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UBC Publications

UBC Publications

UBC Reports Feb 21, 2002

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3 Research matters
Mark your calendars for a
celebration of research
8  Dollars, no sense
Is b.c.'s economy as bad as
the budget suggests?
VOLUME     48     I      NUMBER    4     |      FEBRUARY    2 1,     2002
ubc reports
making waves   1998 Commonwealth Games bronze medalist Jessica Deglau fine-tunes her stroke in preparation for the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (cis)
Swim Championships, which begin tomorrow at the ubc Aquatic Centre. Deglau, a fourth-year Arts student and a member of Canada's 2000 Olympic team, is
expected to lead ubc's women's team to their fifth consecutive cis Championship, ubc's men's team is also heavily favoured to win their fifth straight national
crown. If so, it will be the first time in cis history that a single university has won five consecutive national championships by both men and women in a single
sport. Meet finals begin at 5 p.m. Friday, Saturday and Sunday. For a complete schedule and details of other ubc Thunderbird events and results, visit
www.athletics.ubc.ca or call 604-UBC-BIRD. Richard Lam pic
Students seek to give tuition input
Vice-president, Students, expects to hold public forums
UBC   STUDENTS   ARE   asking  UBC
President Martha Piper to include
them in making decisions about
how tuition fee levels will be implemented at ubc.
Post-secondary institutions in
b.c. have been given responsibility
for determining their own tuition
fee levels, according to a recent
provincial government announcement that officially ended the
province's six-year tuition freeze.
In a recent letter to the president, the ubc Committee to Reduce Tuition requested a public
debate with students regarding
any increases.
Brian Sullivan, vice-president,
Students, advised the group that
discussions are already underway
with student government and a
number of public forums open to
all students are expected to be
held within the next two weeks.
b.c. has the lowest tuition fees
in Canada after Quebec, ubc is
considering raising tuitions to the
national average and to levels
comparable to peer institutions.
A portion — from 15 to 30 per
cent — of increased tuition fee revenues will be directed to student
financial support, he adds.
About 100 students and members
of cupe 2950 rallied around the Goddess of Democracy statue in sub plaza earlier this month, part of a province-wide day of protest.
"We believe the province has a
responsibility to ensure there is accessible education for all students,"
says Erfan Kazemi, Alma Mater
Society president, "ubc must first
look to remedy its own cost inefficiencies rather than passing it on
see Tuition, page 2
top prize
Killam Research Prizes
awarded to Arts and
Science researchers
efficient use of taxation and
ethical concerns surrounding social choice and variable population
are some ofthe problems that have
kept Economics Prof. Charles
Blackorby interested and involved
during a research career that spans
more than three decades.
Awarded this year's Jacob Biely
Faculty Research Prize, Blackorby
says he is both surprised and
pleased by the honour. Long regarded as ubc's premier research
award, the Biely prize is given for a
distinguished record of recently
accomplished published research.
"Prof. Blackorby joins a long list
of our best faculty with very impressive research accomplishments," says Indira Samarasekera,
vice-president, Research.
Blackorby specializes in welfare
economics, social choice, public finance and microeconomic theory.
He recently studied Canada's employment insurance (ei) program
which some economists have criticized as an inefficient mix of insurance and income redistribution.
His research suggested, however,
see Biely, page 2
Biely Prize-winner Blackorby
Young scholars put to test in media hot seat
Journalism, genetics students hone communications skills
By Michelle Cook staffwriter
at a recent news conference on
campus, genetics company Enhan-
ceMe Corp. announced plans to rid
the world of unwanted large noses
with a drug they've developed for
pregnant women that will prevent
their babies from growing genetically inherited big schnozzes.
The company's head scientist
and other representatives stumbled over several of the reporters'
questions, often giggling and
blushing in reply to queries about
how much the drug would cost,
what permission the company had
to test it and whether, if taken in
large doses, it could cause a nose to
disappear completely.
The big nose news, of course,
wasn't really news but one of three
announcements that ubc Medical
Genetics students dreamt up to
bait journalists-in-training in a series of mock news conferences organized by the School of Journalism
and the Centre for Applied Ethics.
The annual exercise is designed
to get students on both sides
thinking about the process used to
introduce serious scientific advances into public debate, says
Journalism Prof. Stephen Ward.
"I wanted to develop an exercise
in which students not only get to
practise basic journalism, but do it
see Media, page 2 I  UBC  REPORTS  |  FEBRUARY 21,  2002
Continued from page 1
to students through tuition increases. And any fee adjustment
must take into account financial
aid and quality indicators."
The rallying students presented
Sullivan with a petition directed at
the provincial government protesting increases in fees.
"The freeze has limited the
quality of education here at ubc in
a number of ways," says Sullivan.
"There are insufficient course and
lab offerings, class sizes are increasing, and classroom and laboratory facilities are under-resourced."
Student support services such
as academic advising, athletics
counselling, and library acquisitions have also been restricted by
the freeze, he adds.
Any tuition fee increase would
require approval by the ubc Board
of Governors.
It is anticipated a proposal will
be reviewed at the March board
University of British Columbia
The 2001-2002 Murrin Lectures
David Livingstone
Professor of Geography & Intellectual History
The Queen's University, Belfast
Science and Religion:
Re-mapping the Terrain
Monday March 11,4 p.m.
in Angus 110
The Battle
for Darwin's Soul
Tuesday March 12, 4 p.m.
in Scarfe 100
Continued from page l
that the structure of f.i is efficient.
President of the Canadian Economic Association in 2000-01, Blackorby says the brain drain has had a
devastating effect on the Canadian
economics research scene. He says
many colleagues have moved to the
u.s. and to Europe where he himself
is headed this summer to take up a
new faculty position at the University of Warwick.
The university has also announced recipients ofthe ubc Killam Research Prizes. The $5,000
prizes have been awarded annual
ly since 1986 to top campus researchers and are equally divided
between arts and sciences.
Recipients are: miranda burgess, English; brian copeland,
Economics; michael gerry, Chemistry; david green, Economics;
george mackie, Biochemistry and
Molecular Biology; william mohn,
Microbiology and Immunology; tae
oum, Commerce and Business Administration; gerald sandy, Classical, Near Eastern and Religious Studies; Patricia vertinsky, Educational Studies; ARIEL ZHITNITSKY,
Physics and Astronomy.
There were no nominations this
year for the Charles A. McDowell
Award for Excellence in Research.
Continued from page 1
in a demanding forum on topics
like science and business," Ward
says. "I also wanted to reach out
across campus and have them work
with other students, to get them
thinking about how we communicate important issues in society."
While the Genetics students
explore the ethical issues of their
work, the Journalism students
learn to probe scientific authori-
Ward has been organizing mock
newsers in collaboration with other faculties for three years. He first
partnered with Commerce Assoc.
Prof. Wayne Norman and his mba
students, then linked up with
Medical Genetics Assoc. Prof.
Michael Burgess, holder of the
chair in Biomedical Ethics.
Jehannine Austin, a first-year
Genetic Counselling master's degree student, found the experience
of being peppered with questions
valuable, if somewhat intimidating.
