‘Curiosity Shop’ at Congress helps generate discussions about research


A corps of Brock graduate students is volunteering at a Congress 2014 Expo booth called “The Curiosity Shop” to help generate a wide range of conversations about research.

The Curiosity Shop was launched this year as part of the Research Matters campaign, an Ontario-wide initiative co-ordinated by the Council of Ontario Universities to raise the profile of university research.

The Curiosity Shop is open daily throughout the conference and can be found at the Congress Expo in the Walker Complex. Its one-week stay at Brock is part of a travelling road show to ask Ontarians to pose questions they’ve always wanted to have answered. Prior to setting up at Brock, the Curiosity Shop will be at the Pen Centre on Saturday, May 24.

“We had an excellent response from Brock grad students to our call for volunteers,” says Jory Korobanik, Research Matter’s student ambassador representing Brock University.

“The students are looking forward to an opportunity to share their enthusiasm for research as part of Congress and to have some dynamic discussions informally with researchers and practitioners from across Canada.”

Researchers at Congress 2014 are encouraged to stop by the Curiosity Shop to talk about their work and to answer questions from the general public arising out of visits throughout the province since January.

Brock researchers have responded to several of the Curiosity Shop questions gathered from communities across Ontario. The questions below — and their answers — are posted on Research Matters’ website.

Why is the grass always greener on the other side?
(Dr. Michael Busseri)

How does research get from the lab into real world usefulness?
(Dr. Evangelia Litsa Tsiani)

Is sugar good or bad for the brain?
(Dr. Jian Liu)

How do you know calculators get the right answers?
(Dr. Michael Winter)

How does artificial intelligence work?
(Dr. Brian Ross)

Why don’t birds’ legs freeze in extreme cold weather?
(Dr. Glenn Tattersall)

Will Pi ever be defined?
(Dr. Joffre Mercier; Dr. Michael Winter)

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