Dean's Statement on Anti-Racism
Racism has no place in the University or London community. Everyone in Western Science is appalled by news of violence directed against Black and Indigenous people, particularly in Canada. This intensifies our resolve to remove obstacles and systemic barriers to creating a community in our Faculty of Science in which we can all study Science in an atmosphere of mutual respect. As a Faculty of Science and as members of the London community, we condemn all racist acts, whether intended or arising from ignorance, and the power imbalances they reflect and perpetuate. Power imbalances and racial biases also exist in our own Faculty community.
Our resolve to improve must be matched with thoughtful action. I affirm Western Science's active role and support in Western's response to the Anti-Racism Working Group Report. Over the coming weeks, I commit to working within and outside our Faculty to identify issues from staff, faculty, and students. This process will be followed by planning and action within our Faculty of Science, informed and led by our community. We will, together, speak up and stand up for the changes needed.
Matt Davison, Faculty of Science Dean
- Our solar system is full of moons – more than 200 of them – but we have yet to definitively spot a moon orbiting a planet beyond our own system. However, astronomers have now found six exoplanets that may have natural satellites. Chris Fox and Paul Wiegert at Western University in Canada searched data from the Kepler space telescope for a phenomenon called a transit timing variation. When an exoplanet crosses in front of its star, or transits, we see a dip in the star’s light.
- Europa is Jupiter’s sixth-largest moon, but it's smaller than Earth’s moon and hosts an ocean that may be twice the volume of Earth’s own. Now, new research presented at the Goldschmidt geosciences conference suggests that, based on how the Jovial moon’s ocean formed, Europa may have been capable of supporting life.
- Nursing professor Cheryl Forchuk and Biology professor Jeremy McNeil have been awarded the 2020 Hellmuth Prize for Achievement in Research. The honour recognizes faculty members with outstanding international reputations for their contributions in research – one of the defining hallmarks of a university.
- Moons seem to be everywhere these days. There should be fresh boot prints on our own in several years, and NASA is going to send off missions to the moons of Jupiter, Saturn and maybe even Neptune in the near future. But what lies beyond our solar system? Astronomers at Western University have detected what could be evidence for six new exomoons hiding in Kepler data.