainable community in a thriving landscape? What remains to be done, and what steps must we now take to achieve our ongoing goals? Discuss these questions, and more, with key players in the regreening effort. Panelists included:

Dr. Stephen Monet
Manager, Environmental Planning Initiatives, City of Greater Sudbury

Glen Watson
Environmental Biologist, VALE

Dr. Peter Beckett
Biologist, Laurentian University and Head of City of Greater Sudbury's Regreening Committee

Lisa Leger
Environmental Biologist, Xstrata Nickel

Moderator: Jennifer Beaudry
Staff Scientist, Dynamic Earth

Do well-meaning foreign aid NGO projects really have a long-lasting positive impact in the communities they are trying to help? What are the factors behind successful projects, and how can you ensure that your aid is really helping? Come hear the stories of local representatives of foreign aid initiatives, and join the discussion of what works to effect change. Panelists included:

Carissa MacLennan
Director of Education and Youth Engagement, Jane Goodall Institute of Canada

Jason Vaillancourt
Student and active member of the Health Promotion project, Laurentian University

David Wiwchar
Teacher and vice-principal, Lively Secondary School

Lori Adams
Coordinator, Sudbury Minga for Masaai

Moderator: Ashley Larose
Staff Scientist, Science North

Headlines have been dominated by recent announcements of the closing and withdrawal of funding of several of Canada’s leading environmental research stations, including the Experimental Lakes Area (ELA) and Polar Environment Atmospheric Research Lab (PEARL). What is the public value of these research stations? What is the impact that these closures will have on the future of environmental science and policy in Canada? Panelists included:

Zen Mariani
PhD Candidate, University of Toronto
Research conducted at PEARL

Heidi Swanson, PhD
Postdoctoral Fellow, University of Alberta
Founding Director of Save ELA

John Gunn, PhD
Director, Living With Lakes Centre, Laurentian University
Canada Research Chair in Stressed Aquatic Ecosystems

Moderator: Amy Henson
Staff Scientist, Science North

Scientific research pushes the boundaries of what we know and uncovers new truths about the world around us. But how is scientific truth established? With sometimes contradictory findings in the news, how do we know what to believe? And since mistakes sometimes slip by the peer-review system, would involving non-scientists boost the integrity of new research? Panelists included:

Charles Ramcharan
Associate Professor, Department of Biology and Cooperative Freshwater Biology Unit, Laurentian University

Chantal Barriault
Senior Scientist, Research and Evaluation, Science North
Co-Director, Science Communication Graduate Program, Laurentian University

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Depression is a serious mental health concern that not only affects brain and behavior—it affects the entire body. While depression is a common mental illness among the general population, it is even more likely to occur in those with type 2 diabetes. There is evidence that depression is both a risk factor for the development of type 2 diabetes and a risk factor for developing serious complications in people with type 2 diabetes.

Doctors and researchers are realizing that physical health and mental health are more interconnected than we ever thought. But are we aware enough of the effects of mental illness on the whole body? Are we doing enough to prevent those who are dealing with illness from developing depression? And would a better understanding of the physical aspects of mental illness help to break down the stigma that still surrounds it? Discuss these questions and more with experts at this event. Panelists included:

Dr. Norbert Schmitz
Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry and Associate Member, Department of Epidemiology, Biostatistics & Occupational Health, McGill University

Discussant: Gary Petingola
Diabetes Social Worker, Sudbury Outpatient Centre, Health

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

One of the most identifying and unifying features of the Arctic is ice, and the properties of ice and the ecosystems it supports are fundamental to understanding the Arctic now and in the future. The area of the Arctic that is covered by ice year round has dropped from nearly half to about 20%, with potentially grave consequences for the global climate.

This event was part of the Science in Canada's North Café Scientifique Series. Science North gratefully acknowledges the support of the W. Garfield Weston Foundation and the Canadian Association of Science Centres for their support of this event.

Panelists for the evening included:

Neil Comer, Ph.D.
Research Climatologist, Climate Collaborating Initiatives, University of Prince Edward Island

Gerard Courtin, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus, Adjunct Professor, Department of Forensic Science, Laurentian University

Adrienne White, M.Sc. Candidate
Laboratory for Cryospheric Research, Department of Geography, University of Ottawa

Moderator: Franco Mariotti
Staff Scientist, Science North

The BODY WORLDS family of exhibitions exists because individuals choose to donate their bodies for Plastination. This may seem extraordinary, but we all make decisions that require us to consider the "ownership" of our bodies. Panelists for the evening included:

David A. MacLean, Ph.D
Division of Medical Sciences
Northern Ontario School of Medicine

Carol Collier, Ph.D.
Associate Professor
Department of Philosophy
University of Sudbury (Laurentian University)

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

SNOLAB is a world-class particle research facility, located two kilometres below the ground at the Vale Creighton mine in Lively. This Café focused on how, and why SNOLAB hunts for dark matter and neutrino particles. Panelists for the evening included:

Corina Nantais
Master's student
Queens University

Dr. Christine Kraus
Professor
Laurentian University Department of Physics

Dr. Nigel Smith
SNOLAB Director

Moderator: Simon Strasser
Staff Scientist, Science North

Play Decide: Energy and Sustainability Supported by NSERC

Environmental topics are in the news and on our minds. This cafe gave participants the chance to express their own thoughts during a Play Decide, which is a group directed, policy focused game. A local environmental expert, Dr. Dave Pearson got the ideas flowing.

