Clubby and ‘disturbing’ citation behavior by researchers in Italy has surged

first_imgItaly 20222426283032% Clubby and ‘disturbing’ citation behavior by researchers in Italy has surged The rate at which scientists in Italy cite themselves and their compatriots is rising faster than in 10 other developed countries, according to a new study. The surge in Italy’s clubby citation behavior is likely the result of a 2010 law requiring productivity standards for academic recruitment or promotion, the study authors say.The findings are a cautionary tale for research administrators who rely too much on citation metrics in allocating resources and making decisions on career advancement, says study author Giuseppe De Nicolao, an engineer at the University of Pavia in Italy. Linking professional advancement to citation indicators can prod scientists into unintended behaviors and make the metrics unreliable, he says.The findings are “disturbing,” says Ludo Waltman, a bibliometric expert at Leiden University in the Netherlands who was not involved in the study. To limit questionable citation practices, Waltman says, the Italian evaluation system should exclude self-citations and consider factors such as a researcher’s experience and activities in addition to citation counts.Sign up for our daily newsletterGet more great content like this delivered right to you!Country *AfghanistanAland IslandsAlbaniaAlgeriaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua and BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBolivia, Plurinational State ofBonaire, Sint Eustatius and SabaBosnia and HerzegovinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic of theCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D’IvoireCroatiaCubaCuraçaoCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuatemalaGuernseyGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard Island and Mcdonald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran, Islamic Republic ofIraqIrelandIsle of ManIsraelItalyJamaicaJapanJerseyJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People’s Republic ofKorea, Republic ofKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People’s Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacaoMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic ofMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMoldova, Republic ofMonacoMongoliaMontenegroMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorwayOmanPakistanPalestinianPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRWANDASaint Barthélemy Saint Helena, Ascension and Tristan da CunhaSaint Kitts and NevisSaint LuciaSaint Martin (French part)Saint Pierre and MiquelonSaint Vincent and the GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome and PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSerbiaSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSint Maarten (Dutch part)SlovakiaSloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia and the South Sandwich IslandsSouth SudanSpainSri LankaSudanSurinameSvalbard and Jan MayenSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwanTajikistanTanzania, United Republic ofThailandTimor-LesteTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad and TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks and Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuela, Bolivarian Republic ofVietnamVirgin Islands, BritishWallis and FutunaWestern SaharaYemenZambiaZimbabweI also wish to receive emails from AAAS/Science and Science advertisers, including information on products, services and special offers which may include but are not limited to news, careers information & upcoming events.Required fields are included by an asterisk(*) After the 2010 law was passed, Italy began to regulate academic recruitment and promotion using indicators such as citation counts. It was intended to address concerns about nepotism and a lack of meritocracy.Under the policy, academics can’t seek a job or a promotion as an associate or full professor unless they meet at least two of three indicators of research productivity. In fields such as medicine and natural sciences, these indicators include the number of publications, the number of citations received, and h-index—a combined measure of productivity and citation impact. 2010 2008 Mark Airs/Getty Images FranceInwardness 2014center_img United Kingdom 2016 Japan Graphic: J. Brainard/Science; Data: A. Baccine et al.; PLOS ONE 2012 By Giorgia GuglielmiSep. 11, 2019 , 2:00 PM Citations turn inward Compared with other countries, Italy saw a faster rise in “inwardness,” the percentage of citations to a country’s scientific articles that came from authors in the same country. Previous studies have found that the 2010 policy induced a rise in self-citations. However, those studies didn’t look at the proportion of each country’s publications cited by other scholars within the same country, says Alberto Baccini, a scientometrics expert at the University of Siena in Italy. These intranational citations could reveal “citation clubs,” a subtle form of manipulation in which groups of scientists cite each other to boost their citation scores, Baccini says.So Baccini, De Nicolao, and their team set out to develop an indicator of inwardness, which measures both self-referential and intranational citations. The researchers scoured Elsevier’s Scopus database, one of the world’s largest for research literature, for citation counts between 2000 and 2016 for researchers in the G-10, a group of 11 developed countries. To calculate a nation’s inwardness, the team counted citations by a country’s authors to papers authored in that country and divided this figure by the total number of citations accrued by the country.All of the nations showed modest rises in inwardness over time, which can be explained, paradoxically, by a growth in international collaborations. These expand the number of papers from participating countries that could be cited. Take, for example, a paper co-authored by research collaborators in Italy and France: Any citation to this paper from an Italian- or French-authored publication will count as an intranational citation for both Italy and France.Beginning in 2010, however, Italy’s inwardness started to increase rapidly, surpassing France, Japan, and the United Kingdom, the researchers found. The surge could not be attributed to collaborations, because Italy’s rate of growth for international collaborations between 2000 and 2016 was anemic compared with other nations. By 2016, about 31% of the Italy’s citations came from authors within its borders—more than any other country except the United States, a research powerhouse where many intranational citations are expected.Because the trends changed after the introduction of the 2010 policy, it’s likely that authors in Italy adopted opportunistic behaviors, including massively citing their own work and that of colleagues, to reach their country’s policy targets, the researchers report today in PLOS ONE.Marco Seeber, a science policy researcher at the University of Ghent in Belgium, says the growth in Italy’s inwardness is “striking.” In March, Seeber investigated the country’s use of citation metrics and found substantial increases in self-citations after the 2010 policy. “The policy was motivated by worthy intentions,” he says. “But bibliometric indicators should be used to inform rather than determine evaluations.”Seeber says it’s unclear how much of Italy’s inwardness is from self-citation versus citation clubs. To uncover these clubs, one would need to examine individual papers to discriminate legitimate from bogus citations, he says.John Ioannidis, a physician-scientist at Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, suspects citation clubs are behind Italy’s trend. Ioannidis, who created a database that revealed hundreds of extreme self-citing researchers, says the new study provides yet another example of how metrics can be misused. He notes that self-citations are necessary if a study builds on previous work by the authors or their colleagues. “But if someone has amassed more than half of their citations from themselves or their co-authors, that’s pretty weird,” he says. “You have to take a closer look.”last_img read more

