Scope – Knowledgespeak: STM Industry Daily News Alert

Springer acquires three OA journals from the Max Planck Society
STM publisher Springer has acquired the three pioneering ‘living’ open access journals: Living Reviews in Relativity (impact factor 19.25), Living Reviews in Solar Physics (impact factor 17.64) and the recently launched journal Living Reviews in Computational Astrophysics from the Max Planck Society. Furthermore, Springer has acquired the domain names livingreviews.org and livingreviews.eu, all registered Living Reviews trademarks, as well as the journals’ wordmarks and logos.
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Elsevier announces Clinical Solutions leadership webinar series
Top clinical thought leaders from STM publisher Elsevier will discuss hot topics in the healthcare industry in a leadership-oriented series of free webinars starting this week. Elsevier Clinical Solutions’ ClinicalKey is presenting these webinars with Health IT Outcomes.
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Three NPG titles dominate multidisciplinary science category of the Thomson Reuters 2014 Journal Citation Report for second consecutive year
Building on its established leadership in multidisciplinary publishing, Nature Publishing Group’s (NPG) open access and interdisciplinary journal publishing programs are flourishing. For the second year running, three NPG titles dominate the multidisciplinary science category of the Thomson Reuters 2014 Journal Citation Report, with Nature, Nature Communications and Scientific Reports ranking first, third and fifth respectively.
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Taylor & Francis Group acquires Maney Publishing
Academic publisher Taylor & Francis Group has acquired Maney Publishing. Maney’s high-quality portfolio consists of scholarly journals in Materials Science and Engineering, the Humanities and Social Sciences, and Health Sciences. Maney’s book series will also be joining Taylor & Francis Group. Taylor & Francis Group is now working to ensure a smooth transition for Maney’s books and journals, and will keep all partners and customers fully briefed as plans develop.
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Zynx Health and McKesson partner to optimise order set deployment
Evidence- and experience-based clinical improvement solutions provider Zynx Health has announced the release of an exclusive integration between ZynxOrder® and Paragon® Hospital Information System release 13 from McKesson that makes order set management easy through automated content synchronization. This intuitive solution eliminates common integration challenges including time-consuming file-based uploads.
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Wolters Kluwer e-book outlines how hospitals can turn data into effective infection prevention programs
Information and point of care solutions provider Wolters Kluwer has announced the release of an e-book that outlines how electronic surveillance systems enable hospitals to leverage their patient data to quickly identify emerging infections and high-risk patients. Particularly timely in light of increased Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) requirements around healthcare-associated infections (HAIs), Turning Data into Action for Automated Proactive HAI Surveillance also documents the cost savings and care improvements realised by hospitals that implement automated surveillance systems.
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ProQuest announces beta launch of new ebook platform – ProQuest Ebook Central
ProQuest has announced the launch of the beta program for its eagerly anticipated new ebook platform – ProQuest Ebook CentralTM. The new ebook platform integrates key elements from both ebrary and EBL – Ebook Library, along with all-new functionality, eliminating the complexities surrounding ebooks and delivering a superior experience for end-users and librarians.
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Thieme named official publisher of World Society of Child Science’s pediatric journals
Thieme Stuttgart has announced that it is now the official publisher of seven quarterly subscription pediatric journals from the World Society of Child Science. The journals cover a range of areas that are essential reading for the pediatric professional.
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IPR License appoints Antonella Pearce as BDM
IPR License, the global rights and licensing trading platform, has appointed Antonella Pearce from the Publishers Licensing Society (PLS) to take on the role of Business Development Manager. Antonella joins IPR from PLS where she worked as Publishers Relations Manager and was the key contact for publishers in relation to mandates, new licensing and rights management services.
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ASEE First Bell – Breaking news in the engineering and technology field

Leading the News

House Votes To Limit Impact Of Administration’s Coal-Fired Greenhouse Gas Rule.

The AP Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Daly) reports that on Wednesday, the House voted 247-180 for a plan to allow states to opt out of the Administration’s plan to “limit carbon pollution from coal-fired power plants if the state’s governor determines it would cause significant rate hikes for electricity or harm reliability of service.” The bill, which the White House has threatened to veto, would also “delay the climate rule until all court challenges are completed.”

The Hill Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Cama, Marcos) reports in its “Floor Action” blog that the bill is a “major blow to the main pillar” of the President’s effort to cut greenhouse gas emissions. The GOP “believes that the rule will not withstand judicial review, so the delay is designed to ensure that the regulation never takes effect.”

