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Found 8 results

  1. Twitter and Foursquare data shows where the well-to-do are likely to move next. Do you dread the thought of gentrification jacking up real estate prices (and stifling culture) in your neighborhood? In the future, you might only need to keep tabs on social networks to know when your part of town is changing -- British researchers have learned that Foursquare check-ins and Twitter posts can help predict gentrification. If many people start visiting unfamiliar locations in materially-deprived neighborhoods (say, trendy new restaurants) with their friends, that's usually a good sign that these areas will be gentrified before long. Accordingly, places that are dominated by locals and regulars tend to resist that shift, no matter the income levels. Moreover, the very people who tend to use Foursquare and Twitter work to the advantage of this predictive model. The researchers believe that the people who most often use these networks tend to be the affluent types who create gentrification. The very fact that they're showing up in a given region, however temporarily, may be proof enough that demographics are changing. There's only been a limited amount of testing so far, but it's promising. The check-ins and tweets accurately predicted the gentrification of London's Hackney area in recent years, and they've already identified a few additional areas (Greenwich, Hammersmith, Lambeth and Tower Hamlets) that could be next. Provided this method holds up, it could give communities a chance to mitigate the negative effects of gentrification before it's too late, such as by working on affordable housing. http://www.engadget.com/2016/04/18/predicting-gentrification-through-tweets/
  2. Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/technology/million+supercomputer+just+cool/4947908/story.html#ixzz1PNeR8W5L
  3. http://www.canada.com/technology/Canada+lose+PEARL+Arctic+research/6223842/story.html I keep hearing of researchers who are considering to leave Canada for the US and other countries because of funding. No matter how you see it, that is not a good thing. In terms of research funding, Canada feels like a third world country compared to the US (especially the mid-west), Singapore, Australia, etc. What are your thoughts on this? Is there a solution? I really like Canada, and I would not leave unless it is necessary. I hope this is just a phase, and the government will eventually realize that scientific research is important, but most people I know are far less optimistic than I am.
  4. There really is a 'nous,' and it includes us The Gazette Published: Saturday, July 12 Summer is a much-longed-for season in Quebec, but one that is rarely productive from the point of view of fraternal feeling. By the time we get past St. Jean Baptiste day and July 1, whatever communal spirit the hockey playoffs have generated between francophones and anglophones has become a little frayed. Competitive parade-going is not an exercise calculated to bind a society closer together. This year had additional challenges to solidarity, with the tensions aroused by the Bouchard-Taylor Commission report and that stylized politicians' re-enactment of the Battle of the Plains of Abraham over the federal role in the 400th anniversary of the founding of Quebec City. So it was a remarkable pleasure to learn, this week, that the linguistic, cultural and social divergences that seem to flare up so often are, according to academic researchers, basically insignificant. A new study has found that there are very few important differences in attitudes between francophones and anglophones in Quebec. Anglos here are far more like francophones than we are like anglophones in the rest of Canada or in the United States. Writing in the U.S. Journal of Social Psychology, researchers from Bishop's University conclude that Quebecers, no matter what their mother tongue, show comparable open mindedness and emotional stability and are equally productive on the job, careful, attentive and agreeable. A couple of stereotypes do remain true to some degree, the psychologists said of their sample of 50 francophones and 50 anglophones: anglophones are slightly more conservative. But centuries of living together have not only made us similar, but have also given us something of a distinct personality. That's a real "us," all of us, francophone and anglophone alike. The study authors say there are three distinct personality/culture areas in North America: Quebec; the U.S. South; the rest of Canada and the U.S. combined. In Quebec, we have opted for a system of social solidarity. Elsewhere, the preference is for a more individualistic, free-market approach to building a society. Quebec anglophones are not different from their francophone compatriots in that regard. The researchers think that because we share the same physical place and same lifestyle, we have come to share similar attitudes in many matters. This is good news, if only we could hear it. It means the weary identity politics which some use in an effort to divide us have little firm foundation. We can all get along.
