Giving dummies to babies can slow their ability to talk

Telegraph UK Mon Oct 12 2015

Thumb sucking and using pacifiers can delay babies’ speech development, a new UBC study suggests.

Researchers Alison Bruderer and Janet Werker say their finding calls into question previous assumptions that hearing is the main factor in speech development.

“This study indicates the freedom to make small gestures with their tongue and other articulators when they listen to speech may be an important factor in babies’ perception of the sounds,” Werker said.

Trans-Pacific Partnership deal makes Canada a trade leader

MSN Tue Oct 13 2015 By: Chuck Chiang

UBC Institute of Asian Research professor Paul Evans says that without China, the Trans-Pacific Partnership could economically divide the Asia-Pacific region.

“What I’m really afraid of is a dividing line in Asia, where trade arrangements become the foundation of strategic confrontations, so that the region is divided into a China sphere and a TPP-like Western sphere,” Evans said.

Similar articles appeared in Vancouver Sun and Ottawa Citizen.

Opinion: Comparing climate policies

The Vancouver Sun Wed Oct 7 2015 By: Kathryn Harrison

UBC political science professor Kathryn Harrison compares the four national parties’ election platforms and says the Greens offer the clearest program to fight climate change with the NDP running a close second.

“[T]he Conservatives, Liberals, and NDP each have left the door open to one or more pipelines, though the NDP assessments would include climate impacts,” Harrison wrote in a Vancouver Sun op-ed.

PhD student builds school and offers hope for a future

La Source Tue Oct 6 2015 By: Mariam Baldeh

Joash Gambarage, a Tanzanian PhD candidate at UBC, is using some of the funds from his UBC scholarship to make elementary school education more accessible to low-income children from his small town. The Mugeta school project has 105 children enrolled, most of them receiving free education.

UBC Symphony Orchestra to perform free concert in Surrey

Surrey Leader Tue Oct 6 2015 By: Sheila Reynolds

The UBC Symphony Orchestra is celebrating UBC’s 100th anniversary with a free evening concert on Friday in Surrey. Conductor Jonathan Girard will lead the 90-member orchestra.

Careful, the TPP could yet be a ‘pig in a poke’

National Post Wed Oct 7 2015 By: Michael Byers

UBC professor Michael Byers says Canadians should wait until the complete details of the Trans-Pacific Partnership have been revealed before gauging its impact.

Byers, the Canada Research Chair in Global Politics and International Law at UBC, said it remains to be seen if the TPP deal complies with Canadian law and policy and balances consumer rights and patent protections.

Minority governments can still get things done: professor

CTV News Thu Oct 8 2015 By: Kristy Kirkup

Maxwell Cameron, director of UBC’s Centre for the Study of Democratic Institutions, released a paper Thursday that argues minority governments can still be effective.

“Minority or coalition governments can better represent the interests of the majority of Canadians by emphasizing co-operation between parties instead of polarization,” Cameron wrote. “Increased representation of Canadian interests in government yields policies that benefit Canadians broadly.”

A similar article appeared on Yahoo.

Raise tax on high-end Vancouver homes: expert

The Globe and Mail Wed Oct 7 2015 By: Mike Hager

UBC geography professor David Ley proposed a more progressive property transfer tax on luxury homes at the Urban Development Institute forum on foreign ownership Wednesday.

Ley, who studies housing bubbles, said this option would end up lowering prices and improving affordability in Metro Vancouver. He noted that cities like London, Hong Kong and Singapore have raised taxes on the top tier of real estate to between 12 per cent and 15 per cent.

A similar article appeared in the Vancouver Sun.

Trans-Pacific Partnership could benefit Canada-China trade

The Vancouver Sun Tue Oct 6 2015 By: Chuck Chiang

An article on the Trans-Pacific Partnership quotes Yves Tiberghien, director of UBC’s Institute of Asian Research, saying that the TPP is unlikely to dramatically change Canada’s relationship with China.

Tiberghien said TPP has been in the spotlight for at least five years, and Beijing has already put in place counter-initiatives, including the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank.

“The issue is really not with Canada but a larger, global game between the United States and China,” Tiberghien said.

A similar story appeared on MSN.

I was wrong. Canada needs mandatory voting

University Affairs Tue Oct 6 2015 By: David Moscrop

UBC political scientist David Moscrop argues for mandatory voting in a National Post op-ed.

Mandatory voting would ensure that Canadians’ preferences are better reflected in Parliament and in laws and policies, Moscrop said. It would free up resources that are currently spent on getting people to vote. Requiring Canadians to vote would also force the parties to reach out to groups that are less advantaged or currently underrepresented.

A trade deal is no excuse to milk taxpayers

University Affairs Wed Oct 7 2015 By: Yuen Pau Woo

Yuen Pau Woo, a senior fellow at SFU and UBC, believes the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement is a missed opportunity to reform Canada’s dairy supply management.

“[I]nstead we have entrenched the system, which already costs the economy about $28-billion a year, according to the Conference Board of Canada,” Woo wrote. “So shed no tears for dairy and poultry farmers in Canada. So far, their industry has emerged as a winner in the TPP outcome, with consumers once again on the other side of the ledger.”

The hot mess of student activism

University Affairs Wed Oct 7 2015 By: Diane Peters

An article on student activism mentions how student groups in the 1970s helped change attitudes toward sexuality, but that nowadays there seems to be nothing left to fight for.

UBC sociology lecturer Rachael Sullivan says the work on the LGBT front has grown more complex and students are now asking for things like all-gender washrooms. “It’s no longer an activist issue, it’s about shifting the culture,” Sullivan said.

Experts refute Harper’s claim pot is more dangerous than tobacco

The Globe and Mail Tue Oct 6 2015 By: Mike Hager

UBC political science professor Richard Johnston believes Stephen Harper’s comparison between tobacco and marijuana was probably designed to appeal to the moral conservatives in his party base, while implying that Justin Trudeau lacks social responsibility.

There is no evidence that moderate, long-term use of marijuana results in significant health costs, says M.J. Milloy, who is studying the therapeutic effects of marijuana at the B.C. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS.

Listening to the elders

CBC Doc Project Tue Oct 6 2015

CBC reporter Duncan McCue sent his students out into a First Nations community to learn about its elders first-hand as part of a journalism course he teaches at UBC.

Listen to the podcast.

Are election polls trustworthy?

CKNW Mon Oct 5 2015

Serious errors in the polling industry are increasing, a new UBC study found. The last provincial election was just one example.

A similar article appeared in AM 730.