Perspectives Newsletter Winter 2020
Vol. 42, no.4 / Posted on March 19, 2020

joy agnew

This president’s message was supposed to focus on promoting the joint CIGR/CSBE conference and CSBE annual general meeting that has been diligently planned for well over a year by the local organizing committee in Quebec. Instead, I am sharing the news that the conference is cancelled. We hope to reschedule the conference once more information is available from authorities related to restrictions on travel and gatherings. Please monitor the conference website for on-going updates as the local organizing committee evaluates options for a rescheduled event. Thanks to Stephane Godbout, conference chair, and René Morissette for taking on this monumental task. I suspect many CSBE members will be willing to lend a hand if and when needed to pull together a rescheduled event.

COVID-19 Update

CSBE/SCGAB Council met by teleconference on March 16 to discuss the future of the CIGR meeting in Quebec City planned for June 13 to 17, 2020. The recommendation made to the organizing committee (Chaired by Stephane Godbout) was to postpone the conference. There may be a possibility of moving the meeting to the Thanksgiving weekend (at the latest) as a CIGR or as a CSBE/SCGAB Annual meeting. Perhaps, postponing the conference for a year should be considered. Stephane et al. will be talking to the CIGR directors about next steps.  Presently, there is a lot of uncertainty about when air travel will be back to normal and when we will be back to our daily routines.

Also, we will continue the nominating process for our student/member awards. We may have to present both the 2020 and 2021 awards next year.

John Feddes

Message to Authors and Registrants

With the COVID-19 virus being declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, the Canadian and Quebec governments had put in place several temporary measures to limit the potential spread including the restriction of meetings to 250 people. Also, Canada is closing its border to foreign travel.  

Since the situation is evolving very quickly and unpredictably, the Local Organizing Committee has decided to cancel the June 14 to 18 CIGR meeting in Quebec City. The committee is evaluating various options, including the option of postponing the event to a later date this year. An official announcement will be made by March 31. Until then, we are suspending online registration. For participants already registered for the conference, we will keep you informed as soon as the official decision is made.

We apologize about this situation and we are looking to see you in Quebec City in the next future

Visit our website and Facebook to stay informed.

Dear Members,

It is time to consider and nominate a fellow member for one of the following awards; The successful candidates will be presented their awards at the CSBE/SCGAB – CIGR conference.

Deadline: To Awards Committee by May 1st.

Check our website ( for details. Thanks for considering this.

Maple Leaf Award is acknowledging members who have distinguished themselves as leaders in the profession.

John Ogilvie Research Innovation Award is acknowledging outstanding contributions to research, in any field of research relevant to CSBE/SCGAB, by an individual or team of researchers.

Young Engineer of the Year Award  is acknowledging outstanding work of a young engineer of the Society and to encourage outstanding work by young members of the Society

John Turnbull Award is acknowledging outstanding work in building systems, or waste management in industry, teaching, research, or extension.

Glenn Downing Award is acknowledging outstanding work in industry, teaching, research, or extension in the area of machinery systems, or bioenergy systems.

Jim Beamish Award is acknowledging outstanding work in industry, teaching, research, or extension in the area of soil and water, or environmental sciences

John Clark Award is acknowledging  outstanding work in industry, teaching, research, or extension in one or more of the fields of food engineering, or related industry

Industrial Award is acknowledging industries that have produced a distinguished product or service requiring engineering skill, which has contributed significantly to the fields of agriculture, food processing, or other biological industry.

Fellow Awards - "Grade of Fellow" is acknowledging members of outstanding and extraordinary qualifications and experience in the field of agricultural, food, and/or biological engineering, and shall have met all the requirements for the grade of member.

feddesIts time for the Society to pass on the reins of the Society Manger Position to someone else.  I have really enjoyed being your Society Manager for the past 7 years. Met a lot of great people. Enjoyed working with the Council Members. The Society is in great shape. One challenge we have is recruiting new members and retaining them. Our Society does include many disciplines and interests.

Soooooo, if you are interested, email me (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.). The monthly honorarium is not huge but is worthwhile. Busy at some times of the year and not so other times of the year. The position did not interfere with my life as a retiree. Thanks for considering this!

The Canadian Engineering Memorial Foundation (CEMF) is committed to creating a world where engineering meets the needs and challenges of society by engaging the skills and talents of both women and men alike. To that end, CEMF is dedicated to attracting women to the engineering profession so they may fully contribute to the development of our society and in so doing, honour the memory of the 14 women from L'École Polytechnique whose contributions to Canada ended on December 6, 1989.

We do that primarily by offering scholarships in engineering to young women who demonstrate exceptional leadership and are volunteers in their communities.  We ask our scholarship winners to be Ambassadors for the profession and mentors to those who follow.  Over 600 women studying engineering in Canada have applied for one of our scholarships since 2002 and we have awarded over 200 since then.  The social return on that investment (SROI) has been enormous.

CSBE/SCGAB is pleased to be one of the contributing partners to the CEMF since 2015.