May 2013

The war on knowledge

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In This Issue

Massively Open Online Embarassment

By Steve Penfold

Massively Open Online Courses (MOOCs) may be the way of the future, but they show every sign of disrupting my intricate bargain […]

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Harper’s attack on science: No science, no evidence, no truth, no democracy

By Carol Linnitt

Science—and the culture of evidence and inquiry it supports—has a long relationship with democracy. Widely available facts have long served as a […]

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Contempt for values: The controversy over Library and Archives Canada’s Code of Conduct

By Myron Groover

Library and Archives Canada has introduced a new code of conduct that contains worrying restrictions for its employees. Myron Groover asks how the organization can fulfill its mandate while stifling the ethics and values of the library and archival professions.

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Good government and Statistics Canada: The need for true independence

By Munir A. Sheikh

The cancellation of the long form census in 2010 raised serious questions about the independence of Statistics Canada. Munir A. Sheik, former Chief Statistician of Canada, argues that Statistics Canada needs to be insulated from political interference to ensure good data and good public policy.

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The MOOC bubble and the attack on public education

By Aaron Bady

MOOCs are the hot new educational trend, garnering headlines around the world. But the hype conceals a speculative bubble, a gamble where public higher education has everything to lose and business interests have everything to gain.

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The evolution of freedom of information in Ontario: From reactive to proactice disclosure

By Ann Cavoukian, Ph.D

Much progress has been made in improving access to government information. But much more must be done; governments should embrace the ideas of Open Data and automatic disclosure to ensure accountability and citizen participation in public life.

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Canada’s universities and the loss of UCASS data: Scrambling for an alternative

By Felice Martinello

UCASS was an invaluable tool for collective bargaining and research into universities. Now that Statistics Canada has cancelled the dataset, faculty and administrators will need to find a trustworthy replacement.

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