  5. STATISTICS CANADA April 20, 2015 1:34 pm People in Vancouver and Toronto least satisfied with their lives: StatsCan Man under umbrella in Vancouver Vancouverites report being less satisfied with their lives than residents of other Canadian cities, according to Statistics Canada. Maybe it's the rain? Jonathan Hayward / The Canadian Press Residents of Vancouver and Toronto report being less satisfied with their lives than people in other Canadian metropolitan areas, according to a new study published by Statistics Canada. Researchers asked the residents of various census metropolitan areas to rank their overall life satisfaction on a scale of 0 to 10, where 0 was “very dissatisfied” and 10 was “very satisfied.” In Vancouver, the average score was 7.808, followed closely by Toronto at 7.818. People living in Canada’s most-satisfied metropolitan area, Saguenay, gave an average score of 8.245 out of 10. The differences are larger when you look at the percentage of people who rate their life satisfaction as a 9 or 10 out of 10. In Sudbury, 44.9 per cent of residents ranked their overall life satisfaction that high. In Vancouver, it was only 33.6 per cent. When it comes to people who were comparatively unsatisfied with their lives – giving themselves a score of only 6 or less, there are again significant differences between cities. 17.1 per cent of people in Windsor, Toronto and Abbotsford-Mission ranked their life satisfaction at a 6 or less. Only 8.6 per cent of people in Saguenay gave themselves such a low score. To figure out what accounts for the differences, researchers tested various hypotheses. They found that people who are married or are in good health tend to rank their life satisfaction much higher than others. Unemployed people are more likely to have low satisfaction, and richer people higher satisfaction. However, the report states, these personal factors don’t seem to account entirely for the variation across metropolitan areas. The researchers note that smaller communities with a population of less than 250,000 tend to report higher average life satisfaction. Also, when sorted by city size, metropolitan areas in Quebec tend to be at the top of the list: Montrealers are the most satisfied among individuals in Canada’s big cities and most likely to report life satisfaction of 8 or higher, Sherbrooke and Quebec are at the top of the mid-size communities, and Saguenay and Trois-Rivières at the top of the smaller metropolitan areas, according to the study. Although the Statistics Canada researchers don’t definitively say why this is, they point to other research that suggests levels of trust and social connections in local communities have an effect on people’s life satisfaction, as does income relative to one’s neighbours and economic inequality. sent via Tapatalk
  6. Article intéressant... IMF debunks myth: Taxing rich not bad for economy OTTAWA -- A new paper by researchers at the International Monetary Fund appears to debunk a tenet of conservative economic ideology -- that taxing the rich to give to the poor is bad for the economy. The paper by IMF researchers Jonathan Ostry, Andrew Berg and Charalambos Tsangarides will be applauded by politicians and economists who regard high levels of income inequality as not only a moral stain on society but also economically unsound. Labelled as the first study to incorporate recently compiled figures comparing pre- and post-tax data from a large number of countries, the authors say there is convincing evidence that lower net inequality is good economics, boosting growth and leading to longer-lasting periods of expansion. In the most controversial finding, the study concludes that redistributing wealth, largely through taxation, does not significantly impact growth unless the intervention is extreme. In fact, because redistributing wealth through taxation has the positive impact of reducing inequality, the overall affect on the economy is to boost growth, the researchers conclude. "We find that higher inequality seems to lower growth. Redistribution, in contrast, has a tiny and statistically insignificant (slightly negative) effect," the paper states. "This implies that, rather than a trade-off, the average result across the sample is a win-win situation, in which redistribution has an overall pro-growth effect." While the paper is heavy on the economics, there is no mistaking the political implications in the findings. In Canada, the Liberal party led by Justin Trudeau is set to make supporting the middle class a key plank in the upcoming election and the NDP has also stressed the importance of tackling income inequality. Stephen Harper's Conservatives have boasted that tax cuts, particularly deep reductions in corporate taxation, are at least partly responsible for why the Canadian economy outperformed other G7 countries both during and after the 2008-09 recession. In the Commons on Tuesday, Employment Minister Jason Kenney said the many tax cuts his government has introduced since 2006, including a two-percentage-point trim of the GST, has helped most