"As genetic counsellors, part of
our role is communicating genetic
issues to the public," Austin says. "I
think we all learnt that you have to
be well prepared and that if you
have something to hide it is a very
uncomfortable situation to be in."
First-year Master of Journalism
student Hayley Mills also found
the practice conferences valuable.
"Sometimes journalists have a
fear or dislike of scientists and vice
versa, and I think for this group
there will be less of a divide in our
real lives."
In future, Ward hopes to involve
other faculties in the mock newsers, and invite real broadcast and
print reporters with tv cameras
and tape recorders to participate.
ubc reports
Published monthly starting in
March by:
ubc Public Affairs Office
310 - 6251 Cecil Green Park Road
Vancouver BC, v6t izi.
Tel: 604-UBC-iNFO (604-822-4636)
Fax: 604-822-2684
Website: www.publicaffairs.ubc.ca
ubc Reports welcomes the submission of letters and opinion
pieces. Opinions and advertising
published in ubc Reports Ao not
necessarily reflect official university policy. Material may be
reprinted in whole or in part with
appropriate credit to ubc Reports.
Letters must be signed and
include an address and phone
number for verification. Please
limit letters, which may be edited
for length, style, and clarity, to 300
words. Deadline is 10 days before
publication date. Submit letters to
the ubc Public Affairs Office (address above); by fax to 822-2684;
or by e-mail to Janet.ansell@ubc.ca
Scott Macrae
(scott.macrae@u bc.ca)
Janet Ansell
(Janet. ansell@ ubc.ca)
Michelle Cook
(michelle.cook@u bc.ca)
Helen Lewis
(helen.lewis@u bc.ca)
Hilary Thomson
(hilary.thomson@u bc.ca)
Carol Price
(carol. price@ubc.ca)
theASI exchange
Your gateway to
infinite connections &
March 12, 2002
9:00 am - 5:30 pm
Enterprise Hall @ Plaza of Nations
Vancouver, BC
exchange research ideas • discover employment opportunities
seek research partnerships • connect with other academic researchers
listen to 13 innovative speakers * see what's new in BC's high-tech industry
expand your professional network • visit over 250 academic and industry displays
Berkowitz & Associates
Consulting Inc.
Statistical Consulting
research design • data analysis • sampling • forecasting
—-~—-~~    Jonathan Berkowitz, Ph.D    ^—
4160 Staulo Crescent, Vancouver, B.C., V6N 3S2
Office: (604) 263-1508 Fax: (604) 263-1708
■ it
Providing Plastic and Wax sections for the research community
Spurr RT. RLAT*
Kevin Gibbon   ART FIBMS
Phone   (604) 856-7370
gspurr^interchange. ubc.ca
E-mail  gibbowax@telus.net
j 2002 President's Service Award
for Excellence Nominations
The committee is seeking nominations of outstanding staff and
faculty who made distinguished contributions to the university.
Nomination forms can be found on-line at www.
external-affairs.ubc.ca/ceremonies/honours. Otherwise, call 604-
822-2484. Please mail nominations to: President's Service Award
for Excellence Committee, c/o Ceremonies Office, Second floor,
Ponderosa B, Campus Zone 2. UBC  REPORTS  |  FEBRUARY  21,  2002  |  3
Students team up for
inner city service project
Guelph, ubc students join to help community gardens
by Michelle Cook staffwriter
of their counterparts from the University of Guelph to the Downtown
Eastside to do some gardening this
week as part of an unusual exchange project designed to show
participants from both institutions that there's more to the community than its gritty reputation.
The ubc Learning Exchange -
University of Guelph Urban Agriculture Project is the first-ever exchange of its kind between two Canadian universities.
The goal of the five-day pilot
was to help students from various
academic disciplines see past
some of the common stereotypes
of the inner city by getting their
hands dirty, literally, doing community service work.
"Some portrayals have truth to
them but they tend to ignore the
strength and vitality that these
communities also have," says
Learning Exchange director Mar-
go Fryer. "We wanted students to
see the 'other' side of the Downtown Eastside."
To do that, the UBC-Guelph
group volunteered to help the
Strathcona Community Gardens
refurbish its compost system so
that it can help another group in
the community, the Quest Outreach Society, dispose of a large
portion of its waste. Quest, a large
food redistribution project, currently pays almost $10,000 a year
to dispose of its unusable food donations.
Through their efforts to support
Strathcona's composting operation,
the students were not only helping
Quest save money, but also contributing to efforts to create a larger,
more comprehensive composting
project in the neighbourhood.
Fryer brought back the idea for
the exchange from a meeting in
Antigonish, N.S. last May for Canadian universities introducing community service learning into their
When a Guelph University representative expressed interest in
bringing students to the Downtown Eastside, Fryer saw an opportunity for both schools to participate in educational activities
related to grassroots community
Community service learning incorporates community volunteer
activities into academic programs
so that students can make connections between theory and practice,
and enrich their academic learning
by seeing how it can be applied,
Fryer explains.
While the concept has been popular in the United States for some
time, Canadian universities have
only recently begun to adopt it.
"We're hoping that by generating interest in this kind of community-based learning, more faculty
members will integrate service volunteer opportunities into their
course work," Fryer says.
She hopes the ubc students will
be able to make a reciprocal visit to
Guelph and that this week's pilot
spurs ongoing community service
exchanges with other Canadian
universities as well as international institutions.
Other activities scheduled for
the exchange included a discussion with representatives from the
Vancouver Area Network of Drug
Users, a workshop on local community development and guided
tour ofthe ubc Farm.
The Learning Exchange is part
ofthe commitment to community
outreach found in Trek 2000, the
university's vision statement.
It offers ubc's resources and expertise to the Downtown Eastside
community, provides educational
opportunities to people who live
and work in the neighbourhood,
and gives ubc students first-hand
volunteer experience in community organizations.
Week to spotlight research
Range of arts, science research to be celebrated in March
the cosmic connections between art and astronomy will be
revealed in the first presentation of
ubc's Celebrate Research lecture
series to be held March 11 as part of
Research Awareness Week (raw)
March 9-15.
Jaymie Matthews, associate professor of Physics and Astronomy
and English Prof. Dennis Danielson will explore "The Arts and Science ofthe Cosmos" in a one-hour
lecture at 4 p.m. in Main Library's
Dodson Room, one of many events
being held on- and off-campus
during the week.
"This lecture series fits in well
with the spirit and purpose of research awareness week," says Indira
Samarasekera, vice-president, Research, who will host the series. "We
want to demonstrate the breadth
and excellence in research and scholarship across campus and stimulate
dialogue across disciplines."
Conveying abstract ideas is one
of the important connections between astronomy and literature,
says Matthews. In addition, concepts such as perspective and vanishing points, usually associated
with arts, are also used in astronomy to measure distance to star
Danielson edited the anthology
The Book ofthe Cosmos: Imagining
the Universe from Heraclitus to
Hawking. It was one of
Amazon.com's top 10 science
books for 2000.
Other raw activities include the
launch of a series of health policy
forums at ubc at Robson Square.
Roy Romanow, head ofthe National Royal Commission on Medicare
will present "Medicare, Then and
Now" at 12 noon on March 13 in an
event co-hosted by ubc's Continuing Studies Dept.
