21 upcoming “Pieces of Mind”

Here are some of the issues I will be posting on in the next few weeks – not necessarily in the order below. Some are ready, others need to be polished and analysed further. Please chip in if you will. Your submissions will be most welcome.  More on how you can help us inform the academic community follows at the bottom of the post.

1. Which bureaucracies will survive the new media age? If social media is shaking up governments around the world, shouldn’t we expect it to cause the undoing of certain bureaucracies in the Western world?

2. Universities’ Soviet style PR will be saved by social media

3. The rise of the private granting agencies. From Bill Gates to Jim Simons.

4. Canada’s many “boutiques” for funding industrial R&D and technology transfer

5. The bureaucrats’ grip on Canada’s peer review process. Mind boggling tales from the latest rounds of Discovery Grant selection at NSERC.

6. The schizophrenia in NSERC’s ways. From the enforced rigidity of a “binning based” peer review to the offensive laissez-faire of “Delivered by NSERC Regional Offices”?

7. Diversity at UBC and elsewhere. Aren’t we missing a few important pieces? We are doing well at addressing gender inequities, but what about our “too Asian” campus?

8. Concordia’s dysfunctional Board of Governors: Can it happen at UBC?

9. The industrial subsidy games, all in the name of innovation

10. Deficits in independent faculty representation within university governance? Let’s count the ways

11. Innovation successes are inherently outliers

12. Who in Canada is calling for the support of basic research?

13. Beware the rise of the “professional masters” degrees

14. UBC Land Use Plan: Now to the balancing act between academic priorities and the market place

15. Canada’s Innovation effort: Should the universities be in the driver’s seat?

16. Time to rethink NSERC!

17. Efficiency in federal program delivery. What about initiating a competition between the various federal bureaucracies?

18. Academic freedoms — Real threats or preventative pressures?

19. Reality check on Canada’s parking lot for its postdoctoral fellows

20. NSERC Discovery grants — Promoting excellence or another training program?

21. The long range plan for the mathematical sciences – A gambit or an opportunity?

Here is how you can help.
• Publicize this forum through every social medium you can think of, from Twitter and Facebook to gossip and word of mouth.
• Bookmark it, or better, subscribe to it and you will get notified whenever a new post is up.
• Comment on the “Piece of Mind” posts. Be as tough as you want. We need to know what you think.
• Send us ideas for issues that warrant attention on this blog.
• Help us with expertise on health research (CIHR), the social sciences (SSHRC), and the environment.
• Give us leads for informative stories, and scoops that the major media ignores, whether by choice or not.
• Alert us to embarrassing errors, typos and to missing links.

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1 Response to 21 upcoming “Pieces of Mind”

  1. Peter Bell says:


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