Season over for Napoli’s Malcuit

first_img Watch Serie A live in the UK on Premier Sports for just £11.99 per month including live LaLiga, Eredivisie, Scottish Cup Football and more. Visit: https://subscribe.premiersports.tv/ Kévin Malcuit’s season is over after the Napoli defender damaged knee ligaments during the 1-1 draw with SPAL on Sunday. It was confirmed on Monday that Malcuit had injured both the ACL and medial meniscus in his right knee against SPAL. The Frenchman, who left the field in tears, will undergo surgery tomorrow and is not expected to play again for Napoli this season. He becomes the fourth defensive casualty for Carlo Ancelotti’s side, with Mario Rui, Nikola Maksimovic and Elseid Hysaj also out. Consequently, Ancelotti will have to turn back to Faouzi Ghoulam, who has fallen out of favour in recent weeks.last_img read more

Saulong plan: Body attack

first_imgAccording to head trainer Joven Jimenez, who trains both Saulong and Ancajas at their Survival Camp in Brgy. Ramirez, Magallanes in Cavite, there are loopholes in Iwasa’s defense which they intend to pounce on.“He (Saulong) must cut the ring and fight at close range to negate Iwasa’s height and reach advantage,” Jimenez said in Filipino. “He will target the body.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSBoxers Pacquiao, Petecio torchbearers for SEA Games openingWith Iwata’s reputation as a stylist, Jimenez expects him to move a lot and avoid a slugfest despite being the heavier puncher based on record, 16 knockouts in 24 wins and two losses.Saulong, who hails from Occidental Mindoro and resides in Santa Rosa, Laguna, totes a 21-2-1 slate with eight KOs and is ready to go the full 12 rounds. BeautyMNL open its first mall pop-up packed with freebies, discounts, and other exclusives Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Regatta cup charts different course PH military to look into China’s possible security threat to power grid SEA Games: PH still winless in netball after loss to Thais MOST READ ‘We cannot afford to fail’ as SEA Games host – Duterte Ernesto Saulong hopes to follow Jerwin Ancajas’ path to success when he challenges Ryosuke Iwasa for the International Boxing Federation junior featherweight crown at Ryogoku Kokugikan in Tokyo on March 1.His morale boosted by the fourth successful IBF junior bantamweight title defense of stable mate Ancajas in Corpus Christi, Texas, on Feb. 4, Saulong said the fight plan is up for execution against the southpaw Japanese champion.ADVERTISEMENT The 28-year-old Saulong will be accompanied by Jimenez and his manager, engineer-businessman Ariel Araja, when he leaves for Tokyo this Sunday. —ROY LUARCASports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games View comments Ethel Booba on hotel’s clarification that ‘kikiam’ is ‘chicken sausage’: ‘Kung di pa pansinin, baka isipin nila ok lang’ ‘A complete lie:’ Drilon refutes ‘blabbermouth’ Salo’s claims Judiciary Committee set to take over Trump impeachment probe Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIES last_img read more

