To date, the following have accepted the invitation to be a keynote/plenary speaker at iEMSs 2010:
Mark Borsuk received a B.S.E. in Civil Engineering and Operations Research from Princeton University, an M.S. in Statistics and Decision Sciences from Duke University, and a Ph.D. in Aquatic and Atmospheric Sciences from Duke University. Mark did his post-doctoral training in the Department of Systems Analysis, Integrated Assessment, and Modelling (SIAM) at the Swiss Federal Institute for Aquatic Science and Technology (EAWAG), where he advanced to head of the Decision Analysis and Integrated Assessment group. He is currently Assistant Professor in the Thayer School of Engineering at Dartmouth College.
Mark’s research broadly concerns the use of scientific information in complex decision processes. More specifically, he develops methods and models that integrate knowledge and data across disciplines to generate probabilistic predictions for supporting environmental and human health policy and management. He uses multiattribute utility theory to relate these predictions to the preferences and risk attitudes of decision-makers, organizations, and the public.
Recently funded projects focus on the development of decision analytic approaches for understanding and enabling regional sustainability. In one project, an interdisciplinary team will be assessing whether explicitly linking mercury pollution to biological and social indicators is likely to increase the motivation for individual and organizational stakeholders to act in ways that promote ecological, economic, and social sustainability. The focus of another project will be on exploring the implications of epistemic uncertainty for integrated assessment of climate change.
Donald Cowan is Distinguished Professor Emeritus at the University of Waterloo. He received his education at the Universities of Toronto (BASc – 1960, Engineering Physics) and Waterloo (MSc – 1961 and PhD – 1965, Applied Mathematics). His current academic specializations include software engineering, software applications, and web-based information systems incorporating geomatics. His recent research has focused on the design and implementation of the Web Informatics Development Environment (WIDE) toolkit, which has been used to produce over 50 operational web-based information systems in the areas of environment, community information, economic development, cultural heritage and health. Donald Cowan is the founding Chairman of the Computer Science Department in the Faculty of Mathematics (1967) at the University of Waterloo (now the David R. Cheriton School of Computer Science). He is the author or co-author of over 230 refereed papers and 15 books in computer science, computer / communications, software engineering, education, environmental information systems and mathematics. Donald Cowan is a co-founder of several University of Waterloo spin-off companies; the most noteworthy ones being WATCOM, now iAnywhere Solutions and part of Sybase, and LivePage Corporation, now part of Oracle Corporation.
Among several honours, Donald Cowan has received the Brazilian National Order of Scientific Merit - Grand Cross, Brazil’s Highest Scientific Honour (2007) in recognition of his research and the more than 40 years he has helped with the development of Brazilian Computer Science. He also received the Award of Excellence in Graduate Supervision (2006) from the University of Waterloo in acknowledgement of his work with and supervision of over 120 graduate students during his academic career. In 2009 he received the Waterloo Award, the City of Waterloo’s highest civic honour, for his contributions to the City of Waterloo.
Ann van Griensven, bio-engineer, obtained her PhD at the Free University of Brussels on integrated water quantity and quality modelling of river basins. For her PhD research, she started her activities in developing and applying the Soil and Water Assessment Tool (SWAT). Afterwards, she worked at the University of California, Riverside, and at the Ghent University. Ann is currently Associate Professor at the UNESCO-IHE Institute for Water Education. She is participating in several EU funded projects on wetland and catchment management in order to reduce pollution. She also leads the ACCION project that investigates the role of uncertainties on the Climate Change in the Nile basin.
In the meantime, she is a highly recognized expert of the SWAT modelling software in which many of her developments have been incorporated (reduced time step, river routing routines, tools for sensitivity analysis, auto-calibration and uncertainty analysis). She is currently active in the SWAT community by organising conferences, workshops and training. Another important field of interest is integrated modelling to support water policy for which she is active within the OpenMI association to support a standardized interface to link models.
With over twenty-five years in government and the private sector, Karen Kraft Sloan has served Canada as both a diplomat and as a member of parliament. Karen founded EcoNexus, a full-service consultancy. Her clients include governments, intergovernmental organizations, universities, non-profits, and the private sector in the field of environment and sustainability. As well, Mrs. Kraft Sloan is a Special Advisor on the Environment to the Vice President for Research and Innovation, York University. She was recently nominated as a council member of the Royal Canadian Institute for the advancement of science, Canada’s oldest scientific society, established in 1849.
Her role as Ambassador for the Environment was pivotal to a strong presence for Canada on the international scene with regard to environment and sustainability issues. She participated in United Nations negotiating sessions and other international meetings, often on behalf of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and Environment. She headed delegations and met regularly with relevant ministers, environmental non-governmental organisations, and the academic community on matters relating to sustainability, the environment, science policy and the Arctic.
Karen Kraft Sloan served for over ten years as a Canadian federal Member of Parliament. Her parliamentary experience encompasses public policy analysis and evaluation, and legislative change, covering a wide range of issues such as: toxics policy and pollution prevention; child environmental health; global climate change impacts and adaptation; science policy; Northern environmental issues (effects of climate change and persistent organic pollutants in the Canadian north and other circumpolar countries); and environmental equity. She was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of the Environment in 1996 and served two terms in that position. As Vice-Chair of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development for eight years, Karen was instrumental in the revision of Canada's three cornerstone environmental statutes: Canadian Environmental Protection Act (CEPA), Species at Risk Act (SARA), and Canadian Environmental Assessment Act (CEAA). As a Parliamentary Secretary and Member of Parliament, she represented Canada in many international fora.
Karen was selected by Prime Minister Paul Martin to provide political leadership in developing a Northern Strategy for the government. She founded and chaired the Northern Science and Research Caucus, as well as co-founding and chairing the Canada-Nordic Contact Group, an organization that brings together Canadian parliamentarians and the Nordic ambassadors to work on common issues of concern. She also co-founded the National Children’s caucus in 1995, continuing her work with that caucus until retiring from political office. The National Children’s caucus was instrumental in effectively influencing the government’s Children’s Agenda demonstrated by substantial increases of funding for the working poor in Canada and through the deployment of various programs including a significant fund for early childhood education.
Her private sector experience includes providing policy and strategic advice; design and delivery of planning processes for program and institutional evaluation; undertaking train the trainer, facilitative leadership development; and organizational mentorship programs. Karen works with individual firms, non-profit organizations, universities and municipal governments on projects dealing with governance issues; institutional building; mainstreaming climate adaptation; organisational change and development; employment equity; urban revitalisation; waste disposal; water-shed management; diversity sensitivity; pension and financial planning; and community health promotion. Recent projects include: the development of a scoping project for a Canadian Oceans Commission; a white paper on strengthening governance in the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence Basin; program evaluation of National Adaptation Plans for Action in African, Middle East and Caribbean LDCs (Least Developed Countries); and the Ontario Climate Collaborative at York.
Karen Kraft Sloan has a Masters in Environmental Studies (York University), an Honours Bachelor of Administrative Studies degree (Brock University), and an Honours Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Studies (University of Windsor). Karen was a guest researcher at Umea University in Umea, Northern Sweden.
In Spring 2002, she became the recipient of the Douglas J. Pimlott Award, Canadian Nature Federation’s most prestigious award. In 2003, Karen was given the International Fund for Animal Welfare Animal Action Award, and in November 2007, she received the Pinnacle Achievement Award, Bryden Alumni Awards, York University.