Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Multidisciplinary collaboration in data-driven persuasive technology

This week the University of Waterloo signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of Twente to establish an international, transatlantic data research network rooted in the combination of engineering and sciences with social and health sciences.

Combining Waterloo strengths in health, engineering, and computer science, with University of Twente’s expertise in social sciences, this will be one of the largest international teams assembled to work together in data-driven persuasive technology. Both institutions have a strong track record in applying research in persuasive technology, cognitive ergonomics, sensors and automation, and data science technology including big data, data analytics and the Internet-of-things, within healthcare. To date, over 20 researchers have committed to be part of this collaboration.

The partnership builds upon an existing foundation of strong and productive interactions between Waterloo and Twente. Professor Lisette van Gemert-Pijnen, head of the Centre for eHealth & Wellbeing Research also holds an adjunct appointment at the University of Waterloo to collaborate on usability of interface design. Along with Olga Kulyk, assistant professor in Persuasive Health Technology at Twente, they have worked closely with Waterloo systems design engineering Professor Catherine Burns, Director of the Centre for Bioengineering and Biotechnology (CBB).

An International Research Partnership - EU Grant (IRPG) was created between Waterloo’s CBB and the University of Twente  in November 2015 to further strengthen this international collaboration and pursue data-driven persuasive technology.

As part of this MOU, two joint workshops will be held in 2016-2017, beginning with the June 6 to 9, 2016 Data-driven Persuasive Technology for Smart & Healthy Society workshop at the University of Twente. The focus of these workshops will be to further strengthen the international research collaboration to develop research proposals and build strategic activities.

For more information about future workshops please contact Krystina Bednaroski, CBB Assistant, 519-888-4074 ext 32732.

Library to celebrate International Archives Day

The entrance of the Doris Lewis Rare Book Room in the Dana Porter library.

The Library's Special Collections & Archives is inviting the campus community to attend an informal chat about the archives donation process as part of the annual International Archives Day (IAD) celebration.

International Archives Day is celebrated around the world to help people understand why it is important to support archives and the archival profession.

In keeping with this year’s theme “Archives, Harmony and Friendship”, Special Collections & Archives would like to invite members from the Waterloo community to meet with them and learn about some recent generous donations the Library has received, including those from University staff and faculty.  

Library staff will talk about the donation process from start to end and answer questions about the variety of material that is (and is not) collected.

The event takes place on Thursday, June 9 from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. in the Doris Lewis Rare Book Room (LIB131).

Peacebuilding conference takes place this week

Two hundred peacebuilding academics and practitioners will meet at Conrad Grebel University College for a four-day event from June 9 to 12. The Global Mennonite Peacebuilding Conference and Festival will bring together professionals, thinkers, and artists from 18 countries to reflect on Anabaptist-Mennonite peacebuilding successes and failures of the past and present and to dialogue on challenges and opportunities for the future.

In addition to four plenary sessions featuring storytelling and analysis of peacebuilding thought and practice, the conference will also feature the arts. In and around the Grebel spaces will be photography and archival exhibits, including the exhibit ‘Stories in Art from Iraqi Kurdistan’ now on display in the MSCU Centre for Peace Advancement’s Grebel Gallery.

On Thursday, June 9, a public concert of ‘Voices for Peace’ will be held in the University’s Theatre of the Arts, featuring the University Choir, the Grebel Balinese Gamelan, and Earth Peace, an original composition by Carol Ann Weaver. On Saturday, June 11, Theatre of the Beat will premiere the play Yellowbellies: An Alternative History of WWII that tells the story of Canada’s conscientious objectors.

“I am excited about this historic opportunity for ‘people of peace’ to gather, reflect, and debate on challenges for Anabaptist-Mennonites who want to address conflict and violence in their homes, in their communities, and in their national contexts,” says Marlene Epp, professor of History and Peace and Conflict Studies at Grebel and conference co-chair. “I am pleased that one emphasis of this gathering will be Settler Mennonite-Indigenous relations, as Waterloo Region is a place where those peoples encountered each other in ways that today require a spirit and agenda of reconciliation.”

Mary Lou Klassen (Conference Coordinator), Marlene Epp (Grebel Dean, History and PACS prof), and Reina Neufeldt (PACS prof).

Mary Lou Klassen (conference coordinator), Marlene Epp (Grebel dean, History and PACS professor), and Reina Neufeldt (PACS professor) have been the main organizers of the event.

The conference banquet on Friday will feature the theme of Indigenous-Settler relations with indigenous educator and activist Leah Gazan.