WSJournal Highlights Schumer’s Backing Of Carbon Tax. In an editorial, the Wall Street Journal Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Subscription Publication) reports that Sen. Chuck Schumer is in line to be the next Democratic leader in the Senate, and he is already predicting that in 2017, there will be bipartisan support for a carbon tax. The Journal says that it would see a carbon tax as acceptable as long as it was part of broader tax reform that eliminated other sources of revenue entirely, such as corporate taxes or payroll taxes.

Higher Education

ED Officials Say College Rating System Will Not Compare Schools.

Inside Higher Ed Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25) reports that ED officials said on Wednesday that the department’s forthcoming college rating system “will not compare colleges or pass judgment on their relative merits.” The piece reports that Under Secretary Ted Mitchell said that the system “will be more of a consumer-facing tool that students, their families and high school guidance counselors can use to learn more about how undergraduate institutions stack up.” The piece quotes Mitchell saying, “We want to empower them to make comparisons based on measures that matter to them.” The piece characterizes the announcement as a “significant shift” in ED’s plans for the ratings, and quotes Deputy Under Secretary Jamienne S. Studley saying, “It’s a chance for institutions to get better.”

National Science Foundation Issues Grants To Overhaul Undergraduate Engineering Education.

USA Today Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/24, Schmidt) reports that the National Science Foundation has given six universities a total of $12 million in grants “to revolutionize the ways engineering and computer science are taught at the undergraduate level.” The agency released a statement saying that the grants “are part of NSF’s multiyear effort to help universities substantially improve the professional formation of engineers and computer scientists — the formal and informal processes and value systems by which people become experts in these fields.” The piece quotes NSF program director for engineering education Donna Riley saying, “We wanted people to really go bold or go home here. We wanted big ideas that would really change how we’re thinking about engineering education.”

CFPB’s Chopra Joining Center For American Progress, Will Push ITT For Reforms.

The Washington Post Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Douglas-Gabriel) reports in its “Wonkblog” blog that Consumer Financial Protection Bureau student loan ombudsman Rohit Chopra has announced that he is stepping down to join the Center for American Progress “with a plan: To get embattled for-profit ITT Educational Service to change its ways.” Chopra on Wednesday called on the firm’s top investors to “push for reforms at one of the largest operators of for-profit technical schools,” which “is facing multiple lawsuits from state and federal authorities for steering students into predatory loans and lying to investors about the high rates of defaults on those loans.” The piece notes that Chopra “played a key role in exposing abuses within for-profit colleges and the student loan market” during his time at CFPB.

The Huffington Post Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Nasiripour) reports that Chopra “sent a scorching letter to Wall Street warning money managers about their investment in a troubled for-profit college chain,” noting that ITT is one of the biggest for-profit college companies in the nation. Chopra’s letter “contains stark warnings about the value of the investors’ stake in ITT and the company’s ability to survive,” and “unfavorably compared the company to Corinthian Colleges Inc.” In listing the company’s woes, the Post reports that ED “has recently stepped up its scrutiny of the company by limiting its access to federal student aid.”

From ASEE
ASEE ANNUAL CONFERENCE

Short VIDEO highlights – Maria Klawe’s plenary talk at the ASEE Annual Conference
The President of Harvey Mudd addressed diversity issues.

VIDEO Interview with President Joe Rencis
The new ASEE President discusses the next Society year.

Coverage of Boeing CTO John Tracy’s talk on Geekwire
What I look for in hiring recent grads.”

Research and Development

Drexel University Researchers Collaborating On Nanobot Artery Surgery Project.

The Discovery Channel Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25) reports that researchers at Drexel University have announced that they are joining a partnership of 11 other institutions across the globe in a project to replace “traditional methods of treating blocked arteries.” The researchers are working on “drilling through blocked arteries with corkscrew-shaped nanobots.” The piece explains the concept in which a “string of nanoscale iron oxide beads is delivered into the patient’s bloodstream” and is then manipulated with magnetic fields.

UT, St. David’s Researchers Working On New Way To See The Brain; Products In The Works.

The Austin (TX) Business Journal Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Subscription Publication) “Techflash” blog reports that the University of Texas, Cockrell School of Engineering has been awarded a four-year, $1.8 million grant from the National Institutes of Health to develop a new brain imaging technique using lasers to “help neurosurgeons identify blocked arteries in patients undergoing treatment for an aneurysm.”

Global Developments

Israel Hires Lockheed To Create STEM, Cybersecurity Educational Curricula.