World Cup: Rahat Ali replaces injured Junaid in Pakistan squad

first_imgRahat Ali celebrates after dismissing South Africa’s Hashim Amla in a Test match.Pakistan have called up tall left-arm paceman Rahat Ali to replace the injured Junaid Khan in their World Cup squad.Rahat, 26, who has been a regular in the Test team since 2012 having taken 31 wickets in 11 matches, has played just a single one-day international way back in 2012 in Sri Lanka without taking a wicket.”Rahat has been included in the World Cup squad on the recommendation of touring chief selector Moin Khan,” a Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) official said on Thursday.The official said the PCB had already sent a request to the technical committee of the International Cricket Council (ICC) for the replacement since Junaid was declared unfit for the tournament that begins on February 14 in New Zealand and Australia.Junaid, who has been a leading performer for his country in recent times, missed out on the World Cup after picking up a hamstring injury during training on the eve of the team’s departure for New Zealand late last month.Junaid was named in Pakistan’s squad last month after he showed a remarkable return to form after recovering from a knee injury that kept him out for nearly four months.The PCB official said that Bilawal Bhatti, who was sent as a replacement for the series in New Zealand after the injury to Junaid, would be returning home.Bilawal had a nightmarish match against New Zealand this week in the second one-dayer in which he conceded 93 runs.advertisementPakistan are already without their seasoned offspinner Saeed Ajmal for the World Cup after he was suspended from bowling by the ICC last September for an illegal action.last_img read more

SPORT-DAVIS-PAES 2 LAST

first_img“We are all ready. The elements (weather conditions) is “We are all ready. The elements (weather conditions) is part of professional tennis and specially on this surface you have to be ready to adjust and acclimatise to the conditions,” Paes said. The 21-year-old Ram Kumar, who will make his Davis Cup debut for the country, said he is excited about taking the court first. “Thats what we wanted, I am looking forward to the tie,” he said. Asked if the rain can change the equations, Indias non-playing captain Anand Amritraj said, “It was supposed to rain in last few days, but it has started now. We were lucky to get as much practice as we had. Now today, of course, it is a complete washout. “We hope we can start tomorrow, but it looks pretty bad. I am hoping we gets this tie done by Sunday”. Rohan Bopanna, who will pair with Paes for the doubles match scheduled to be played on Saturday against the pair of Hong Chung and Yunseong Chung, said the hosts are not taking the visitors lightly. “Like captain (Amritraj) said, its a great draw for us. As far as doubles goes, we have to play our best tennis..I dont think we were looking at any particular players (of the opposition) that we wanted to play with. They are a very good team. We have to play some good tennis.” Koreas non-playing captain Gap-taik Ro, meanwhile, also said that the weather conditions will play a part. “Lets see how the weather plays out,” he said replying to a quesiton about the weather conditions here. PTI SUN PM PMadvertisementlast_img read more

Findings To Guide Sports Integrity Strategy

first_imgThe research, conducted by the Australian Sports Commission, has identified verbal abuse, excessive pressure placed on athletes by coaches and parents and players going beyond the spirit of the game, as the most important issues facing local and community sporting clubs. “If we want more kids and adults to take up sport then we need to ensure they have a safe and enjoyable experience,” Senator Arbib said.“While sport is about pushing yourself to improve and excel, there is no place in sport for these sorts of negative behaviours which cross the line. “The findings of the Ethics in Sport report are a key part of developing a National Integrity in Sport Strategy. “The Australian Sports Commission will lead the development of this strategy in consultation with sporting organisations. It will seek to ensure athletes, coaches, officials, volunteers and spectators participate in a responsible and safe manner.“While Government has a role to play, parents, coaches and sporting organisations also need to take responsibility and take action against inappropriate behaviour.”Senator Arbib said while professional sports were tackling issues like match fixing and drug use it was equally important to consider the problems affecting school or weekend sporting competitions.“The Federal Government has been working with international and Australian sporting bodies to tackle issues affecting the integrity of sport, in particular match fixing, but we can’t lose sight of the factors that affect our junior and local club players, coaches, officials and parents,” Senator Arbib said.“The National Integrity in Sport Strategy will address these issues which affect both professional sport and young players – whether that be match fixing and drugs in sport or abuse of athletes.”The Ethics in Sport report outlines the findings of a web survey of over 3,700 players, coaches, officials and administrators from local, state and national levels. Survey respondents were predominantly from grass roots community sport and were surveyed on issues including abuse and violence, inequity and harassment, and anti-social behaviours and attitudes. Key findings revealed that during the past 12 months:•       87% of officials surveyed had experienced or seen athletes being pushed too hard by coaches or parents;•       80% of administration staff surveyed had experienced or seen sledging and negative coaching behaviours and practices; and•       76% of players surveyed had experienced or seen the issue of ‘going beyond the spirit of the game’. The development of the National Integrity in Sport Strategy will also guide new and existing programs and initiatives to reduce instances compromising the ethics and integrity of sport. To date, the ASC has worked with Australian sport to:•       Promote the Essence of Australian Sport initiative which defines the core principles of sport in Australia;•       Ensure all sports have an active Member Protection policy;•       Develop resources and deliver education to assist sport in providing a safe, fair and respectful environment for their members;•       Partner with key state and federal government agencies to develop the Play by the Rules website, which provides information and online training to sport to prevent and manage various forms of harassment, discrimination and child abuse;•       Deliver an initiative that promotes gender and sexual diversity in sport, Fair go, sport!, with the Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commission;•       Conduct a cross-cultural awareness education program through the Indigenous sport network;•       Develop an All Cultures online resource which aims to assist sporting organisations to include people from multicultural backgrounds in sport, and therefore increase participation rates; and•       Develop a range of resources and tools to assist with the inclusion of people with disability in sport.To see the full results go to www.ausport.gov.au/supporting/ethics/strategies_and_initiatives/research       The outcomes of this survey will assist in guiding the Australian Sports Commission and its partners with the development of industry-wide national strategies and solutions. Touch Football Australia supports the Australian Sports Commission’s National Integrity in Sport Strategy.last_img read more