Moderator: Amy Henson
Staff Scientist, Science North

Commemorate the 100th anniversary of the Titanic's first and final voyage with a look backward in time and forwards to the future. From identifying the youngest victim of the Titanic, to personalized medicine and genetic counselling, explore what genetic research happening in Northern Ontario can tell us about our past, present and future. Panelists included:

Dr. Ryan Parr
Chief Scientific Officer
Mitomics Inc.

Dr. Amadeo Parissenti
Affiliate Scientist, Tumour Biology Research Group
Health Sciences North

Heather Dorman
Genetic Counsellor
Health Sciences North

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Reproduction is fundamental to the survival of any species, but what about everything else that comes with it? Is love biological? Is sex cultural? Is it all just instinct? From the fundamentals of mammal mating to relationships in our current society, our panelists will uncovered some very big questions. Panelists included:

Dr. Michael White
Psychotherapist
White Pine Counselling

Dr. Frank Mallory
Professor, Department of Biology
Laurentian University

Dr. Albrecht Schulte-Hostedde
Professor, Department of Biology
Laurentian University

Moderator: Jenny Fortier
Staff Scientist, Science North

Getting Fit: Carrot or Stick? Supported by NSERC

As Canadian fitness levels plummet, health officials and fitness centres are trying all kinds of strategies to get people moving. Is there an ideal fitness level for everyone? What’s harder on your body: marathon training, or a CSI marathon? And what really gets people active: relaxing fitness guidelines or encouraging them to go harder, faster, longer? Panelists included:

Mike Coughlin
2nd Place Winner of the 2011 Ultraman Competition in Hawaii

Celine Boudreau-Lariviere
Kinesiology Program Coordinator, School of Human Kinetics
Laurentian University

Brian Woods
Fitness Program Coordinator
YMCA Sudbury

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Greening our Energy: Energy Sources and Alternatives Supported by NSERC

What's the current state of energy in Sudbury, and where are we going? Is there any truth to claims of health effects from new technologies? What you can do to green your energy use? Panelists included:

Dr. Dean Millar
Professor, Department of Engineering
Laurentian University

Jason Swiatek
Project Coordinator
Sudbury Hydro

Pierre Harrison
Builder of an energy-efficient straw-bale home in the Greater Sudbury Area

Moderator: Leigha Benford
Science Intern, Science North

Are mind-enhancing drugs a no-brainer?

Drugs have improved the quality of life of many Canadians who struggle with depression or attention deficit disorder. But should they be used to enhance mood or concentration for those who are unaffected by these symptoms? Is it cheating to use drugs to focus on studying? If you could take a pill and be happier, why wouldn’t you? This cafe gave participants the chance to express their own thoughts during a Play Decide, which is a group directed, policy focused game.

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Is Our Food System Secure Supported by NSERC

Could Sudbury self-sustain? What about Ontario, Canada, or North America? Panelists included:

Amy Hallman
Northern Ontario FarmON Coordinator
Eat Local Sudbury

Doreen Ojala
Project Manager
The Foodshed Project Sudbury

Julie Poirier Mensinga
Agricultural Business Management Specialist
Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs

Moderator: Leigha Benford
Science Intern, Science North

The Joy of Sexes: Health and Stereotypes Supported by Canadian Institutes of Health Research

How do sex and gender affect your health? It's clear that men and women have different physical concerns, but there are differences in how we think about our own health, and how the health care system typically approaches us. Panelists included:

Dr Stacey Ritz
Associate Professor
Northern Ontario School of Medicine

Dr. Lisa Graves
Associate Dean
Undergraduate Medical Education
Northern Ontario School of Medicine

Dr. Gary Kinsman
Professor, Department of Sociology
Laurentian University

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North

Stress: Too Much, or Not Enough? A Relaxing Discussion Supported by Canadian Institutes of Health Research

Is stress stressing you out? Discover the biology and psychology of stress. Panelists included:

Dr T.C. Tai
Associate Professor
Division of Medical Sciences
Northern Ontario School of Medicine

Behdin Nowrouzi
Ph.D. Student
Laurentian University

Moderator: Margaret Mroziewicz
Graduate Student, Science Communication

Is your destiny in your DNA? To what extent does our genetic makeup determine our health, characteristics and behaviour? How does the environment play a role in shaping who we are? A better understanding of how our genes and the environment combine will help us understand disease and develop better medicines. Panelists included:

Dr Amadeo Parissenti
Research Director, Regional Cancer Program of the Hôpital Régional de Sudbury Regional Hospital
Professor, Northern Ontario School of Medicine

Dr. Robert Lafrenie
Laboratory Director, Regional Cancer Program of the Hôpital Régional de Sudbury Regional Hospital
Associate Professor, Northern Ontario School of Medicine

Dr Stacey Ann Ritz
Assistant Professor, Northern Ontario School of Medicine

Moderator: Dana Murchison
Staff Scientist, Science North