"University research helps to influence and inform different kinds
of policy locally, nationally and internationally," says Sid Katz, raw
organizer and ubc's executive director, Community Affairs. "We're
pleased to present this aspect of
research to the community."
The downtown campus is also
the site of a transportation public
symposium at 12 noon on March
11. Organized by the Faculty of
Commerce and Business Administration, a discussion moderated by
Commerce Dean Dan Muzyka features a panel of Lower Mainland
transportation experts.
University Killam Professors Zoology Prof. Peter Hochachka and
English Prof. William New will discuss their books at 12:30 p.m. in
Main Library's Dodson Room on
March 13, part of ubc Author's
Week which coincides with raw.
Hochachka has written Biochemical Adaptation which looks
at how animals survive in extreme
New has written two books published in 2001: A History of Canadian Literature and Stone/
Also at the library will be a
showcase of recent productions by
ubc filmmakers on Thursday,
March 14 from noon to 1 p.m.
A tour of ubc's Wine Research
Library, located in the basement of
the Food and Nutritional Sciences
Building, will be held March 15,
starting at noon.
Visitors will learn about wine
faults — errors in production that
yield distinctive odours — and will
be given an opportunity to sniff
out some faulty vintages.
A gala invitational event, Celebrate Research, will be held at the
Chan Centre for the Performing
Arts March 14. The evening honours the achievements of ubc's researchers.
For more information on raw
check the Web site at www.
study buddy ubc Thunderbirds pitcher Jeff Francis, a third-year Physics
student, gets down to work in the newly opened Chapman Learning
Commons in Main Library. A us major league prospect, Francis spent
midterm break, which ends tomorrow, with the Thunderbirds competing in
Arizona and California. Helen Lewis photo
Forums pool students
and alumni expertise
Exploring opportunities
goal of student forums
by Helen Lewis staffwriter
ubc students are seeing the
world beyond the classroom
thanks to new forums that link undergraduates with other students,
alumni and community-oriented
campus groups.
The Students Interconnected
(si) forums aim to help students
explore undergraduate choices by
creating a knowledge pool of experiences from the student body, says
si chair and co-founder Michael
"Many undergraduates want to
gain skills and learn about themselves through new experiences,
but it's a challenge to find the right
program. We're here as a network
for that, helping campus organizations and the students who want
to link with them."
At the new si student forums
and workshops, launched this year,
students share what they have
learned through overseas projects
as well as co-op education, exchange and summer enrichment
The most recent forum, "Empowering Communities," discussed community service issues
and opportunities. Students involved in advocacy, justice, health
care and environmental community service related their experiences
and answered questions.
"Students attending the forums
hear the personal experiences of
the panelists, so they can ask ques-
Students Interconnected (si) chair
and co-founder Michael Tsang (left),
si forum co-ordinator Bernice Chu
and si research and development
officer Angelique Schnerch.
tions and get a number of views at
once," says Tsang, a graduate of
ubc's Pharmacology Co-op program.
The si Web site (www.
howlingsheep.com) allows students to join the discussion after
the forum, posting questions to be
answered by students and alumni
with experience in the relevant
"For the students who get involved, it changes the way they
think about themselves, about
their education and the way they
see themselves in the world," Tsang
The forums are organized by si
with the Chapman Learning Commons, the Faculty of Science, Science Undergraduate Society, ams
Volunteer Services, Student Exchange, Science Co-op and the
Alumni Association. 4  |  UBC  REPORTS  |  FEBRUARY 21, 2002
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber
Choir. Chan Centre at 8pm. Admission $53/$43/$33; students and seniors $4o/$3o/$20. Call Ticketmaster
at 604-280-3311 or Chan Centre at
String Chamber Ensembles. Music
Recital Hall at 12 noon. Call 602-822-
Temporal Regulation of Insulin/iGF-i
Signaling And Metabolism In Aging
Of c. Elegans. Dr. Andrew Dillin, Biochemistry and Biophysics, u of California, San Francisco. irc#3 from 12
noon-ipm. Call 604-822-6968.
Orthopedic Grand Rounds Lecture
Current Concepts In Hip
Arthroplasty. Dr. David Ruch, Wake
Forest u. vgh, Eye Care Centre Aud.
from 7-8am. Call 604-875-4192.
Wednesday Concert Series
Jean Guy Boisvert, clarinet. Music
Recital Hall at 12 noon. Admission
$4. Call 604-822-5574.
Chemical And Biological
Engineering Seminar
Growth Of Methylotrophic Yeast In
Pulp Mill Condensate. Preston Hoy.
ChemEng 206 at 12 noon. Call
Essay Writing Workshop
Main Library, Dodson Room from
i2:30-3pm. Call 604-822-9564.
register visit www.welcome.to/
ubc_sgi or e-mail ritchiewong422@
hotmail.com. Call 604-822-4095.
Borealis String Quartet. Rena Sharon,
piano. Music Recital Hall at 8pm.
Admission $2o/$io. Call
Friday Grand Rounds Lecture
Evaluation Of Perinatal Outcomes
And Homebirth In b.c Patty Jansen,
Health Care and Epidemiology.
Mather 253 from 9-ioam. Call 604-
ubc Guitar Ensemble. Music Recital
Hall at 12 noon. Call 602-822-5574.
FEBRUARY    24    THROUGH     MARCH     9
Thematic Lecture Series
The Dilemma Of Alternative Dispute
Resolution In First Nations. Bruce
Miller. Green College at 5pm. Call
Refugee Speaker Series
Fifty Years OfThe 1951 Convention:
Accomplishments And Challenges.
Scott Busby, Director, Office of Policy
and Resource Planning, Bureau of
Population, Refugees and Migration,
us State Dept. St.John's College from
5-6:i5pm. Call 604-822-8781.
Member Speaker Series
From The Desiring Other To The
Desire OfThe Other: Kant, Sade And
LaCan On The Moral Subject. Alex
Harmsen. Green College at 7:45pm.
Call 604-822-1878.
Chemistry Phosphoral Transfer:
Chemistry, Fnzymology And
Evolution. Prof. Daniel Herschlag,
Biochemistry, Stanford u. Chemistry
B-250 from l2:45-i:45pm.
Refreshments at 12:30pm. Call 604-
Grandchild Of Empire: About Irony
Mainly In The Commonwealth.
William New. Frederic Wood from 3-
4:40pm. Call 604-822-9824.
Green College Speaker Series
The Critique Of Religious
Consciousness: The Philosophical
Foundations For An Interdisciplinary
Approach To Religion. Steve Lofts,
Philosopher, u of Western Ontario.
Green College at 5pm. Call 604-822-
VST Lecture Series
Paul's Contra-Imperial Gospel Of
Jesus Christ. Rev. Dr. Harry Maier.
vst Epiphany Chapel from 5:30-
7:30pm. Call 604-822-9815.
Poetic Persuasions. Christy Ann
Conlin; Kevin Chong. Green College
at 8pm. Call 604-822-1878.
Please recycle
Wednesday Lecture Series
Women And Immigration In
Germany. Ghodsi Hejazi, u of
Frankfurt. Centre for Women's
Studies and Gender Relations at lpm.