The Times Of Israel Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/24, Shamah) reports that on Wednesday Israel’s Science and Technology Ministry signed a second agreement for Lockheed Martin to produce educational curricula in science and technology, with an emphasis on cybersecurity principles. The article says the program aims “to create a new generation of tech experts who will ensure that Israel remains a leader in technology development,” as the country already hosts 300 cybersecurity start-ups that account for ten percent of all cybersecurity investments worldwide. The Times of Israel asserts Lockheed is a good choice for the program because it has “amassed a great deal of experience in educating Israeli kids on STEM – science, technology, engineering and mathematics – programs.” The article describes Lockheed’s STEM work in the country and considers the challenges of raising youths’ interest in STEM studies.

Engineering and Public Policy

Arizona Public Service Settles Pollution Suit Over Coal Plant.

The AP Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Fonesca) reports that electricity generator Arizona Public Service has settled a lawsuit with federal agencies over charges that they ignored permit regulations and violated the Clean Air Act. Negotiations began when environmental groups filed suit in 2011 after the EPA found permit and pollution irregularities in a 2007 inspection of the Four Corners Power Plant that sits on Navajo land. APS will not admit to any wrongdoing, but will pay a $1.5 million civil penalty and spend millions more on pollution control upgrades. Jared Blumenfeld, administrator of the EPA’s Pacific Southwest Region, also noted that APS will pay $2 million in healthcare costs for the Navajo people who live near the plant and have long complained that pollution has made them sick. APS Vice President Ann Becker said that the company has “a long and strong history of environmental stewardship and compliance.”

DOE Guarantees $1.8B In Loans For Georgia Nuclear Plant.

The Hill Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Henry) reports that the Department of Energy on Wednesday announced it will guarantee $1.8 billion in loans for the construction of two nuclear reactors at the Vogtle Electric Generating Plant in Georgia. According to the article, the guarantee follows previously approved guarantees of $6.5 billion, and the DOE said the latest measure will help the first nuclear facility in 30 years to be fully financed. “As we move towards a low-carbon future, the Department’s loan guarantees will play an important part in expanding the role of nuclear energy as a part of our all-of-the-above energy strategy… The Vogtle project has put the U.S. at the forefront of a new generation of advanced nuclear reactors, incorporating numerous innovations resulting in significant operational and safety improvements, and helping to train a world-class workforce with expertise in building nuclear power plants,” said Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz in a statement.

Politico Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/24, Dixon) reports in brief coverage that the guarantee is the last of three parts in an $8.3 billion total commitment, and “is being made to three subsidiaries of the Municipal Electric Authority of Georgia” more than a year after the Energy Department approved “the roughly $3.5 billion and $3.1 billion Southern Co. and Oglethorpe Power portions of the guarantee.”

The Augusta (GA) Chronicle Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/24) and Energy Daily Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25) also report.

EPA Enters Final Review Stage On Methane Leaks.

The Hill Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Cama) reports that the EPA has begun final review of regulations seeking to minimize methane leaks in the oil and gas industry. The proposal was sent to the Office of Management and Budget on Tuesday. Agency spokeswoman Melissa Harrison said that “This routine step is part of EPA’s January 2015 commitment under President Obama’s Climate Action Plan to address methane and smog-forming emissions from the oil and gas industry.” Though not public yet, the rule is expected to apply to new or modified wells. Environmentalists criticize that strategy, demanding that regulations apply to the more than one million existing wells.

Indiana Governor Says State Will Resist EPA Unless Rules Are “Significantly Improved.”

The Hill Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Cama) reports that Indiana Gov. Mike Pence (R) has sent a letter to President Obama informing him that the state has not decided if it will follow the federal government’s climate change regulations. “If your administration proceeds to finalize the Clean Power Plan, and the final rule has not demonstrably and significantly improved from the proposed rule, Indiana will not comply,” the letter reads. Pence maintains that the regulation is an illegal overreach, and thus his state would not have to comply with the constitutional supremacy of the federal government. The Indianapolis (IN) Star Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Groppe) also notes that Pence writes that the state “will also reserve the right to use any legal means available to block the rule from being implemented.”

The plan would be a serious blow to coal-fired electricity production, which comprises 85 percent of the Indiana electric supply. Pence is supported by his state’s senators and the National Mining Association. The AP Share to<br />
FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25) notes that EPA spokeswoman Melissa Harrison said in a statement that the regulations are enacted under authority granted to it by Congress in the Clean Air Act.

NASA Modeling Explores Causes Of Global Warming.

Bloomberg Business Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25) features an interactive article using charts derived from NASA’s climate data, which explore the possible causes of global warming. The models were developed by NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, and they helped to inform the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.

Elementary/Secondary Education

Two New York City Schools Helping Teachers Improve Their Math Teaching.

