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Thursday, May 17, 2012

  • David Wallace named Chief Information Officer
  • Calling all posthumans
  • The curious case of the disappearing Tuesday
  • Editor:
  • Brandon Sweet
  • Communications and Public Affairs

Ch-ch-changes: This week the Waterloo Unlimited high school enrichment program explores the theme of "Change" across the disciplines at the University of Waterloo. Here, Professor Ted McGee, from the English Language and Literature Department, examines the broad implications of a major scientific paradigm shift as represented in Bertolt Brecht's play Galileo.

Photograph by Ryan Voisin.

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David Wallace named Chief Information Officer

with material from a media relations news release

"It is my pleasure to announce the appointment of David Wallace as chief information officer commencing on July 9, 2012," wrote Vice-President Academic and Provost Sallie Ann Keller in a memo distributed to campus yesterday. David Wallace.

The memo continues: "David began his career as an IT professional in 1981 as a programmer analyst at Gulf Canada. After four years in the private sector, he joined the Ontario government where he worked for 20 years in progressively challenging roles, culminating in his taking a position in the Ministry of Government Services – Office of the CIO as chief technology officer (an assistant deputy minister level role). In this role, he led the enterprise architecture and change management programs for the Ontario public service and played a key role on the IT Executive Leadership Council and other steering committees."

"David left the Ontario government in 2005 to work for Chartwell IRM (now KPMG) as vice-president, national public sector program, where he was responsible for leading information management, business transformation, strategy and IT initiatives at all three levels of government. In 2007, David returned to the public sector to become the first chief information officer at the City of Toronto. Working closely with his senior management team and other divisions, he transformed the city’s IT organization to be a stronger, more federated shared services environment with improved governance and a customer-centric focus."

Wallace holds a Bachelor of Business Management (Ryerson University), Business Administration Diploma (Computer Science and Accounting/Finance Majors) (Ryerson University), Master of Business Administration (University of Toronto), and an Information Systems Professional designation from Canada’s Association of IT Professionals.

“David Wallace’s leadership and vast experience in so many sectors of information technology in both the private and public sectors will benefit and enrich the university,” said Feridun Hamdullahpur. “Information technology affects every facet of the institution. We are pleased to welcome him to this crucial role.”

Working with deans, senior administrators and information technology teams, the CIO is a strategist and manager who leads the forging of an integrated infrastructure that is best in class, and advance a collegial process of strategic change across a distributed IT community.

“The University of Waterloo has an international reputation, recognized excellence and a commitment to innovation,” said Wallace. “I am eager to work with the students, faculty and staff in realizing Waterloo’s compelling vision.”

The Chief Information Officer Nominating Committee was formed in December 2011 to identify a successor to Alan George, associate provost, information systems & technology. The committee engaged the services of Odgers Berndtson, an external search consulting firm. The committee then met seven times over five months, beginning in January 2012. At its first meeting, the committee considered the position title and agreed that it should be renamed Chief Information Officer, "taking into account the strategic nature of the role and the title used at other Canadian universities." Consultations followed as the search committee solicited feedback from the university community and conducted interviews with members of the Board of Governors, senior administration, associate deans, academic support unit heads, senior IST staff, and student leaders to get a sense of the issues, priorities, and opportunities that face the chief information officer. The position was advertised in late January and February.

"Please join Feridun and me in welcoming David to his new role at the University of Waterloo," Keller wrote in conclusion. "We look forward to the leadership David will bring to the chief information officer portfolio."

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Calling all posthumans

Colloquium poster.The 2012 Colloquium of the Student Association for Graduates in English (SAGE) will take place on May 18 and 19. The theme of the colloquium is De/Centering the Human Subject: A Graduate Conference on Posthumanism and the Humanities.

The colloquium will feature keynote speaker Dr. Cary Wolfe of Rice University who will be delivering a lecture on the topic of his forthcoming book "Before the Law: Humans and Other Animals in a Biopolitical Frame." The lecture will take place on Friday, May 18 at 5:00 p.m. in HH 1102. All are welcome to attend.

According to the presentation abstract, Wolfe will address the problem of neo-vitalism in current biopolitical thought. Examining the work of Roberto Esposito, Michel Foucault, Giorgio Agamben, and others, we will explore the challenges involved in framing what Esposito calls an "affirmative" biopolitics, and how different forms of life may be taken account of in relation to juridico-political norms without falling back on an undifferentiated biopolitics of "life."

Then, at 7:30 p.m. Friday, there will be an exhibition and reception at the Critical Media Lab in downtown Kitchener.

The colloquium continues Saturday with a program of talks, roundtables, and panels by graduate students and faculty on a variety of topics including "Necromedia," "Posthumanist Subjectivities," and "Abjectability."

Registration for the colloquium is free. Mirrorshades are optional.

