Appointments and Awards, January 2008

Wednesday, January 30, 2008 12:33:11 PM

Academic News

Ingrid Stefanovic returns in February, 2008 as Director of the Centre for Environment

Professor Ingrid Stefanovic will be returning as Director of the Centre for Environment as of February 1, 2008. She has decided to shorten her sabbatical, originally scheduled from July 1, 2007 to June 30, 2008. Until she returns, Professor Hilary Cunningham, of the Department of Anthropology, will be serving as Acting Director in January 2008. Ingrid wishes to thank Professor Philip Byer, of the Department of Civil Engineering and the Centre, for serving as Acting Director from July to December, 2007. Professors Cunningham and Stefanovic may be reached at during their respective appointments.

[January 30, 2008 update: Hilary Cunningham will resume her position as Graduate Coordinator as of February 1, 2008.]


U of T experts contribute to Nobel Peace Prize winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

The 2007 Nobel Peace Prize of $1.5 million was recently awarded on December 10, 2007 and was shared between former U.S. Vice-President Al Gore and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), for their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about human-made climate change, and to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change.

The IPCC is an inter-governmental scientific body makes assessments based on peer reviewed and published scientific/technical literature to help in the understanding of the scientific basis of the risk of human-induced climate change, its potential impacts and options for adaptation and mitigation. IPCC reports are written by teams of authors from all over the world who are recognized experts in their field. In an IPCC October 12, 2007 press release, IPCC Chairman Rajendra Pachauri states “This is an honour that goes to all the scientists and authors who have contributed to the work of the IPCC, which alone has resulted in enormous prestige for this organization and the remarkable effectiveness of the message that it contains.” Some of the experts who have contributed over the years are from the University of Toronto and/or the Centre for Environment (CFE) and include:

- Brad Bass, Environment Canada researcher at the Centre for Environment;

- Ian Burton, Environment Canada; Professor Emeritus of Geography and former Director, Institute for Environmental Studies (now Centre for Environment);

- Brenna Enright, Ph.D. student, Department of Civil Engineering;

- David Etkin, former Associate Member of CFE graduate faculty, now at York University;

- Danny Harvey, Professor, Department of Geography; Full Member of CFE graduate faculty;

- Robert Jefferies, Professor, Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology; Full Member of CFE graduate faculty;

- Grace Koshida, Environment Canada researcher at the Centre for Environment;

- Paul J. Kushner, Associate Professor, Department of Physics;

- Jay Malcolm, Associate Professor, Faculty of Forestry; Full Member of CFE graduate faculty;

- David Martell, Associate Professor, Faculty of Forestry; Full Member of CFE graduate faculty;

- Monirul Mirza, Environment Canada researcher and Associate Member of CFE graduate faculty;

- Richard Peltier, University Professor, Professor of Physics and Director of the Centre for Global Change Science;

- Henry Regier, Professor Emeritus of Zoology and former Director, Institute for Environmental Studies (now Centre for Environment);

- Theodore G. Shepherd, Professor, Department of Physics.

Source: Ian Burton, Environment Canada;; The Editor apologizes for any omissions. Please send corrections or additions to


Quentin Chiotti receives CAG Award for Geography in the Service of Government or Business

Presented to Dr. Quentin Chiotti at the Canadian Associate of Geographers’ (CAG) Annual Meeting in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, May 29-June 2, 2007, this award is in recognition of the primary importance of excellence in geography in the service of government or business. Dr. Chiotti is currently the Air Programme Director and Senior Scientist at Pollution Probe and an Associate Member of the Centre for Environment’s graduate faculty. At Pollution Probe, he is responsible for directing their initiatives and providing scientific advice on the linkages between climate change, air quality, acid rain and a range of key environmental health policy issues.

For more information:;


Thomas Homer-Dixon wins National Business Book Award

For his book The Upside of Down: Catastrophe, Creativity, and the Renewal of Civilization (Alfred A. Knopf Canada/Random House of Canada, 2006), Professor Thomas Homer-Dixon, former Director of the Trudeau Centre for Peace and Conflict Studies, University College, U of T, won the $20,000 National Business Book Award which recognizes outstanding talent in Canadian business writing. The book sets out a theory of the growth, crisis, and renewal of societies. It explores today's converging energy, environmental, and political-economic stresses that could cause a breakdown of national and global order and the things can be done now to keep such a breakdown from being catastrophic.

For more information:;


Shashi Kant receives Canadian Forestry Scientific Achievement Award

At an awards banquet in August, 2007, Professor Shashi Kant received the Canadian Institute of Forestry's Canadian Forestry Scientific Achievement award for 2007. The award recognizes unique and outstanding achievement in forestry research in Canada. An Associate Professor and Graduate Coordinator in the Faculty of Forestry, U of T, he is a world-renowned forest economist who has introduced a new paradigm of economics, termed Post-Newtonian Economics, which incorporates the basic features of sustainable development and sustainable forest management into economics. He is the Editor-in-Chief of a book series “Sustainability, Economics, and Natural Resources” focused on these issues and published by Springer, three of which have been published. Recently, his work on the softwood lumber trade dispute also appeared as a lead article in the summer 2007 issue of Tomorrow's Forest, a newsletter published by Sustainable Forest Management Network, a National Centre of Excellence.

For more information:;


Kate Parizeau receives $150,000 Trudeau Foundation Scholarship

Ph.D. student Kate Parizeau was one of two U of T students and one of 15 Canadian Ph.D. students awarded $150,000 scholarship from the Pierre Elliot Trudeau Foundation, the largest doctoral scholarships in the humanities and social sciences, to support their research. She is a student in the Department of Geography and the Centre for Environment’s collaborative Environment and Health Program, studying the environmental and health risks directed at waste collection workers in Buenos Aires during such tasks as curbside recycling. The Trudeau Foundation funds outstanding scholars who conduct research in crucial societal issues, and creates opportunities for dialogue and multidisciplinary collaboration across organizations and disciplines under four key themes: Human Rights and Social Justice, Responsible Citizenship, Canada and the World, and Humans in their Natural Environment.  

For more information: see online Winter 2007-08 news article on her research;


Scott Prudham appointed co-editor of Geoforum journal

In August, 2007, Professor Scott Prudham, Associate Professor in the Department of Geography and Centre for Environment, U of T, was appointed one of the editors of Geoforum. Published by Elsevier (, it is an international, inter-disciplinary journal, global in outlook, and integrative in approach. The broad focus of the journal is the organisation of economic, political, social and environmental systems through space and over time. Areas of study range from the analysis of the global political economy and environment, through national systems of regulation and governance, to urban and regional development, local economic and urban planning and resources management. The journal also includes a Critical Review section that features critical assessments of research in all the above areas.

For more information:;


Sarah Wakefield appointed Acting Director of the U of T Sustainability Office

Professor Sarah Wakefield will serve as Acting Director of the U of T Sustainability Office from January 1 to June 30, 2008. Dr. Wakefield is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography with research interests in urban food security, the health and sustainability of urban neighbourhoods, and public participation in local environmental management. The U of T Sustainability Office helps to reduce the environmental impact of operations on campus by bridging sustainability research and institutional practices. The Office’s goals are to substantially reduce the consumption of energy and other resources; to develop and employ policies and programs to increase energy conservation, green space and reduce waste in all the decisions, practices and procedures of the university; and to create a culture of sustainability at the University, which will be reflected in its functions and operations, resulting in tangible environmental, economic and social benefits.

For more information:;