Education Week Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Heitin) describes how two New York City schools are helping teachers with math anxiety improve their math teaching schools. At PS 26, teachers are being taught that they can improve their own math skills through hard work and are passing on their training to their students. At PS 63, teachers are learning to rely less on their textbooks and meeting together to “relearn the math they learned as children” and talk about their concerns teaching the subject.

Iowa Committee Recommends High School Computer Science Requirement.

The AP Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25) reports that Iowa’s STEM Support of Computer Science working group recommended a high school computer science requirement for graduation. They also called for “an endorsement to recognize teachers and technology professors qualified to teach courses.” However, the governor’s STEM Advisory Council will vote on the recommendations before presenting them to the governor’s office.

Pittsburgh To Restart Public Safety Career And Technical Education Program.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Chute) reports that Pittsburgh’s public school board voted to reopen its public safety career and technical education program, which seeks to serve students seeking to become police officers, firefighters, and emergency medical technicians. Board members favored different locations for the program, and one has not yet been selected.

Academic Camp Uses 3-D Printers To Interest Girls In Science.

The Knoxville (TN) News Sentinel Share to FacebookShare to Twitter (6/25, Shearer) reports that Pellissippi State Community College in Tennessee hosted the weeklong MakeHERSpace academic camp in which middle and high school girls learned “how to put together and use 3-D printers” in an effort to get them “more interested in science or just to enjoy the subject.” The program was helped by a grant from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

Wednesday’s Lead Stories

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Scope – Knowledgespeak: STM Industry Daily News Alert

New Chemical Resistance Database available via Knovel
STM publisher Elsevier has introduced its Chemical Resistance Database: Plastics and Elastomers. Available via Knovel, the database is the industry’s largest compilation of normalized data detailing the degradation of plastics and elastomers exposed to a variety of environments and elements. Characterizing the effect of thousands of reagents, the environment and other exposure media, the new database enables organisations to make well-informed decisions quickly-selecting the best plastics and elastomers for a wide range of new product and process design and manufacturing settings across specialty chemical, engineering, design and construction and other industries.
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Kkottongnae University in Korea implements EBSCO Discovery Service
EBSCO Information Services (EBSCO) has announced that Kkottongnae University in Korea has chosen EBSCO Discovery ServiceTM (EDS) to help integrate resources in the library and simplify the research process for students. Kkottongnae University’s mission is to be a new model for social welfare education and it was important for the university to find a discovery solution that would support its mission and help the students specific research needs.
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Digital Science appoints Daniel Hook as new Managing Director
Global technology company Digital Science has announced the appointment of Daniel Hook, currently Director of Research Metrics at Digital Science, as its new Managing Director. Hook assumes this role from Timo Hannay, who has served as MD since the company’s inception in 2009.
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BMJ set to publish new international orthopaedic sports medicine journal
Global healthcare knowledge provider BMJ has added The Journal of ISAKOS: Joint Disorders & Orthopaedic Sports Medicine (JISAKOS) to its extensive portfolio of specialty journals. The new title, slated for launch in spring 2016, will serve as an official journal of the International Society of Arthroscopy, Knee Surgery, and Orthopaedic Sports Medicine (ISAKOS).
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JHUP awarded grant to develop ‘MUSE Open’
Johns Hopkins University Press has been awarded a grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to support the development of MUSE Open, a distribution channel for open access monographs through Project MUSE, a leading provider of digital humanities and social science content for the scholarly community. MUSE Open will leverage a powerful and trusted distribution channel for long-form humanities scholarship in an enriched digital format.
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Library Journal and Gale name Ferguson Municipal Public Library 2015 Library of the Year
Ferguson Municipal Public Library of Ferguson has been named the 2015 Library of the Year by Library Journal magazine and Gale, a part of Cengage Learning. The small suburban library rose above the chaos and stepped up to provide sanctuary and resources for all in a community in crisis, and remained steadfast to that call over months of duress. The 2015 Library of the Year Award will be presented along with prize money at a reception at the American Library Association Annual Conference on June 28, 2015.
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ASEE First Bell – Breaking news in the engineering and technology field

Leading the News

Outside Auto Safety Experts To Strengthen NHTSA Defect Investigations.

The Automotive Fleet  (6/8) reports “An outside team of auto safety systems experts will spend the next year advising” the NHTSA on how to implement “new reforms to strengthen its defect investigations,” DOT Secretary Anthony Foxx said. The story says NHTSA has also “launched an Internal Risk Control Innovations Program” which brings together NHTSA staff to address emerging safety risks that “cut across NHTSA’s enforcement, vehicle safety and behavioral safety efforts.”

