Spring 2018 Lectures
An Evening with Daniel Dale: Life as a Washington Correspondent
May 3, 2018 7:30-9:00 PM
Daniel Dale will discuss what it's like to be a Canadian reporter covering American politics and the presidency during this remarkable era.
He will start with his background as a reporter covering Mayor Rob Ford and how it prepared him, and did not prepare him, for covering Trump. He will then talk about his attempts to fact-check this unique president - and the bigger question of whether facts still matter in today's America. Finally, he'll discuss what he's learned traveling the country covering the 2016 campaign and other stories.
The Trouble With Terror
April 12, 2018 1:30 to 3:30 PM
“The War on Terror” has become a hallmark of the contemporary international order. 9/11 and other terrorist attacks around the world are embedded in our collective memories as symbols of a “new” global threat. Al Qaeda, Osama bin Laden, and ISIL have become terms in the common vernacular. But is it all really anything new?
This lecture will explore some of the many dimensions of global terrorism, tracing the development of terror as a political tool across cultural, religious, and ideological dimensions of some of the best - and least - known “terrorists” in history. We will then focus on the parameters of contemporary international terror, and how the “trouble” is not just with its proliferation around the world but also with our collective responses to it: gripping us with fear and often compromising the values of our civil society.
Canada in the World - Past, Present, Future
April 19, 2018 1:30 to 3:30 PM
When Justin Trudeau became Canada's 23rd Prime Minister in 2015, he boldly announced to the world “Canada is back.” Based on the initial responses of Canadians at home and leaders abroad, his message was well received. But what did it really mean?
Would Canada reinvest in its foreign service, its international development officials or its military? Would Ottawa pursue international leadership on pressing global issues? Had Canada ever left in the first place?
This lecture explores Canadian foreign policy beginning with an overview of critical national interests and concluding by exploring a series of contemporary challenges.
The Amazing Universe
April 26, 2018 1:30 to 3:30 PM
In this profusely-illustrated, non-technical presentation, Dr. Percy hopes to convince you that the universe, as astronomers now understand it, is as amazing, wondrous, and awe-inspiring as anything you may encounter in science fiction -- and it's real!
The emphasis will be on the most current, exciting aspects of astronomy. Lots of time for questions and discussion -- on any aspect of astronomy that you wish.
Dance at the Movies
May 10, 2018 1:30 to 3:30 PM
Ever since moving pictures were invented, dance has been part of them. Film has been used to record stage performances, particularly stage musicals, but the exoticism and glamour of the dance world itself has become the subject of popular dramatic features, from The Red Shoes (1948) , through The Turning Point (1977) to the controversial Black Swan (2010).
In this lecture we'll look at some of the greatest dance ever committed to film and the stories behind them.
Artificial Intelligence and Ethics in Health Care
May 17, 2018 1:30 to 3:30 PM
The far-reaching potential and scope of artificial intelligence (AI) techniques in the health technology industry are routinely characterized as ‘revolutionary.’
AI is a branch of computer science that focuses on the ability of computers to imitate or simulate specific aspects of intelligent human behaviour.
In this lecture, Sally Bean will:
- briefly introduce the rapidly evolving use of AI in healthcare,
- present two broad use categories of AI that reflect the breadth of how and where AI is currently being applied: 1. intelligent design support that assists in clinical decision-making and 2. robotic assisted devices (e.g. used for surgeries, instrument sterilization, etc.), and
- apply an ethical, legal, and societal implications lens to help frame the discussion.
Five ways to a Better Brain: Separating the Science from Myth
May 24, 2018 1:30-3:30 PM
Can we actually DO something to reduce the risk of cognitive decline? How do we tell the difference between evidence-based science and "fake news" when it comes to understanding the things we can do to keep our brain active and healthy?
Dr. Patterson will outline the hierarchy of scientific evidence, and will explain why it is so hard to prove (and disprove) things that people earnestly believe. He will then discuss 5 strategies which may reduce the risk of cognitive decline with age. They may sound familiar, but be prepared for some surprises.
The presentation will conclude with advice on obtaining the best evidence for health information (hint: McMaster Optimal Aging Portal).