New St. Mary Drop-In Centre Officially Opened

first_img The newly built St. Mary Drop-in Centre, located on Hodgson Street in Port Maria, was officially opened on Thursday (November 1) by Local Government and Community Development Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie.The facility, which will provide provisional shelter for homeless persons in the parish, was constructed at a cost of $12 million.Its features include offices for an administrator and medical staff; staff bathrooms; a dining room, kitchen, storeroom, laundry room, bathrooms, and two overnight rooms.Speaking at the official launch of Local Government and Community Development Month at the Claude Stuart Park in Port Maria, Mr. McKenzie said the Ministry is providing an additional $1.5 million to erect a perimeter fence as well as to undertake landscaping of the property.Additionally, he said the Ministry will provide the necessary funding to pay the staff and manage the centre.Mr McKenzie said the Government is taking the necessary steps to safeguard the welfare of the poor and destitute, while improving their lives.He noted that since 2016, the Administration has spent more than $2 billion to improve the lives of the society’s most marginalised and vulnerable citizens.Mr. McKenzie indicated that his Ministry is working closely with the Ministries of Health, and Labour and Social Security to advance the lives of these individuals.“Your tax dollar is working,” he assured, while urging broad stakeholder partnership in nation buildingFor his part, St. Mary Municipal Corporation Chairman and Port Maria Mayor, Councillor Richard Creary, welcomed the construction of the centre, which falls under the Council’s purview, adding that efforts will be made to facilitate overnight accommodation for homeless persons taken in.Similar expressions of gratitude for the facility were also conveyed by Pastor of the Port Maria New Testament Church, Rev. Nakia Johnson.Chief Executive Officer for the Corporation, Ethlyn Douglas, said the centre is a welcome amenity for the parish’s homeless.“They can come and they can have showers, they can have a change of clothes [and] they can have their medication administered. We have plans to build on this [and] to do activities here so that they can [be] rehabilitated and get back into their homes,” she told JIS News.Ms. Douglas advised that there are currently 20 registered homeless persons in Port Maria, and indicated that additional data is being captured to reflect the true population.Local Government and Community Development Month is being celebrated in November under the theme ‘Protecting the Vulnerable… Establishing hope through Local Governance’. The facility, which will provide provisional shelter for homeless persons in the parish, was constructed at a cost of $12 million. Story Highlights The newly built St. Mary Drop-in Centre, located on Hodgson Street in Port Maria, was officially opened on Thursday (November 1) by Local Government and Community Development Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie. Its features include offices for an administrator and medical staff; staff bathrooms; a dining room, kitchen, storeroom, laundry room, bathrooms, and two overnight rooms.last_img read more

Cook rejects charges of Apple being a monopoly

first_imgSan Francisco: Apple CEO Tim Cook has rejected the allegation that Apple was “a monopoly” that should be broken up along with other US tech giants such as Google, Amazon and Facebook. In an interview to CBS News, Cook said that though Apple was big in size and government scrutiny was “fair,” he would not agree with the argument that his company was a monopoly, Xinhua news agency reported on Tuesday. “I don’t think anybody reasonable is going to come to the conclusion that Apple’s a monopoly… Our share is much more modest. We don’t have a dominant position in any market,” he said. Also Read – SC declines Oil Min request to stay sharing of documents The Apple CEO agreed that the government scrutiny of big tech companies was fair. “We should be scrutinised.” However, he expressed a strong disagreement with calls by some politicians in Washington that tech giants like Apple should be broken up. Over the past few days, media reports said the US authorities are mulling an antitrust probe into big tech companies for a wide range of issues, such as fake news, the policy of user privacy, their monopolised shares on advertising market and foreign influence in US political affairs via social media platforms.last_img read more