Refreshments. Call 604-822-9171.
Seminar OBST 506
Preterm Labour. Dr. Gerald
Marquette, b.c.'s Women's Hosp.
2N35 from 2-3pm. Call 604-875-3108.
The Walter S. Owen Lecture
Equality With A Difference: A
Comparison Of South African And
Canadian Constitutional Equality
Law. Margot Young. Curtis 101/102
from 5:30-6:3opm. Refreshments. Call
Senate Meeting
Regular Meeting ofthe Senate —
ubc's Academic Parliament. Curtis
102 from 7-g:3opm. Call
Agricultural Sciences
Noon-Hour Speaker Series
Great Plants For City Gardens. Judy
Newton. MacMillan 160 at 12 noon.
Call 604-822-1219.
Woodward Lecture Series
Economic Choices. Prof. Daniel
McFadden, u of California, Berkeley.
Buchanan A-202 from i2:30-i:3opm.
Call 604-822-4129.
The Legal Profession And Women's
Equality. Lynn Smith, judge. Curtis
157 from i2:30-2pm. To register visit
www.cfls.law.ubc.ca. Call
Physics Colloquium
Blast Wave Research Using
Animated Numerical Simulations.
Alex Van Netten, uvic. Hennings 201
at 4pm. Call 604-822-3853.
ICICS Distinguished Lecture Series
Reconfigurable Manufacturing
Systems. Galip Ulsoy, William Gray
Ford, u of Michigan, cicsr/cs 208
from 4-5:30pm. Call 604-822-6894.
Buddhism: A Living Philosophy, sgi-
Canada Organization, ubc sgi Club.
Buchanan B-216 from 6-7:30pm. To
Theatre Lecture
How To Do Things With Buzz Words:
Otherness In Polish Theatre In The
1990s. Prof. TamaraTrojanowska,
Slavic Languages and Literatures, u
of Toronto. Buchanan B-330 from 12
noon-ipm. Call 604-822-4060 or 604-
CRC Literature/Christianity
And Culture Lecture
Life As Program: Gregory of
Nazianzus' Song Of Himself And The
Role OfThe Bishop In Late Antique
Society.  Susanna Elm, u of
California, Berkeley; Neil b. McLynn,
Keio u, Tokyo, buto 599 from
i2noon-i:3opm. E-mail
mvessey@interchange.ubc.ca. Call
Occupational And
Environmental Hygiene Seminar
Reliable Measures Of Performance In
Nonstereotypical Tasks: Surgical
Training And Tool Design. Dr.
Anthony Hodgson, Mechanical
Engineering, ubc Hosp., Koerner
Pavilion G-279 from i2:3o-i:3opm.
Call 604-822-9861.
Friday Afternoon Tutorial Clinic
Main Library, Dodson Room from 3-
5pm. Call 604-822-9564.
Faculty Women's Club Meeting
Celebration of Spring: ubc Opera
Ensemble. Cecil Green at 7pm. Call
Vancouver Institute Lecture
The Burden Of Children's Pain. Dr.
Patrick McGrath, Psychology,
Psychiatry and Pediatrics, Dalhousie
u. irc#2 at 8:15pm. Call 604-822-
Pacific Spirit Concert
Katherine Chi, piano. Music Recital
Hall at 3pm. Call 602-822-5574.
Green College
Performing Arts Group
Green College Coffee House 3 at
8pm. Call 604-822-1878.
VST Lecture
Chalmers Institute: Peter Kaye
Continuing Education Event.
Michael Northcott, Ethicist. vst
6000 from 8:3oam-9:3opm. $127/$H4
team; $65 senior. To register visit
www.vst.edu. Call 604-822-9815.
Integrating Educational Technology
Into Post-Secondary Classrooms.
Kirsti Aho, Macromedia Corporation.
Main Library Dodson Room from 10-
11:30am. Call 604-822-9149 Call 604-
ubc Student Composers. Music
Recital Hall at 12 noon. Call 602-822-
Research Seminar
Towards Responsible Fisheries: A
Perspective From Within The fao Of
The United Nations. Kevern
Cochrane, Food and Agriculture
Organization, Rome. Green College
at 12 noon. Call 604-822-1878.
Green College Speaker Series
Identity On Trial: Grombrowicz,
Rosewica, Mrozek And The
Discourse Of Identity. Prof. Tamara
Trojanowska, Slavic Languages and
Literatures, u of Toronto. Green
College Coach House from 5-6:30pm.
Call 604-822-4060 or 604-822-5157.
Revising And Editing Workshop
Main Library Dodson Room from
i2:30-2pm. Call 602-822-9564.
Lectures in Modern Chemistry
New Applications Of Transition
Metal Catalysts In Organic
Chemistry. Gregory Fu,
mit. Chemistry B250 from 12:45-
1:45pm. Refreshments at 12:30pm.
Call 602-822-3341.
Green College Speaker Series
Costing The Earth: Valuing Global
Policy Alternatives And The Role Of
Learning Over Time. Tim Daniels.
Green College at 5pm. Call 604-822-
Orthopedic Grand Rounds Chief
Residents Rounds Lecture
tba. Drs. Michael Wilmind, Kostas
Panagiotopoulos, Laura Zeznik,
Robert Greenhow. vgh, Eye Care
Centre Aud. from 7-8am. Call 604-
Wednesday Concert Series
Babayaga String Quartet. Music
Recital Hall at 12 noon. Admission
$4. Call 604-822-5574.
Cecil H. and Ida Green Lecture
Treating Children With Chronic
Pain. irc#i at 12 noon. Call
Wednesday Lecture Series
Dilemmas And Contradictions:
Understanding The Under-
Representation Of Female Leaders.
Tin Tin Htun, u of Tsukuba, Japan.
Centre for Women's Studies and
Gender Relations at 1pm.
Refreshments. Call 604-822-9171.
Seminar OBST506
Regulation Of vegf-a Gene
Expression By Artificially Engineered
Zinc Finger Transcription Factors.
Dr. Peter Li, Sangame Biosciences
Inc. bc's Women's Hosp. 2N35 from
2-3pm. Call 604-875-3108.
School of Nursing Rounds Lecture
Exploring Chinese Immigrant
Mothers' Experiences Related To
Infant Feeding Choices.
ubc Hosp., Koerner Pavilion T-182
from 3-4pm. Call 604-822-7453.
Individual Interdisciplinary
Studies Graduate Program
The Ownership Of Indian Classical
Dance And Its Performance On The
Global Stage. Mandakranta Bose.
Green College at 5pm. Call 604-822-
Green College Fireside Chat
Becoming A Scientist Reluctantly.
Patrick McGrath, Psychology,
Pediatrics, Psychiatry and
Biomedical Engineering, Dalhousie
u. Green College at 7:30pm. Call
18th International Seating
Symposium. Hyatt Regency Hotel
from 8:3oam-5pm. To register visit
E-mail interprof@cehs.ubc.ca. Call
Agricultural Sciences
Noon-Hour Speaker Series
Agriculture Undergraduate Society
Service Award. MacMillan 160 at 12
noon. Call 604-822-1219.
ubc Jazz Ensemble 2. Music Recital
Hall at 12 noon. Call 602-822-5574.