Canadians. Speaking on a Statistics Canada report showing net median family wealth had increased by 44.5 per cent since 2005, he added: "It is no coincidence because, with the more than 160 tax cuts by this government, Canadian families, on average, have seen their after-tax disposable income increase by 10 per cent across all income categories. We are continuing to lead the world on economic growth and opportunity for working families." The authors concede that their conclusions tend to contradict some well-accepted orthodoxy, which holds that taxation is a job killer. But they say that many previous studies failed to make a distinction between pre-tax inequality and post-tax inequality, hence often compared apples to oranges, among other shortcomings. The data they looked at showed almost no negative impact from redistribution policies and that economies where incomes are more equally distributed tend to grow faster and have growth cycles that last longer. Meanwhile, they say the data is not crystal clear that even large redistributions have a direct negative impact, although "from history and first principles ... after some point redistribution will be destructive of growth." Still, they also stop short of saying their conclusions definitively settle the issue, acknowledging that it is a complex area of economic theory with many variables at play and a scarcity of hard data. Instead, they urge more rigorous study and say their findings "highlight the urgency of this agenda." The Washington-based institution released the study Wednesday morning but, perhaps due to the controversial nature of the conclusions, calls it a "staff discussion note" that does "not necessarily" represent the IMF views or policy. It was authorized for distribution by Olivier Blanchard, the IMF's chief economist. Read more: http://www.ctvnews.ca/business/imf-debunks-myth-taxing-rich-not-bad-for-economy-1.1704643#ixzz2uRo5ElZH
  7. Lead team of international researchers. MONTREAL - An international team of researchers led by scientists from the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital at McGill University have discovered the origins of a rare neurological disease known as ARSACS first appears in children and exists almost exclusively in Quebec. The discovery, published in this week’s issue of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America and singled out for special mention by the American Society for Cell Biology, revealed the disease is linked to a defect in the function of mitochondria, the energy-producing power plants of cells, which gives it a link to more common neurological diseases like Parkinson’s and ALS. This brings hope the extensive research done on those diseases will advance treatment of the rare disorder and further research in the more common diseases. “We think that by studying this disease we will not only bring treatment to those patients, but may also help to better understand how other neuro-degenerative diseases like Parkinson’s – and to a lesser degree, Alzheimer’s – function,” said Dr. Bernard Brais of the Neuro. Autosomal Recessive Spastic Ataxi of Charlevoix-Saguenay is so named because it was diagnosed among descendants of roughly 10,000 French settlers who emigrated to that region of New France. It was first recognized as a separate neurological disease in 1979. Victims show symptoms between the ages of 2 and 6 years old that include trouble walking and clumsiness. By their early 40s, sufferers must use wheelchairs and have trouble speaking. Most die in their 50s. The disease affects about 300 people in Quebec, and another 100 worldwide. In 2000, the gene that was mutated in patients was identified. All genes make proteins that carry out a certain function, but scientists didn’t know what the mutated proteins did. This year, a team of 30 scientists working at nine laboratories worldwide finally discovered that the mitochondria in neurons (cells that carry nerve impulses), particularly those found in the brain, were mutated and would shut down, leading to neurological degeneration. “You can’t even imagine what to do in terms of therapy until you know at the cellular level what’s going on,” said Dr. Peter McPherson of the Neuro. Scientists can now try different medications and chemical treatments to slow or cure the disease. Most importantly, because links were found to diseases like Parkinson’s and ALS that are also affected by mitochondrial defects, the multitude of research on those diseases, and the treatments used, can be applied to ARSACS. “For us, it definitely gives hope,” said Sonia Gobeil and Jean Groleau, whose two children were diagnosed in 2006. The Montreal couple have raised more than $2 million for research. Their children, now 6 and 8, are still fine but “we know where its going,” Gobeil said. Anything that can help to slow or cure the disease is key, the couple said. This week’s announcement was a huge step. Read more: http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Montreal+scientists+discover+origins+rare+neurological+disease/6005135/story.html#ixzz1jkNPkYI5