Govt taking steps to check leakage of foodgrains Paswan

first_imgNew Delhi: The government has taken a number of steps to check leakage of foodgrains from FCI and Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC) godowns that include electronic surveillance and police action against the guilty, the Lok Sabha was informed on Tuesday. Union Food and Consumer Affairs Minister Ramvilas Paswan said the steps taken to check leakage of foodgrains from Food Corporation of India (FCI) and CWC godowns include installation of barbed wire fencing on boundary walls and provision of high mast lights in godowns and complexes. Also Read – How a psychopath killer hid behind the mask of a devout laity! Paswan said deployment of security staff of FCI as well as other agencies, security inspections as well as surprise checks of depots, installation of CCTV cameras to enhance electronic surveillance and disciplinary action, including police cases, in case of leakage are other key steps. The minister said as on June 1, 2019, FCI has 563 depots and godowns across India. Out of these, 532 are operational, while remaining are either let out to state governments or non-operational due to various reasons. The CWC operates 421 warehouses for storage of foodgrains and other notified commodities, he said.last_img read more

Quebec waiting on feds to appoint Superior Court justices to help curb

first_imgQUEBEC – Quebec Justice Minister Stephanie Vallee is calling on the federal government to appoint 10 new Superior Court justices in the province in short order.Vallee said measures taken by the province to curb delays in the justice system are progressing as she announced new projects Tuesday designed to address the case crunch.But Vallee said the shortage of Superior Court justices is still creating problems in light of a 2016 Supreme Court ruling that set stringent time limits on cases getting to trial.Known as the Jordan ruling, it states that legal proceedings can’t exceed 18 months in provincial court and 30 months in Superior Court.Vallee announced she will add up 20 new legal aid lawyers and more than two dozen support staff to that office.The province will also try to lessen the burden by a new handling of certain minor infractions through an 18-month pilot project in some courthouses. Under the plan, remedies such as community service would be used instead of incarceration.In December, Quebec announced it was investing an additional $175 million over four years in the clogged system to recruit new judges, prosecutors and other staff.In Quebec alone, there were 895 Jordan-related requests for a stay of proceedings filed as of late May.Speaking to reporters at the courthouse in Quebec City on Tuesday, Vallee said the province has added nearly 450 new justice system support staff and is moving forward on hiring new Quebec court judges and opening new courtrooms.But the lack of Superior Court justices is problematic and she said 10 additional appointments would considerably cut the number of outstanding cases.“It would represent about 35 trials before a jury that would have been completed or on the way to being completed,” Vallee said. “So every day that passes counts.”A spokesman for federal Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould said that there are only three vacancies on the Superior Courts in Quebec and those will be filled in short order.“We have been working closely with our provincial and territorial counterparts to address the implications of the Jordan decision,” David Taylor said in a statement to The Canadian Press. “As we have said all along there is no one silver bullet to address court delays. Judicial appointments are one piece of a complicated puzzle.”Taylor said Quebec is seeking additional positions and that request is going through a federal-provincial verification process.“The federal government cannot name 10 judges in Quebec,” Taylor said. “The additional positions Quebec is seeking do not yet exist.”last_img read more