The Impact Of Equality Analysis On
Labour Law. Patricia Hughes, Dean
of Law, u of Calgary. Curtis 157 from
i2:30-2pm. Call 602-822-6523.
Spirituality Unplugged. Anita Unruh,
PhD, Occupational Therapy,
Dalhousie u. ubc Hosp., Koerner
Pavilion r-130 from i-2pm. Call 604-
No Calendar
UBC Reports will no longer publish the Calendar as of
March when it changes from a biweekly to a monthly
publication. This will be the last UBC Reports Calendar.
Members of the campus community are welcome to
submit events information to Athletics and Recreation's
LiveAtuBC on-line calendar at www.liveat.ubc.ca.
Public Affairs is currently working with other campus
groups to consider improvements in how the
university's events listings can be accessed on-line.
Your comments on this change are welcome. Please
contact the editor by e-mail at janet.ansell@ubc.ca or by
mail to 310-6251 Cecil Green Park Rd., Vancouver, b.c.
v6t izi UBC  REPORTS  |  FEBRUARY  21,  2002  |  5
UBC Biotechnology
Laboratory Seminar
Regulation Of Neurotransmitter
Release By Presynaptic Calcium-
Activated Potassium Channels. Dr.
Zhao-Wen Wang, Anatomy and
Neurobiology, Washington u. irc#3
from 2-3pm. Call 602-822-6968.
Psychology Seminar
Measuring The Impossible Pain In
Children. Kenny Suedfeld Lounge at
4pm. Call 604-822-5675.
Physics Colloquium
Semiconductor Nanostructures For
Infared Devices, h.c. Liu, Institute
For Microstructural Sciences, nrc
Ottawa. Hennings 201 at 4pm. Call
Policy Change In Mexican Higher
Education: What Have We Learned
From Comparative Research. Rollin
Kent, Education, u of Puebla,
Mexico. Green College at 4:30pm.
Call 604-822-1878.
CRC Literature/Christianity And
Culture Lecture
In Search Of St. Theodore: Roads
Saints And Caves In Late Roman
Anatolia. Joel Walker, u of
Washington, buto 599 from 4:30-
6pm. E-mail mvessey@
interchange.ubc.ca. Call 604-822-
Opera Double Bill
Purcell And Puccini. Chan Centre at
8pm. Continues to March 10. Concert
at 3pm, Sunday. Admission $2o/$i4.
Call Ticketmaster at 604-280-3311 or
Chan Centre at 604-822-9197.
Friday Grand Rounds Lecture
Health Effects Of Salmon Farming.
William Bowie, Infectious Diseases.
Mather 253 from 9-ioam. Call 604-
ubc Chamber Strings. Music Recital
Hall at 12 noon. Call 602-822-5574.
The Grotesque Today: Notes Towards
A Taxonomy. Noel Carroll, Philosophy,
u of Wisconsin University Centre 307
at 12:30pm. Call 602-822-3292.
Occupational And Environmental
Hygiene Seminar
Fragrance Sensitivity In The
Workplace: A Qualitative
Sociological Analysis. Lynn Moffat,
Workers' Compensation Board of b.c.
ubc Hosp., Koerner Pavilion G-279
from i2:30-i:30pm. Call 604-822-
Tutorial Clinic
Main Library, Dodson Room from
3-5pm. Call 602-822-9564.
Earth And Ocean Sciences Seminar
Ocean Paleogeography Of
Northwestern Nevada And Controls
On The Northern Carlin Trend Gold
Deposits. Simon Haynes.
GeoSciences 330-A from 4-5pm. Call
VST Lecture
Honouring A Decade Of Women And
Spirituality Dialogues: Expressions
OfThe Divine Feminine, vst
Epiphany Chapel from 7-9:3opm. Call
Philosophy Colloquium
Noel Carroll, u of Wisconsin; Nancy
Sherman, u of Virginia; Jose-Lius
Bermudez, u of Stirling, Margaret
Schabas. Buchanan B Penthouse
from 9am-6pm. Admission $30.
Refreshments. To register visit
www.philosophy.ubc.ca. Call 604-
VST Research
Awareness Week Lecture
New Approaches To Treating
Infections. Prof. Bob Hancock,
Microbiology and Immunology.
mc#2 at 8:15pm. E-mail
Call 604-822-8443.
Participants Needed
Researchers at the Psychology Dept.
are looking for people ages 22-40 to
serve as "normal controls" for a study
on the recognition of facial
expressions. Eligible participants
will have no history of anxiety
disorders (such as phobias) and will
not be clinically depressed. After a
brief screening interview, participants will look at different facial
expressions on a computer screen
and will decide which expression is
being depicted. The study will take
up to 30 minutes to complete. All
participants will receive an honorarium of $10 for their participation.
If interested call 604-822-8025.
Participants Needed
Stressed Clerical Workers - we know
you're out there. We need your input
for our study. Sharing your story can
help make a difference and can earn
you a small gift. Call 604-822-9199.
Laser Hair Removal
Require volunteers for two laser hair
removal trials. Ifyou are interested,
please contact Dr. Jerry Shapiro the
ubc Division of Dermatology. E-mail
etan@vanhosp.bcca. Call
Morris And Helen Belkin
Satellite Art Gallery Exhibition
Andrea Fraser; Failure: An Exhibition
Of Nine Visual Artists Curated By
Seamus Kealy. 555 Hamilton Street.
Wednesday through Sunday, i2-5pm.
Call 604-822-2759.
UBC Research
Boys between seven and nine (with
or without adhd) and their mothers
are needed for a study. Mothers
receive $20 and children get a ubc t-
shirt. If interested, please call 604-
JT   \     Please
^■^P     recycle
The Institute of Asian Research is seeking applications from
within the University for the post of Director of the Centre for
Japanese Research. Applicants should hold academic-
appointments at ubc and have a demonstrated record of
research on Japan. The successful applicant will be expected to
take up the appointment on July 1, 2002.
The successful candidate will be expected to develop research
programs focusing on Japan, seek funding from external donors
for the programs ofthe Centre forjapanese Research, organize
conferences and seminars on the Centre's research interests and
projects, administer the budget of the Centre, and chair the
Centre's management committee. The Centre Director will be
expected to collaborate with the Director of the Institute of
Asian Research in developing inter-Centre and interdisciplinary
teaching and research initiatives. The Centre Director will also
serve on the Council ofthe Institute.
ubc hires on the basis of merit and is committed to employment
equity. We encourage all qualified persons to apply.
The appointment will be for a fixed term of three to five years.
The deadline for applications is March 31,2002. Applicants should
send a letter describing their interest in the position, a curriculum
vitae, and the names and postal and e-mail addresses of three
references to:
Pitman B. Potter, Director
Institute of Asian Research
ck. Choi Building, Room 251
1855 West Mall, ubc v6t 1Z2.
Tel: (604) 822-4688
Fax: (604) 822-5207
e-mail: potter@interchange.ubc.ca
gov.bc.ca/obc/about_the.html: march 10
For assistance with applications, call the Office ofthe
Vice-President, Research, at 604-822-0234.
