Dawn's Blog and General News Items

More public science: appearing on the ZDF series, Infestation!

  I doubted that much could top discovering that my 2013 Skype chat about plant defences got me a movie credit in a science fiction feature film! But, you never can tell where science outreach and engagement will take you. Just a few weeks after hearing about my Botanical Consultant film credit, some of my other Public Science led to just as unexpected an […]

How doing public science led to a credit in the "Flora" movie

These days, science communication, outreach, and engagement are all the rage. But when I joined York University's Biology Department as an assistant professor in 1990, the notion, that part of our responsibility, as taxpayer-funded professors, might include spending valuable time away from research, talking with non-academics, other than our students, was rather a minority opinion amongst many YorkU faculty. Since […]

Science Fairs & Science on Ice at York University

The annual Science Fair is a right of passage for many aspiring, young scientists. I've been fortunate (if that's the right word), to experience them as both a judge, and a parent. Back in the 1990s, I was blown away by the creativity and enthusiasm of the young citizen scientists when I was a judge at the annual […]

YorkU's COP22 delegation will debrief on 11 January 2017

Every November and December, the news fills with reports about the United Nations climate change talks. The UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, UNFCCC, is one of two main international platforms where climate climate change impacts, mitigation and adaptation are addressed, the other being the Inter-governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The Kyoto Protocol and […]

Guest blogging about Advent Botany at the University of Reading

  The first piece of advice I give undergraduates is: "show up to all of your lectures and labs, even if you're barely conscious". Why? Because simply being present improves your learning. As Weingardt (1997) observed, "The world is run by those who show up". My second piece of advice is, "take handwritten notes with a pencil […]

Ada Lovelace Day at York University 2016

Once again, York University's 2nd International Ada Lovelace Day celebrations involved two different events: Canada Research Chair in Radioastronomy, and Director of the University of Toronto's Dunlap Observatory, Professor Bryan Gaensler gave the Ada Lovelace Day Lecture We held a drop-in Wikipedia Editathon in Steacie Science and Engineering Library We thank York University Libraries, the Lassonde School […]