Tug carrying up to 22000 litres of fuel capsizes in Fraser River

first_imgVANCOUVER – The smell of diesel filled the air as crews worked to recover a capsized tugboat that may have spilled as much as 22,000 litres of the fuel in the Fraser River between Vancouver and Richmond on Monday night.Canadian Coast Guard spokesman Dan Bate said it’s unknown what caused the George H. Ledcor tug to capsize around 10 p.m. Monday, just east of Vancouver International Airport.There were four people aboard the vessel and all were rescued by the crew on a nearby tug, Bate said.The capsized vessel is part of a gravel tug-and-tow operation and was towing a gravel barge at the time. The vessel was about three-quarters submerged and had been secured to pilings, Bate said.While the tug’s fuel capacity is 22,000 litres, he said crews are still assessing the total volume of the fuel spill.It’s unclear what the impact of the spill will be on the ecosystem, which is at the north arm of the salmon-bearing Fraser River.“Right now it’s too early to see what that looks like, obviously it will depend on the quantities and actions that are taken,” Bate said.Booms and absorbent pads have been placed around the vessel by the coast guard and Western Canada Marine Response Corporation, the organization responsible for responding to oil spills along the B.C. coast.Michael Lowry with Western Canada Marine Response said the company has been retained by Ledcor, which operates the tug, and about 15 bags of the absorbent pads have already been collected.He said the pads are put in place when there is a “light sheen” on the water, adding it was impossible to tell how much diesel had been soaked up.David Hoff with Ledcor said divers have been down to see the tug and assess how the company would recover the vessel.The company said the recovery would happen on Wednesday.“For safety reasons an additional, larger crane and barge will be used to lift the tug. Spill containment equipment and personnel will remain on-site until the lift is completed,” it said on Twitter.Other responding agencies include the B.C. Environment Ministry, City of Vancouver, Musqueam First Nation and Transport Canada.In a statement, the First Nation said the fuel spill is “of great concern” to the Musqueam people, who have been fishing the biggest salmon return in years on the Fraser River alongside other fishermen.Musqueam has deployed staff to monitor the containment and cleanup, it said, however Chief Wayne Sparrow expressed frustration that the First Nation has done so without any federal support through the $1.5-billion Oceans Protection Plan.“The impact of what has happened with this immediate situation is an indication of what is to come as far as additional tanker traffic, barges and pollution. We are not in opposition to Canada’s plan on industrialization of the river, but we need to be there at the front of any kind of emergency response, period,” Sparrow said in the statement.The City of Vancouver said in a release that it was closing the beach at Fraser River Park until further notice, as the park is upstream from the area where the tugboat capsized. The City of Richmond also closed the shoreline of McDonald Beach Park as a precaution.Earlier today, Vancouver’s environmental protection branch assessed Deering Island, near where the tug capsized, and found no signs of sheen and no smell, the release said. It added the city is continuing to monitor the situation as the tide and conditions change.Note to readers: This is a corrected story. A previous version based on information from the Canadian Coast Guard said the tug capsized early Tuesday and was not towing a barge.last_img read more

CUPE calls off Flair Airlines job action citing job security concerns

first_imgThe Canadian Press BURNABY, B.C. — The Canadian Union of Public Employees has called off a job action by 139 Flair Airlines flight attendants that was set to begin at midnight tonight.The union cites concerns for the job security of members of CUPE Local 4060 for its decision. It says in a release that Flair Airlines issued memos to employees advising that anyone taking part in the job action would not be scheduled for further work.It also says the company offered an additional $150 pay per day to anyone crossing the picket line to get to work.The union says it’s going to challenge Flair’s move at the Canada Industrial Relations Board before proceeding with any job action.Contract negotiations have been ongoing for more than a year, and CUPE issued the strike notice after mediated talks on Wednesday failed to resolve outstanding issues involving wages, pensions, time credits and scheduling.Flair Airlines flies out of Vancouver, Abbotsford, Kelowna, Calgary, Edmonton and Toronto.last_img read more

Supreme Court of Canada to hear cases in Winnipeg during September visit

first_imgOTTAWA — The Supreme Court of Canada plans to visit Winnipeg in September to hear two appeals and meet with Manitobans — the first time the court will sit outside of Ottawa.The high court says going on the road is part of an effort to make the venerable institution more accessible to the public.The court plans to hold a large public event in Winnipeg and meet with various groups, including students and members of the Indigenous, francophone and legal communities.The justices, hosted by the Manitoba Court of Appeal, will hear a criminal-law case from Manitoba on Sept. 25 and a language-rights appeal from British Columbia the following day.In recent years the Supreme Court has tried to connect more easily with Canadians by embracing social media and issuing plain-language summaries of its decisions.Last June, Chief Justice Richard Wagner first mentioned the intention to visit Winnipeg and mused that he would love to see the court hold hearings outside of Ottawa from time to time.In a video announcement Monday, Wagner said it is important for the court to be more accessible to all Canadians, “because the Supreme Court is your court.”“This will be an opportunity for more Canadians to see the court at work, live, right in front of them. We’re very excited to go to Winnipeg, and to welcome Manitobans into their court.”The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Moroccos Chefchaouen Inspires Facebooks Founder Mark Zukerberg

Rabat – Facebook has announced it is adding new features to the Instagram experience.The CEO of the social media giant, Mark Zukerberg, announced on Tuesday ‘big improvements’ to the online social networking service Instagram to help users discover trending landmarks and areas.In addition to Yosemite National Park in California, Zukerberg also shared on his official Facebook page pictures of the city of Chefchaouen, located in northwest Morocco. “Today we’re making some big improvements to Instagram to help you discover more great content from across the community,” Zukerberg said.“Every day we share millions of photos and videos on Instagram that provide a snapshot of the world. We’re improving the Explore tab to include trending tags and places, and also an upgraded search tool, so now it’s even easier to experience what the world is seeing.”Facebook is improving the ability for users to find what they are looking for with the all-new Explore page, which surfaces trending tags as they emerge in real time.The American social media giant is also introducing the new “Places Search,” which helps users search across people, places, and tags all at once.Instagram was created by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger and launched in October 2010 as a free mobile app. It was acquired by Facebook in April 2012 for an estimated $1 billion. read more