West Coast Suites
at The University of British Columbia
Here is the perfect alternative for a stay in Vancouver. Surrounded by the
spectacular beauty ofthe UBC campus, our fully-equipped, quality suites
offer convenience and comfort for visiting lecturers, professors, family,
friends or anyone who wants to stay on Vancouver's west side. Close to
restaurants and recreation both on and off campus, and only 20 minutes
from downtown Vancouver, the West Coast Suites is a wonderful retreat from
which to visit friends or make your stay on business a pleasure.
Reservations   Tel 604 822 1000   Fax 604 822 1001
5961 Student Union Boulevard Vancouver   BC   V6T 2C9
[BBS] Conferences and
^P Accommodation
at The University of British Columbia
Open Year-Round
Convenient On-Cam pus Location
An Affordable,
Fully-Equipped Suite
Right on Campus
jver School of Theology on the UBC cjmpus   Phot
Stay, work and play
In our forest by the sea. We offer the best range of affordable
accommodation, meeting space and conference services in the
Lower Mainland. Come find out why.
5961 Student Union Boulevard
Vancouver   BC   V6T 2C9
Tel 604 822 1000
Fax 604 822 1001
Croup Sales and
Conference Services
Tel 604 822 1060
Fax 604 822 1069
|yB£| Conferences and
'1IP' Accommodation
at The University of British Columbia
Powerful, Provocative, and Disturbing
Scars of Wai
The Impact of Warfare on Modem CN
Scars of War
The Impact of Warfare
on Modern China
New in pb!
0-7748-0841-1 • $29.95 pb
Edited by Diana Lary
and Stephen MacKinnon
These essays make concrete the
abstractly evoked "patriotic"
sacrifice of millions of Chinese
people, offering tough history as
an antidote to the easy oblivion
of official memory and underscoring the deep human and
social scars of war.
- Carol Cluck, Columbia University
Diana Lary, Professor of History and Director, Centre for Chinese Research, UBC
Stephen MacKinnon, Professor of History, Arizona State University
Available at UBC Bookstore or contact Raincoast Books
at T: 1-800-561-8583 or custserv@raincoast.com
www. ubcpress. ca/militaryhistory 6  |  UBC  REPORTS  |  FEBRUARY 21,  2002
Nominate a scientist
The Science Council of b.c. is accepting nominations for its 2002
awards program.
This year's B.C. Science and
Technology Award winners will be
recognized in nine categories: New
Frontiers in Research; Solutions
through Research; Business and
Education Partnerships; Young Innovator; Technology Entrepreneurship; Industrial Innovation;
Science and Technology Champion; Career Achievement; and Science Communication.
Deadline for nominations is
March 29. Nomination forms are
available from the council at Suite
400, 4710 Kingsway, Burnaby, b.c.
V5H 4M2.
For more information on the
awards program call 604-438-2752.
Nominate an alumni
The ubc Alumni Association is
seeking nominations for the 2002
Achievement Awards.
The awards honour ubc graduates and members of the campus
community who have distinguished themselves or who show
extraordinary promise.
Previous winners include qlt
PhotoTherapeutics president and
ceo Dr. Julia Levy and author
Pierre Berton.
Categories include the Student
Award, Outstanding Young Alumnus Award, Honorary Alumnus
Award, Volunteer Leadership
Award, Alumni Award for Research, Faculty Citation Community Service Award and Lifetime
Achievement Award.
For awards criteria and nomination forms, call 604-822-8923 or
nominate on-line at www.alumni.
ubc.ca. Deadline for the nominations is March 15.
No classifieds.
UBC Reports will no longer publish classified ads as of March
when it changes from a biweekly to a monthly publication.
The last UBC Reports classifieds appear in this issue.
Your comments on this change are welcome. Please contact
the editor by e-mail at janet.ansell@ubc.ca or by mail to 310-
6251 Cecil Green Park Rd., Vancouver, b.c. v6t izi
for publication-quality images,
vibrant full colour brochures,
proposals, flyers, and posters.
Room B32, Woodward IRC
2194 Health Sciences Mall
Vancouver, B.C., V6T-1Z3
Tel: (604) 822-5561
Fax: (604) 822-2004
e-mail: mediagrp@interchange.ubc.ca
Basement of
the Woodward
IRC Building
HOUSE A perfect spot to reserve accommodation for guest
lecturers or other university members who visit throughout the
year. Close to ubc and other Vancouver attractions, a tasteful representation of our city and of
ubc. 4103 W. 10th Ave., Vancouver, bc, V6R 2H2. Call or fax
Elegant accommodation in Point
Grey area. Minutes to ubc. On
main bus routes. Close to shops
and restaurants. Includes TV, tea
and coffee making, private
phone/fridge. Weekly rates avail.
Call 604-222-3461. Fax
HOUSE Five suites avail, for
academic visitors to ubc only.
Guests dine with residents and
enjoy college life. Daily rate $60
plus $i4/day for meals Sun-Thurs.
Call 604-822-8660 for more information and availability.
GUEST ROOMS Private rooms
on campus forvisitors to ubc on
academic business. Private bath,
double bed, telephone, tv, fridge,
in-room coffee. Dinner five days
per week. Breakfast seven days
per week. Competitive rates. Call
for information and availability
University Centre. Residence
offering superior hotel or kitchenette style rooms and suites. All
rooms have private bath, queen
bed, voice mail, cable tv and
Internet-linked PC. Beautiful view
of sea and mountains. For rates
and reservations www.pwias.
ubc.ca. Call 604-822-4782.
CAMILLA HOUSE in Kitsilano
area, furnished suites or rooms
avail. Kitchen facilities, cable TV,
telephone. Close to main bus
routes, shopping and dining.
Weekly and monthly rates avail.
www.vancouver-bb.com. Call
RETREAT Spacious three br
home. Five min. walk from Galleon Beach. Overlooking beautiful
pond, natural setting. All amen.
Cozy up to a brand new airtight
wood stove. Reasonable rates.
Visit www.hornbyisland.net/
purplefee/ or call 604-327-5735.
TRIUMF HOUSE Guest house
with homey, comfortable environment for visitors to ubc and hospital. Located near the hospital.
Rates $40-$8o/night and weekly
rates. E-mail housing@triumf.ca
or call 604-222-1062.
STUDIO Separate kitchen, lots
of closet space. Bright southern
exposure, steps from transportation and shopping. Phone, TV,
vcr, stereo. Sept. 2002 -June
2003. Six month minimum. $900/
mo (all incl.). E-mail cpfb2@
yahoo.ca or call 604-732-9016.
two-level City home at West Mall
and Thunderbird available to full
time, permanent faculty/staff,  fp,
five appliances, 1,000 sq. ft., $1,420/
mo. Email ubc Properties Trust at
oberhoff@interchange. ubc.ca.
BR AND OFFICE March 1. Commercial Drive area. Fully furnished,
w/d, microwave, tv/vcr. Quiet
house, Broadway Express bus to ubc.
No pets. $i,350/mo. incl. utilities.
Call 604-255-7735 or e-mail
n.haggan@ fisheries, ubc.ca.
chalet on idyllic Mayne Island (Gulf
Islands). Furnished, all appliances,
w/w carpets, three br, two bathrooms, Jacuzzi, fp, tv, rumpus room,
lease, references $650/mo. Walk to
ferry. See portfolio or view by appt.
