When InteliRain CEO Cam Cote realised that wind was thwarting the efficiency of his sprinklers, he turned to a University of Alberta mathematician to develop an innovative solution through a Mitacs internship.
A recent outbreak of spruce budworm infestation in Quebec contributed to millions of dollars in lost revenue potential for Canada’s lumber industry and threatened forests in northern New Brunswick. This prompted researchers at the University of New Brunswick (UNB) and Carleton University to partner in the development of solutions to ward off the forest pest.
The devastating impacts of flooding are widely understood, but for Mitacs Globalink intern Ashwini Petchiappan they hit close to home. Ashwini and her family were living in Mumbai when the city experienced a catastrophic flood in 2005.
My initial estimate of this “water footprint” showed that 1,900 litres of water were required every year to grow one kilogram of soybean in Southern Amazonia. However, this estimate was based on a crop modeling exercise with assumptions that don’t reflect the realities of producing in the tropics.
“During my internship, I became very comfortable speaking to businesses and explaining the benefits of my expertise. I learned about the kinds of things industry was interested in and how my research could address them.” she said. “It gave me the boost of confidence that I needed.”
“By collaborating with other businesses and customers at the local level who share my values, I hope to develop locally-oriented solutions to food security. I see cooperation as key to establishing a local food industry that rivals the global industrial food system.”
Yet people from the village of Valnur in Kodagu (Coorg district) took the sight in stride, affectionately dubbing us the “fish women” and inviting us into their homes for lunch and their temples for festivals.
My research showed that this particular village is being negatively affected by factors like lack of fishing space, reduction in daily income, conflict with a nearby village, and lack of communication between fisher villages.