Women are major agents for progress in climate change development goals –

1 December 2009Women, among the first victims of climate change and enduring social ills, must also be seen as principal agents for change both in curbing global warming and in attaining the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) to improve the lot of humankind, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said today. “Think of the women who, as a result of desertification linked to climate change, will have to forage even farther and longer for wood and water,” he told the Women’s International Forum that brings together some of the world’s most pre-eminent women. “Think of the women small-holder farmers who could see their crop yields fall by half over the next decade because of increasingly erratic rainfall. “Think of the women who depend directly on the environment for their livelihoods and for the well-being of their families and communities,” he said, stressing that in most parts of the world, more than half, sometimes 70 to 80 per cent, of the burden is borne by women. “People who have been the least responsible for causing climate change are suffering first and worst from its effects.“But let us also remember: to see women only as victims is to miss the point. So let us also think of the women who are custodians of local knowledge about food rationing, water harvesting, and forest conservation. Let us recognize how their insights can point the way toward sustainable natural resources management and green prosperity for all.”With just six days left until the opening of the UN climate change summit in Copenhagen, Mr. Ban said he was looking to women to take up the call for a fair and effective agreement that will reduce emissions while helping vulnerable communities adapt.“Science demands that we act. So does economic common sense,” he declared. “Some say tackling climate change is too expensive, especially at a time of global economic and financial upheaval. They are wrong. We will pay an unacceptable price if we do not act now.”Turning to the MDGs, the targets adopted at a UN summit in 2000 that seek to slash extreme hunger and poverty, infant and maternal mortality, and lack of access to education and health care, all by 2015, Mr. Ban cited the stark challenges: 93 million children, mostly girls, not in school; a woman dying every minute during pregnancy and childbirth from preventable and treatable problems; millions of women without access to decent work and social security. “On development, too, we need to think again: of the women who change their communities,” he said. “Consider Bangladesh, where the success of microfinance has transformed the lives of its people, mainly through the empowerment of its rural women.“Consider also the women who are shaping the policies of their countries through their growing presence in parliament. Our efforts to reach the MDGs and our response to the global economic crisis must place women at the centre of decision-making.”He pledged to appoint more women to senior posts, noting that since taking office three years ago nine new women under-secretaries-general (USG) have been appointed and he would soon name two more to the posts of Associate Administrator of the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and as head of the new gender equality entity.“We have more women USGs than at any time in UN history – and many of them are the first women appointees to positions which have traditionally been held by men over the past six decades,” he said noting that the number of women in senior UN posts has increased by 40 per cent during his tenure. “I will continue to do everything I can to ensure the equality and empowerment of women and girls.” read more

First group of Burundian exfighters repatriated from the DR of Congo UN

The 151 ex-fighters, who were members of the Forces for the Defense of Democracy (FDD) and the National Liberation Forces (FNL), along with 10 of their dependents, left for home yesterday, according to the mission, which is known as MONUC. Since February, the fighters had gradually moved into a transit centre at Adi Kivu, 30 kilometres north of Bukavu.Yesterday, the former combatants were escorted to the Gatumba refugee centre in Burundi, where they were met by representatives of the national rehabilitation commission before moving on to their home districts, MONUC reported.The mission hailed this development and praised Bujumbura for its cooperation while expressing hope that the several hundred Burundian combatants still estimated to be in the DRC would soon be repatriated through similar operations. read more

Nigeria inundated by floods UN steps up disease prevention efforts

Nigeria’s two main rivers, the Niger and the Benue, burst their banks after heavy rain began falling in August, and the country has been experiencing large-scale floods.The disaster is now affecting 12 out of 36 states according to the National Emergency Management Agency, with 176,300 people displaced, more than 150,000 hectares of farmland inundated, 17,800 houses washed away, and 321 roads and bridges destroyed.As of Monday, the floods had claimed about 200 lives. A state of national disaster has been declared in the four most-affected states: Kogi, Niger, Anambra and Delta.The United Nations and its partners are carrying out rapid assessments and scaling up support to the Government’s emergency response. In particular, the World Health Organization (WHO) has deployed experts to strengthen surveillance and early warning systems and is working to ensure that essential drugs are available in newly-created camps for displaced families.“In addition to the immediate destructions and loss of lives, floods can severely affect the health of the affected population, even after the water levels have receded,” said the head of WHO in Nigeria, Dr. Wondimagegnehu Alemu, in a statement released on Thursday.Floods and their consequences – including a lack of drinkable water, shelter, and overflowing sanitation systems – can easily lead to the spread of communicable and water-borne diseases, such as cholera and malaria. In addition, access to healthcare and essential drugs can be difficult if health facilities are damaged. “We can efficiently mitigate these risks if they are properly assessed and if disaster response measures are in place,” Dr. Alemu explained. To facilitate the mobilization of resources for the response to the flooding, the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) launched an emergency appeal, seeking close to US$5.5 million. The funds are to support 300,000 of the most vulnerable flood-affected people for the next nine months, with shelter and basic household items; protection and livelihoods assistance, including through cash transfers; health care provision; water and sanitation supplies.The country’s north-east is in the grip of one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises due to conflict, and already suffering various cholera outbreaks in the states of Borno, Adamawa and Yobe, making it crucial for humanitarian partners to effectively monitor and control the effects of the flooding in the rest of the country.In the coming days, the UN humanitarian chief, Mark Lowcock, and the head of the UN Development Programme, Achim Steiner, will visit the region, spending Friday and Saturday in Nigeria, and then moving on to neighbouring Chad. read more