The conference includes 30 workshops and sessions on issues such as conscientious objection, interfaith and inter-ethnic conflict, restorative justice, refugee rights, gender and sexual violence, peace education, and economic justice.

The conference and festival has received generous financial support from many organizations, including Mennonite Central Committee, Mennonite Church Eastern Canada, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and the Faculty of Arts at University of Waterloo. Mennonite Savings and Credit Union is the conference sponsor.

UN Under-Secretary-General visits, other notes

The winning President's Golf Tournament card.

Under par for the course: Pictured above is the winning scorecard at Monday's 2016 President's Golf Tournament, achieved by four Waterloo engineering alumni: Maneesh Mehta, John McPhee, Roy Ojala, and Albert Singh. The President's Golf Tournament raised nearly $70,000 for Waterloo student athletes. Photograph by Maneesh Mehta.

Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Executive Director of UN Women, visits campus today to mark the first anniversary of Waterloo’s involvement in the United Nation Women’s HeForShe IMPACT 10x10x10 initiative.

The audience for the UN Under-Secretary-General.Ms. Mlambo-Ngcuka’s remarks take place in the Board and Senate room in Needles Hall (NH 3407) at 9:00 a.m. this morning. Pictured at right is the packed house.

Information Systems & Technology (IST) will be carrying out tests to integrate the Skype for Business Instant Messaging feature into the range of channels for communicating announcements from the University's Emergency Notification Tool.

These tests will take place today between 9:00 a.m. and 9:15 a.m.

Skype for Business users will receive an instant message from an administrator account indicating that the message they are receiving is a test of the University's emergency notification system and that no action is required.

The Spring 2016 final examination schedule is available on the Registrar's Office website.

In response to student concerns and in support of academic integrity initiatives, students are prohibited from consuming food and drinks (with the exception of water in a clear bottle with no label) during their final examinations. Students can, however make arrangements for a short nutrition break with a Proctor outside the exam venue during the final exam.

If a single, short break will not be sufficient because a student is medically required to consume food/drinks regularly during a final exam, he/she must register for special accommodations with AccessAbility Services and must submit appropriate documentation from a recognized professional at least three weeks prior to the start of the final examination period.

St. Paul’s GreenHouse is hosting the Founders Forum on Health and Wellbeing on June 16 from 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. in the Velocity Start space. Find out how social entrepreneurs at Waterloo get started. June 16, 9:30-11:30 am at Velocity Start. Please register in advance.

Employers on campus next week hosting employer information sessions include Meraki, Canadian Tire, and ConsenSys. Visit the employer information sessions calendar for more details.

Faculty: secure $70,000 for your top-notch postdocs

The Postdoctoral Office would like to encourage faculty members to invite highly competitive postdoctoral fellowship (PDF) candidates to apply to the Banting PDF program. 

The prestigious Banting PDFs are valued at $70,000 per year (taxable) for two years. Please encourage prospective international and domestic applicants to visit Waterloo’s Banting PDF website for institutional timelines and processes.

Interested applicants must e-mail a copy of their application (in pdf format) to Heidi Mussar in the Graduate Studies Office by the firm deadline of Monday, July 20 at 8:00 p.m. EST.

Link of the day

Imposter rock bands of the late 1960s

When and where

Undergraduate School on Experimental Quantum Information Processing (USEQIP), Monday, May 30 to Friday, June 10, Quantum-Nano Centre.

Writing Centre presents Grammar workshop series, every Wednesday in June, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.

Matthews Golf Classic, Monday, June 6, all day, Grand Valley Golf Course.

President's Golf Tournament, Monday, June 6, all day, Westmount Golf Club.

Public Address by UN Under-Secretary-General Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka, Wednesday, June 8, 9:00 a.m., NH 3407.

Workshop - finding conference proceedings, Wednesday, June 8, 2:00 p.m., DC 1568.

Book Launch - After Identity: Mennonite Writing in North America, Wednesday, June 8, 7:00 p.m., Conrad Grebel Room 2202.

UW Gamelan Ensemble Concert, Wednesday, June 8, 7:30 p.m., Theatre of the Arts, Modern Languages. Free admission.

Velocity Start presents Setup Your Business Like A Boss, Wednesday, June 8, 7:30 p.m., Velocity Start, SCH 2nd Floor. 

Global Mennonite Peacebuilding Conference, Thursday, June 9 to Sunday, June 12, Conrad Grebel University College.

Bike Breakfast, Thursday, June 9, 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., Dana Porter Quad.

