Geography Speaker Series

Speaker series offers informal talks and discussions on various geographical and environmentally related issues. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we will be offering the 2020-2021 lineup virtually. Please contact for the Zoom information.

2020- 2021 Schedule

Speaker: Masters Student Slideshow
Topic: Masters students present their research on a wide variety of topics
Date: Friday, September 18
Time: 3-4pm

Speaker: Winston Husbands, Senior Scientist, Ontario HIV Treatment Network
Topic: Anticipating the end of HIV: Implications for health, wellbeing and social justice at the end of an epidemic
Date: Friday, September 25
Time: 3:30-4:30pm

Speaker: Scholarships Committee Presents: Canadian Common CV Workshop 
Topic: How to create a Canadian Common CV 
Date: Friday, October 16
Time: 3-4pm

Speaker: Max Liboiron, Assistant Professor, Memorial University of Newfoundland
Topic: Research methods are land relations
All research methods enact land relations. They can be colonial land relations, anticolonial land relations or something else, but methodology is just another way to do land relations whether land means Nature, resource, or all my relations. Dr. Max Liboiron will discuss an anticolonial research method incubator, CLEAR, a scientific laboratory that investigates marine plastic pollution, with an eye to how these efforts can extend to research regardless of discipline or topic. The guiding question for this talk is how? How might we move good land relations into research when research legacies and standards are so often colonial, sexist, racist, elitist, macho, exclusive, individualist, masterful, and extractive? Spoiler: it’s tricky and you can start now.
Date: Friday, November 13
Time: 3:30-4:30pm

Speaker: Katharine Hayhoe, Climate Scientist 
Topic: Mitigate, Adapt or Suffer: Connecting Global Change to Local Impacts
Date: Tuesday, November 17
Time: 6pmCT / 7pmET - ZOOM Webinar 
*Followed by a panel discussion with local experts

Speaker: Victoria Fast, Assistant Professor, University of Calgary
Topic: Counter Mapping Accessible Mobilities
Abstract: People with mobility-related disabilities—representing about 15% of the Canadian population—are systemically denied free and independent access to public spaces due to barriers that inhibit movement. Stairs without ramp options, ramps without edge protection, building without automated doors, unmarked and complicated accessible routes, steep (micro)slopes—among many others—are physical barriers that present significant challenges for people with visible, hidden, and temporary disabilities. This impact of a disabling environment is especially apparent on post-secondary campus, where people with disabilities are half as likely to complete a university education as their non-disabled counterparts. Working to understand and eliminate the systemic barriers on our campuses and in our cities, I draw on GIS, data science, critical disability studies and pedestrian mobilities to counter map systemic (spatial) barriers that prevent the full participation of people with disabilities in society. In this presentation, I explain the data typology development, data collection methods, map symbology and design, and spatial analysis that supports better campus planning for people with disabilities. In telling my research story, my hope is to inspire, inform, and invite others to create an open, inclusive, and urban environments for all pedestrians.
Date: Friday, December 4
Time: 3:30-4:30pm

Speaker: Renee Pualani Louis, Associate Researcher, University of Kansas
Topic: Felting Storied Fibers: A Kanaka Hawaiʻi Cartographic Engagement
Abstract: Aloha mai, greetings, over a decade ago, I wrote an article published in Geographical Research entitled, “Can you hear us now? Voices from the margin: Using Indigenous Methodologies in Geographic Research.” At the time, I was an ABD doctoral candidate in the Geography department at the University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa. It was a pivotal piece of scholarly work that set me on a collaborative path of advocating what has become known as Indigenous research sovereignty. A lot has changed since then. But before I get to where I am headed with current and future research paths, I want to present the storied fibers, those key experiences, that are felted into the kapa, bark cloth, and shape our thinking in unimaginable ways. Oftentimes, articles and public presentations rarely reveal the inspirational rationale driving a person to challenge academic boundaries. In this presentation, I will share how I spent the last decade living and achieving the tenets set forth in that article.
Date: Friday, January 22
Time: 3:30-4:30pm

Speaker: Faisal Moola, Associate Professor, University of Guelph
Topic: Protecting the Peace: Indigenous-led conservation in the western Boreal Forest
Abstract: Forestry, energy and mineral tenures are widespread and multilayered in British Columbia’s booming Peace Region. Today, more than 65 per cent of the region has felt the impact of industrial development, leaving little intact habitat for threatened species, such as caribou. First Nations, who have relied upon caribou as their primary source of food for thousands of years, can no longer hunt them. Moose populations have also crashed and fish in the Peace River and its tributaries have become tainted with mercury and are no longer safe to consume. The loss of hunting and fishing are an infringement of the Treaty Rights of local First Nations and Canada’s obligations under the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP). In the absence of state policy to protect the ecosystems, which are critical to the exercise of Indigenous Rights, local First Nations are exerting their sovereignty in declaring large swaths of traditional territory as Tribal Parks and other Indigenous-led conservation areas. This talk will address the significance of Indigenous-led conservation for the protection of wildlife habitat in the Peace Region - and by extension the rights of Indigenous Peoples who have called the region home for millennia. 
Date: Friday, February 5
Time: 3:30-4:30pm

Speaker: PhD Student Presentations
Topic: PhD students present their research on a wide variety of topics
Date: Friday, February 26
Time: 3-4pm

Speaker: Yun Zhang, Professor, University of New Brunswick 
Topic: Big Technology Waves and New GIS and Online Mapping Technologies
Abstract: The fast-growing Spatial Big Data and the fast-changing Big Technology Waves have quickly changed the ways we operate in our daily, personal and professional lives. Google Maps is an example that has changed the way we look for and use location for information; and ESRI GIS is another example that has changed the way organizations manage, analyze and visualize information for their daily planning activities.
This talk will briefly review the global impacts brought about by Spatial Big Data and Big Technology Waves in the past two decades, using Google Maps and ESRI as examples. It will also review our contributions to Google Maps, including 2D satellite image online mapping and Street View. Then, it will introduce our new developments in 3D online mapping, change detection, and hyperspectral imaging. In conclusion, we will discuss future development trends based on the past developments, current fast growth of Spatial Big Data, and the emergence of new technologies.
Date: Friday, March 5
Time: 3:30-4:30pm

Speaker: Honours Thesis Presentations
Topic: Undergraduate Honours students present their thesis on a wide variety of topics
Date: Friday, March 26
Time: 2:00-4:15pm