Jaguar Land Rover receives Queens Award for Sustainable Development

Jaguar Land Rover has been honoured with a 2015 Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Sustainable Development for its efforts to reduce the environmental impact of its products and operations.The Queen’s Award for Enterprise identifies outstanding achievements by UK companies in three key areas of business: international trade, innovation and business practice. Jaguar Land Rover received the accolade for its commitment to sustainable business practice.The Award recognises Jaguar Land Rover’s development of world-leading aluminium vehicle engineering expertise, its new low emission Ingenium engines and reductions in energy and water consumption at the company’s Midlands-based manufacturing plants.“Jaguar Land Rover is honoured to receive this 2015 Queen’s Award for Enterprise in Sustainable Development,” said Dr Ralf Speth, Jaguar Land Rover CEO. “We are focused on growing a long-term, sustainable business as leaders in environmental innovation, and making a positive impact on society.”This is the 14th Queen’s Award the manufacturer has received since the scheme was launched, including the 2014 Award for International Trade. Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) read more

Bias incident reported at Clark College

first_imgClark College responded this week to what it calls a “biased-based incident” after someone wrote a racial slur on a public art installation in the Frost Art Complex on campus.A student reported seeing a slur targeting African-Americans written on the display Monday, said college spokesman Chato Hazelbaker, but there were no eyewitnesses or security footage of the incident.Vice President of Administrative Services Bob Williamson alerted the campus of the incident in an email Tuesday, as first reported by the Clark College student newspaper, The Independent.Such incidents, Williamson wrote, “are completely inconsistent with our values.”“We are, and will continue to be, committed to ensuring a safe, inclusive and supportive environment for all members of the college community,” Williamson said.Hazelbaker said the college sends an email reminding students of its policy on discrimination and harassment every quarter.“The timing is such that there was actually a biased-based incident,” he said.This is the first such incident of its kind on campus this school year, Hazelbaker said.When such incidents occur, the college convenes its Bias Based Incident Response Team, made up of administrative officials. That group is able to discuss how to respond and try to prevent such future incidents, Hazelbaker said.Students who see such harassment should notify the campus’s director of security at 360-992-2133 or the Office of Diversity and Equity at 360-992-2053.last_img read more

San Diego County Democratic Party to host mayoral candidate forum

first_img Categories: Local San Diego News, Politics Posted: August 9, 2019 San Diego County Democratic Party to host mayoral candidate forum KUSI Newsroom, KUSI Newsroom center_img August 9, 2019 FacebookTwitter SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – The San Diego County Democratic Party will host a mayoral candidate forum Friday, one of the first major candidate events of the campaign.Assemblyman Todd Gloria, D-San Diego, City Councilwoman Barbara Bry and activist Tasha Williamson will take the stage at San Diego City College’s Saville Theatre to discuss pressing city issues like affordable housing, homelessness and public transit.Gloria has garnered the most buzz since the campaign began in January, earning endorsements from local, state and federal officials like Gov. Gavin Newsom, the Assembly’s Democratic caucus, Rep. Susan Davis, D-San Diego, and San Diego City Attorney Mara Elliott, among others.Bry, meanwhile, has framed herself as a political outsider who is more connected to San Diego residents than politicians in Sacramento. She has leaned on her background as a technology entrepreneur to argue that she would be an effective ally of the city’s thriving biotechnology industry as well as local business leaders.Gloria and Bry have also raised the most money among the mayoral candidate pool. From Jan. 1 to July 31, Gloria raised $646,000 from more than 2,100 donors, while Bry raised $531,591 from about 1,200 donors. Williamson, the candidate with the third-most money raised, mustered less than $1,000.San Diego Union-Tribune reporter Charles Clark will moderate the forum. Although the forum is currently sold out, the party plans to record and post video of it online afterward. Residents can still submit questions for the forum at bit.ly/2yNQGXO.The forum is scheduled to begin at 6 p.m. last_img read more