In the news

Highlights of UBC media coverage in November 2012

Wireless vehicle charging technology

No one likes having to remember to plug in his or her electric car every night. Researchers at UBC have developed a way to wirelessly charge electric cars and trucks, reported The New York Times, BBC, Toronto Star, National Post and CBC.

Led by applied physicist and inventor Lorne Whitehead, the researchers have produced a safe, efficient method that employs remote magnetic gears.
A demonstration system has operated successfully on the UBC campus for about a year.

“Since we began testing the system, the feedback from drivers has been overwhelmingly positive—all they have to do is park the car and the charging begins automatically,” said David Woodson, managing director of UBC building operations.

Veterans’ transition to civilian life

One of the most difficult parts of being a soldier is coming home. Since 1999 a program at UBC has helped Canadian veterans move from military life back to civilian life. That program is now expanding into a national non-profit organization, called the Veterans Transition Network, reported Global National, The Canadian Press, CBC On the Coast and several others.

Tim Laidler, the executive director of the Veterans Transition Network, went through the program after he returned from a tour in Afghanistan. “I really wanted to make sure that other veterans across Canada, like myself, got the chance to go through the program.”

About 275 vets have already completed the 10-day program. In the program, founded by professors Marvin Westwood and David Kuhl, troops relive their trauma through reenactments with peers.

U.S. election

UBC professors provided expert commentary about the November 6 U.S. election for The Globe and Mail, Global, CBC Early Edition, Times Colonist, Vancouver Sun and others.

Paul Quirk, Richard Johnston, Evan Wood, Werner Antweiler, Marit Rehavi and Kevin Milligan discussed results, polls, the economic impact, the “fiscal cliff”, the legalization of marijuana and more.

“It is worth thinking about why Obama is doing well in the swing states. It means that he has done better than Romney where both have campaigned heavily,” noted Quirk, the Phil Lind Chair in U.S. Politics and Representation in the Department of Political Science, during The Globe and Mail’s live blog on election night.

Summer babies less likely to be CEOs

A UBC study found that babies born during the summer months are less likely to become corporate CEOs, reported Time, The Wall Street Journal, National Geographic, CBC The Current, the Toronto Star and others.

The study, co-authored by Maurice Levi from UBC’s Sauder School of Business, found that children born in the summer months are most likely to be the youngest in their classes. As a result of being intellectually or physically less mature, these students are less likely to excel from the outset—a phenomenon known as the “birth-date effect.”

“Early success is often rewarded with leadership roles and enriched learning opportunities, leading to future advantages that are magnified throughout life,” said Levi.