Call 604-261-4171.
VACATION Central Paris, 1 br apt.
Fully furn. Close to Paris. Close to
Avignon, Provence, 2 br house. Accommodates 6. Call 704-738-1876. E-
mail iroland@axion.net.
KITS Furn. house. 3 br, 2 bath. August, September, October, November. Garden. Close to school,
shopping, beach. $i,40o/mo. Call
704-738-1876. E-mail iroland@
KITSILANO Furnished one BR,
two-level apt. with fp and balcony.
Close to 4th Avenue shops, bus,
beach, Granville Island, Fifth Avenue
Cinemas. May to September $1,100/
mo. including util. Call 604-734-9737.
in Point Grey with mature female.
Prefer male working professional or
mature student. Large br with
ensuite in three storey deluxe duplex.
2,000 sq. ft. w/d, dw, fp, Shaw
Internet, three balconies, secure
parking, alarm system.  $i,ooo/mo
plus half hydro.  Call 604-617-6245.
Bed And Breakfast
Walk to ubc along the ocean. Quiet
exclusive neighbourhood. Near buses
and restaurants. Comfortable rooms
with tv and private bath. Full breakfast. Reasonable rates, n/s only
please. Web site www.bbcanada.
com/locarnobeach. Call
United Way
of the Lower Mainland
WANTED TO RENT two to three
BR in Dunbar for April, May and June
2002.  $i,700/mo or under for nonsmoking ubc professor, wife and
child.  Call 604-224-1194 or Email
WANTED TO RENT long-term
one to two br suite in U. Hill Catchment Area (West of Blanca, College
Highroad and Tasmania Crescent) by
ma student/working mother and
bright 13-year-old daughter before
June 15, 2002. Call 604-879-5825 or
COUPLE returning from out of
country travel desire to house-sit or
sublet apartment or home for six
months from June through December.  E-mail hughesir@hotmail.com
FACULTY AND STAFF VOLLEYBALL Play a friendly game of
volleyball on Wednesdays and Fridays from 12 noon-ipm in the
Osborne Gym (next to hockey rink)
this term.  Please feel free to drop in
or e-mail Jack atjchow@chem.
ubc.ca or call 602-822-3200.
Retirement income and financial
planning. Edwin Jackson, Certified
Financial Planner. Ascot Financial
Services Limited. Investments, life
insurance, annuities, know-how. Call
guarantee. 5 day/40 hr. tesol
teacher certification course (or by
correspondence).  Future course
dates: May 15-19; Jul. 10-14; Sept. 4-8;
Oct. 30-Nov. 3; Dec. 18-22/02. Web
www.canadianglobal.net. free information package, (888) 270-2941.
Located in the University Village,
#207 - 5728 University Blvd. Dr. Chris
Hodgson (physician), for appointment call 604-222-2273 (222-CARE).
Dr. Charles Borton (dentist), please
call 604-838-6684 (604-83-TOOTH).
CERTIFIED ARBORIST available for quality tree service. Three
years experience in all aspects of tree
care. For more information, visit
www.treeworks.ca or call 604-662-
3678 for a free estimate.
editor (PhD) offers editing, shaping,
proofreading: scholarly papers, articles, journals, books, proceedings,
websites. 20 yrs. experience, most
subjects. Touching-up minor English
problems a specialty. Hourly rate,
prompt. Course work not accepted.
E-mail dharrison@direct.ca. UBC  REPORTS
FEBRUARY  21,  2002  |  7
Exchange pairs design and
Wood Processing students
Learning combines art, science of working with wood
although blessed with some of
the world's best timber, Canada
has a long way to go to catch up to
countries like Sweden when it
comes to wood furniture design
and manufacturing. But as the old
saying goes, every great journey
begins with one small step.
ubc and the Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design have taken
that first step with an exchange
program that has students from
the Faculty of Forestry's Wood
Products Processing Program enrolled in an industrial design class
at Emily Carr, while Emily Carr students are enrolled in a specialized
Wood Science class at ubc.
The exchange, inaugurated this
term, is designed to assist students
to not only design attractive and
functional wood products, but
ones that are easily replicable and
can therefore be mass produced.
"When we look at our competition around the world, we recognize that our natural resources are
superior in many ways, but our human resources need to be further
developed," says Wood Science Assoc. Prof. Simon Ellis, director of
Undergraduate Programs. "We
have to get further ahead in designing new products and efficient
manufacturing processes in making those products."
According to Ellis, the two institutions initiated discussions about
sharing teaching expertise some
three years ago, but eventually concluded an exchange of students was
preferable over an exchange of faculty to immerse students more
thoroughly in a related, but distinctly different industry culture.
Currently, 12 senior students
from ubc attend a weekly three-
hour class on the basics of indus-
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trial design at Emily Carr. Twenty-
five Emily Carr students attend a
weekly course at ubc designed
specifically for them, that focuses
on wood material properties and
manufacturing processes.
The Wood Products Processing
Program, introduced in 1995, emphasizes engineering concepts,
business, communication and
problem-solving skills in order to
produce graduates capable of
managing a wood products manufacturing facility.
Reward yourself with excellent eye health.
Life is worth seeing!
1(©5> Dunbar Eyecare
Dr. Caroline Kriekenbeek
#2 - 3554 West 41st Ave. Vancouver, B.C.
Tel: 604.263.8874
(just minutes away from ubc)
154,000,000 reasons
to change our logo
The World Wide Web provides UBC with the fastest,
most convenient and most cost-effective way of
communicating with the 154 million Internet users
spread across 242 Internet national domain locations.
Between November 2000 and October 2001 there
were 8.23 million visits to our website www.ubc.ca.
Getting your company or product recognized worldwide
on the Web is a challenge, and that's why we have
developed a simpler, more universally recognizable logo.
Our new logo is for use on the web, in advertisements,
brochures, stationery, garments, and signs-
all working together to present a strong,
consistent image to the world.
To obtain the new logo please visit
Vancouver's #1 Westside Realtor in 2000
Over 100 Homes Sold in the Past Year
Your UBC and
Hampton Place
RE/MAX Real Estate Services
*Based on # of homes sold through MLS (excl
Honour Roll
Sally Thorne has been named director of ubc's School of Nursing
for a five-year term.
An alumna, Thorne has been a
faculty member since 1983. Her
research interests focus on patients' experiences within existing health service delivery systems, with a particular focus on
health-care communication as it
affects those with cancer and
chronic disease.
Former associate director for
graduate programs and research
at the school, she has taught a variety of graduate courses that explore applying conceptual
knowledge to clinical nursing
practice, critical thinking, nursing theory, and the philosophy of
Nursing director Prof. Sally Thorne
nursing science.
In 2001 she was awarded ubc's
Killam Teaching Prize for Applied Science.
Rrtlriag WHfeki 5Jfars?
Don Proteau
Senior Financial
Planning Advisor
Frank Danielson
111      CFP
senior Financial
Planning Advisor
♦ Complimentary consultations available for UBC Faculty and Staff ♦
♦ Retirement and Estate planning ♦
♦ UBC pension expertise ♦
♦ References available ♦
"/ am completely satisfied with the service 1 am receiving from Don."