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The curious case of the disappearing Tuesday

The Victoria Day holiday, which has crept up so quietly that it is hard to believe it is almost upon is, is throwing a monkeywrench into regularly scheduled classes, according to the Registrar's Office. Registrar Ken Lavigne has this to say: "The scheduling of classes is different next Tuesday as a result of the Monday holiday. We will follow a Monday schedule on Tuesday to make up for the missed Monday. Tuesday will not be made up as this measure brings the number of Tuesdays in line with the rest of the teaching days. A similar measure will be taken in July after the Canada Day holiday."

So long Tuesday, we hardly knew ye.

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Countdown to Congress: 9 days remaining

Factoid: The campus geese at the University of Waterloo are boycotting the meetings of the Canadian Game Studies Association.

Congress 2012 takes place May 26-June 2, 2012, and is co-hosted by University of Waterloo, Wilfrid Laurier University and organized by the Canadian Federation of the Humanities and Social Sciences. Crossroads: Scholarship for an Uncertain World, the theme of Congress 2012, explores the real-world impact of the humanities and social sciences. Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences is the largest annual multidisciplinary academic gathering in Canada.

Link of the day

World Telecommunication and Information Society Day

When and where

Unofficial grades begin to appear in Quest April 23, standings and official grades available May 22.

Waterloo Unlimited Grade 10 "Change" program, Sunday, May 13 to Thursday, May 17.

Chemistry Department Seminar Series featuring Prof. Venkataraman Thangadurai, Department of Chemistry, University of Calgary, "Solid State Materials for Lithium Ion Batteries and Solid Oxide Fuel Cells," Thursday, May 17, 10:00 a.m., C2-361.

Warriors band practice, Thursday, May 17, 5:30 p.m., PAC 1001.

Chemistry Department Seminar Series featuring Prof. Stephanie Brock, Department of Chemistry, Wayne State University, "The Role of Synthetic Levers for Control of Phase, Size and Morphology in Nanoscale Transition Metal Pnictides: Consequences for Catalytic and Magnetic Properties," Friday, May 18, 10:00 a.m., C2-361.

UW International Spouses presents "Cooking Risotto Italian-style," Friday, May 18, 12:45 p.m., CLW Community Centre. To pre-register email elena.cecchetto@

English Graduate Student Association SAGE Colloquium featuring keynote speaker, Cary Wolfe, Friday, May 18, 5:00 p.m., HH 1102.

Victoria Day holiday Monday, May 21, classes cancelled, university offices and most services closed.

University senate Tuesday, May 22, 3:30, Needles Hall room 3001.

Biology seminar featuring Dr. Janet Braam, Professor and Chair, Department of Biochemistry and Cell Biology, Rice University, "Plant Defense: Roles for Touch and Time," Wednesday, May 23, 2:30 p.m. EIT 3142, refreshments provided. Special meet and greet with Biology students, staff, and faculty from 2:10 to 2:30 p.m.

Farewell reception for Alan George, Thursday, May 24, 3:30 p.m., Festival Room, South Campus Hall. RSVP by May 18 to Michelle Mank, ext. 36448 or mank@

Warriors band practice, Thursday, May 24, 5:30 p.m., PAC 1001.

School of Public Health and Health Systems research seminar featuring Dr. Jennifer O'Loughlin, Université de Montréal, "Quit-It: New perspectives on youth cessation from NDIT," Thursday, May 24, 4:00 p.m., LHN 2703.

Pension and Benefits Committee meeting Friday, May 25, 8:30 a.m., NH 3004.

Building and Properties Committee meeting Friday, May 25, 3:00 p.m., NH 3004.

Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences hosted by Waterloo and Wilfrid Laurier University, May 26 through June 2. Details.

Congress 2012 Big Thinking Lectures, May 26 - May 31. Details.

PhD Oral Defences

Physics and Astronomy. Felix Motzoi, "Controlling Quantum Information Devices." Supervisor, Dr. Frank Wilhelm-Mauch. On deposit at the Faculty of Science graduate office, ESC-254A. Oral defence Tuesday, May 22, 10:15 a.m., RAC room 2004.

Chemical Engineering. Rois Fatoni, "Product Design of Wheat Straw Polypropylene Composite." On deposit in the Engineering graduate office, PHY 3004. Oral defence Thursday, May 24, 9:00 a.m., E6 2022.

Psychology. Sara Hitchman, "The Relation Between Number of Smoking Friends and Adult Smoking Cessation Outcomes." Supervisor, Dr. Geoff Fong. On deposit in the Arts graduate office, PAS 2434. Oral defence Thursday, May 24, 1:00 p.m., PAS 3026.

Physics and Astronomy. Jorge Escobedo, "Integability in AdS/CFT: Exact Results for Correlation Functions." Supervisors, Dr. Robert Myers, Dr. Pedro Vieira. On deposit in the Faculty of Science graduate office, ESC-254A. Oral defence Monday, May 28, 10:00 a.m., PHY 352.

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