The Library presents International Archives Day celebration, Thursday, June 9, 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m., LIB 131.

Student Success Office presents Global Intelligence, Thursday, June 9, 5:00 p.m., SCH 108A.

Voices for Peace concert, Thursday, June 9, 7:30 p.m., Theatre of the Arts, Modern Languages. 

Say it in your own words: paraphrase and summary, Friday, June 10, 12:00 p.m.

Public Education event, “Living With Age-Related Macular Degeneration (AMD),” Saturday, June 11, 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m., School of Optometry & Vision Science, Room 347.

Student Success Office presents Personality Dimensions, Saturday, June 11, 11:00 a.m., SCH 108A.

Student Success Office presents Effective Meetings, Saturday, June 11, 2:00 p.m., SCH 108A.

Yellow Bellies, Saturday, June 11, 7:30 p.m. and Sunday, June 12, 2:30 p.m., Theatre of the Arts, Modern Languages.

Student Success Office presents Presentation Skills, Monday, June 13, 11:00 a.m., SCH 108A.

Bike Breakfast, Tuesday, June 14, 8:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m., Dana Porter Quad.

Spring Convocation ceremonies, Tuesday, June 14 to Saturday, June 18.

Research Seminar: Gerald McKinley, Western University, “Sydemics of Substance Use, Violence and Suicide: Public Health partnerships with First Nations Communities in Northern Ontario”, Tuesday, June 14, 10:30 a.m., Pharmacy 1008.

UWRC Book Club featuring Ariel Lawhon, "The Wife, the Maid, and the Mistress," Wednesday, June 15, 12:00 p.m., LIB 407.

Recreation and Leisure Studies presents “Legacies of Flow” featuring Dr. Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi, Wednesday, June 15, 2:30 p.m., STC 1012. Note: this event has been cancelled.

Velocity Start presents Do People Want Your Sh*t?, Wednesday, June 15, 7:30 p.m., Velocity Start, SCH 2nd Floor. 

Founders Forum on Health and Wellbeing, Thursday, June 16, 9:30 a.m., Velocity Start. Organized by St. Paul’s GreenHouse. Please register in advance.

2016 J.W. Graham Medal Seminar featuring Tas Tsonis, “How I used Math and Software to get into every Fashion House in the world...”, Thursday, June 16, 2:00 p.m., DC 1302.

CBB Panel Discussion: Engaging Hospitals in Research Projects, Friday, June 17, 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., DC 1302.

Electrical and Computer Engineering Distinguished Lecture featuring Professor Shankar Sastry, "Societal Scale Cyber Physical Systems," Friday, June 17, 2:00 p.m., EIT 3142.

HeForShe Distinguished Lecture, Celine Latulipe, Associate Professor at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, “Team-based learning and pedagogy for gender inclusiveness in STEM, Monday, June 20, 1:00 p.m., MC 2065.

Senate meeting, Monday, June 20, 3:30 p.m., NH 3407.

IQC Public Lecture featuring Bill Unruh, University of British Columbia, "The detection of gravitational waves on Earth," Wednesday, June 22, 7:00 p.m., QNC 0101.

MOTUS: Collaborative Performance Art, Thursday, June 23, 6:30 p.m., The Theatre, Kitchener Public Library.

Farewell reception for Principal Graham Brown: Monday, June 27, 4:00 p.m., Alumni Hall, St. Paul’s University College.

Canada Day holiday, Friday, July 1, most University buildings and services closed.

Canada Day celebration, Friday, July 1, 4:00 p.m., Columbia Lake field.

Velocity Fund $5K Qualifier – Night 1, Wednesday, July 6, 7:00 p.m., Quantum-Nano Centre Room 0101.

Velocity Fund $5K Qualifier – Night 2, Thursday, July 7, 7:00 p.m., Quantum-Nano Centre Room 0101.

Positions available

On this week's list from the human resources department, viewable through myHRinfo:

  • Job ID# 3247 – Administrative Assistant – Political Science, USG 7
  • Job ID# 3241 – Building Serviceperson I – Locksmith – Plant Operations
  • Job ID# 3250 – Graduate Academic Administrator – Electrical and Computer Engineering, USG 5
  • Job ID# 3242 – Electrical Helper – Plant Operations

Internal secondment opportunities, viewable on myCareer@uWaterloo:

  • Client Support Specialist – Information Systems & Technology, USG 7

  • Information Systems Specialist (Project/Program Manager), Portfolio Management – Information Systems & Technology, USG 12-14