M. Dale Kinkadc, Professor Emeritus of Linguistics, UBC
"Frank and Don made me feel very comfortable with their advice and long range
planning. Their knowledge of the faculty pension plan is also a plus for UBC
Dr. ]. H. McNeill, Professor, Pharmaceutical Sciences. UBC
Call or e-mail to be put on our campus seminar invitation list!
^s_ 604-687-7526
4p| Assante
The Assante symbol is a registered trademark of Assante Corporation, used under license.
© 2000 Assante Financial Management Ltd. Alt rights reserved
NEXT SEMINAR: Investment Strategies to
Complement Your Faculty Pension Plan
Thursday March 14, 12:30 - 1:30 p.m.
Sage Bistro
*Attendance is limited to 30 guests. Please call
604-638-0335 to register.
The print version of UBC Reports will move to monthly
publication for the entire university community in March.
An electronic UBC Reports will be distributed by e-mail
more frequently.
To     receive    the    electronic     UBC    Reports
Your comments on this change are welcome. Please
contact the editor by e-mail at janet.ansell@ubc.ca or by
mail to 310-6251 Cecil Green Park Rd., Vancouver, b.c.
v6t izi 8  |  UBC REPORTS  |  FEBRUARY 2 1, 2002
This week's provincial budget is
based on unduly pessimistic
economic forecasts, argues
ubc expert
B.C.'s public spending cuts: fiscal necessity?
Prof.Jon Kesselman Economics
THE       B.C.       GOVERNMENT       has
launched the most sweeping cuts
to spending and public services in
the province's history. In their
words, they "had no choice." Without major program cuts and restructuring, B.c.'s budget was headed toward "unsustainable" deficits.
The government's policy choices
have been guided by the dire findings of its Fiscal Review Panel in
mid-2001. The panel forecast b.c
deficits growing to $3.8 billion in
2003/04, before reflecting the
personal and business tax cuts.
Adding those tax impacts raises the
forecast deficit above $6 billion, an
unprecedented figure for any province.
The panel's forecasts relied on
highly pessimistic assumptions.
They assumed that revenue would
grow only 1.6 per cent per year, far
below the five-plus per cent rate
during the ndp administration.
They assumed that public spending would grow at an annual rate
of 5.6 per cent, more than double
the 2.3 per cent rate in the previous
five years. And the panel provided
a large $1.25 billion "forecast allowance" against the risk that the figures would come in even worse.
By being very conservative in its
assumptions, the panel obtained
fiscal forecasts that support a conservative move toward smaller
government. (The panel asserted
that "tax increases are clearly not
an option.") Unfortunately, those
who will pay most dearly for the
policies resulting from a massive
deficit forecast are lower-income
groups most dependent on public
programs and services.
If one takes more realistic assumptions about economic and
revenue growth, the fiscal outlook
is far less daunting. Then, a combination of moderate spending restraint and a new revenue source
could resolve the structural deficit
within several years.
Spurring the economy's growth
rate is fundamentally more important than rapidly eliminating the
province's deficit. Faster economic
growth also advances fiscal sustainability, both because it raises
the rate of revenue growth and reduces the relative burden of outstanding debt. Just as faster-growing businesses can comfortably
handle larger debt, so can faster-
growing economies.
There is a risk of confusing policies that augment economic
growth with those that address fiscal balance. In some cases they are
similar, while in others they may
differ. For example, cutting certain
taxes — such as those on business
investment and skilled workers —
may augment economic growth,
but it will worsen the budgetary
The b.c. government has legislated a 2004/05 target for balancing the budget. Given its severe
cuts on the spending side, more
rapid revenue growth than forecast could put the province into
surplus in 2004/05. How then
would the government justify to
disadvantaged groups their hardships from program cuts that had
proven, in the end, to be avoidable?
If the economy is even weaker
than forecast, that is all the more
reason to maintain social benefits
and protections for vulnerable
members of society. Moreover, if
the b.c economy cannot grow significantly faster with new "business-friendly" policies than it did
under the ndp, that would be reason to rethink the very basis of
those policies.
The policy challenge is to find
revenue and spending measures
that augment both economic
growth and fiscal sustainability
while also satisfying social criteria.
We need to devise a feasible alternative policy course that would
better insulate low-income and
vulnerable groups from impacts of
the fiscal adjustments.
Adding one or two years to the
official target for budgetary balance would relieve the current fiscal constraints. It would cause
B.c.'s ratio of public debt to gdp to
rise to a higher peak before stabilizing, but that should be bearable
for public finances, b.c. is now tied
for second place among provinces
for the lowest debt-GDP ratio, and
servicing the interest cost on public debt takes less than eight cents
out of each revenue dollar.
Revenue measures also need to
be considered. If the funds can be
derived in a way that does not
harm economic growth, or even
better in a way that promotes
growth, that should be an uncon
tested choice. Such tax increases
would not undermine the growth-
promoting intent of the tax cuts
already undertaken.
One major untapped revenue
source in b.c is a general payroll tax,
a type that is benign for economic
growth. Payroll taxes are used by four
other provinces; Ontario instituted a
two per cent payroll-based "employer health tax" in 1990 to replace
Medicare premiums. Applying that
rate to the largest 10 per cent of employers in b.c would generate $1.1
billion annually.
Alternatively, b.c.'s corporate income tax could be replaced with a
business transfer tax that included
labour costs in its base. It would
allow full deductions for capital
outlays and make b.c the most attractive province for investment.
At a rate of just four per cent—half
the eight per cent corporate rate
that Alberta and Ontario are targeting and far below b.c.'s current
13.5 per cent — this tax would generate an extra $1 billion.
With the proposed fiscal strategies, b.c could pursue a less severely restrained spending path than
the current freeze on health care
and education spending and 25 per
cent cuts in all other areas. Public
spending could rise at 2.5 per cent
annually, approaching inflation
plus population growth, b.c. could
avoid extreme cuts such as those
impacting society's most vulnerable members — people needing legal aid, low-income seniors, children at risk, and the chronically ill.
b.c.'s current policy course ig
nores another important dimension. Policies that increase inequality, heighten union militancy,
rend social cohesion, and raise the
spectre of future policy reversals
serve to depress the attractions of
b.c for business investment. Moderated fiscal policies could avoid
this risk to the province's economic future.
Rather than pursuing the imperatives of its Fiscal Review Panel's overly cautious deficit forecasts, the b.c. government would
do better to heed the panel's further advice:
"Based on recent experience in
other Canadian provinces, we are
concerned that cost cutting in
government often comes at the expense of those groups in our society that can least afford it or by lowering standards designed to protect the environment and public
health and safety. We do not believe this should be or has to be the
case in British Columbia."
Economics Prof. Jonathan
Kesselman is director ofthe ubc
Centre for Research on Economic
and Social Policy. He specializes in
public finance and taxation
policies. The full study from which
this article draws is available at
www. arts. ubc. ca/cresp.
ubc Reports welcomes the
submission of opinion pieces from
members ofthe campus community.
E-mail the editor at janet.ansell


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