The Motor Authority  (6/8, Coyle) reports the Safety Systems Team (SST) has “already identified needed changes in the agency’s workflow, and will work in tandem with the new Risk Control Innovations Program to allow it to respond to dangerous situations more quickly.” According to Foxx, “With the SST, we are enlisting three of the most experienced and knowledgeable safety professionals in the world to help us implement these changes.”

Politico  (6/8, Scholtes) “Morning Transportation” blog by Jennifer Scholtes reports that NHTSA’s new safety team consists of “Joseph Kolly, NTSB director of the office of research and engineering; former NASA researcher J. Victor Lebacqz; and James P. Bagian, director of the Center for Healthcare Engineering and Patient Safety at the University of Michigan and a former astronaut.” On Friday, Foxx complemented the new team, “These three folks, who come from a variety of disciplines, would be at the top of anyone’s list of safety experts.”

Higher Education

Commentary: Manufacturing Is A Crucial Part Of Engineers’ Education.

Maria Klawe, president of Harvey Mudd College in Claremont, California, writes in a Forbes  (6/8) commentary piece that the US still produces “many goods,” and manufacturing is a key driver of engineering education at higher-education institutions such as hers. She notes that many “colleges and universities are not educating enough students to fill even the current available positions in manufacturing.” The Society for Manufacturing Engineers says there is a “serious skill gap in the U.S. manufacturing workforce,” and estimated that 600,000 manufacturing jobs were unfilled from 2009-12 due to a lack of skilled professionals. Klawe also discusses how her college is taking steps to “incorporate more manufacturing concepts and knowledge into the general engineering program.”

ED To Make It Easier For Former Corinthian Students To Have Debt Forgiven.

The Wall Street Journal  (6/9, Mitchell, Subscription Publication) reports that on Monday, the Administration outlined steps by which the Federal government may forgive significant student loan debts help by Americans who attended colleges that have fallen afoul of regulators. The steps outlined by ED are designed to make it easier for former students of Corinthian Colleges, a for-profit university that has gone bankrupt, to discharge their debt. ED said that it will appoint a special master to develop a system for students at other universities that engaged in deceptive practices. The Journal quotes Under Secretary Ted Mitchell saying, “It is impossible not to be moved by the stories of students whose futures were damaged by the institutions they once believed were setting them on a path to a better life. These processes will offer them real and badly needed help.”

The New York Times  (6/9, Lewin, Subscription Publication) reports that Education Secretary Arne Duncan announced his department would “forgive the federal loans of tens of thousands of students who attended Corinthian Colleges.” He “also said the department planned to develop a process to allow any students — from Corinthian or elsewhere — to be forgiven their loans if they had been defrauded by their college.” Noting that the plan could cost some $3.5 billion over several years, the Times reports that Duncan “stressed the plight of students who took on debt and ended up with a degree that meant little to employers, or no degree at all.” Duncan is quoted saying, “You’d have to be made of stone not to feel for these students. Some of these schools have brought the ethics of payday lending into higher education. This is our first major action on this but obviously it won’t be the last.” Duncan said that students who were defrauded should receive full compensation, saying, “We will make this process as easy as possible for them, including by considering claims in groups wherever possible, and hold institutions accountable.”

In its report, the AP  (6/9, Flaherty) describes the plight of former Corinthian students who were impacted by the firm’s implosion, which was brought about by allegations that its officials “charged exorbitant fees, lied about job prospects for their graduates and, in some cases, encouraged students to lie about their circumstances to get more federal aid.” The piece notes that House Education and the Workforce Chairman John Kline “issued a joint statement with House Democrats applauding the decision.”

The Washington Post  (6/9, Douglas-Gabriel) reports that despite ED’s announcement, “there is still a high bar of proof for some borrowers who may not receive any help,” leading to questions about whether ED “is doing enough to clean up a mess they say could have been prevented.” The piece explains that under the current plan, ED will let students apply if they attended a Corinthian school as far back as June 2014, instead of the previous standard of having attended within 120 days of the schools’ closure.

Bloomberg News  (6/8, Lorin) reports that former Corinthian students “may be eligible for refunds if they attended a Corinthian school as of June 2014, when the department began limiting federal aid to the company.” This piece notes that Mitchell said that some 15,000 former Corinthian students could qualify.

USA Today  (6/8, Toppo) reports that in its announcement Monday, ED said that most Corinthian campuses “were acquired by the nonprofit Zenith Education Group,” allowing “most Corinthian students to continue pursuing their education.” This article notes that the move comes after members of Congress pushed Education Secretary Arne Duncan to act to offer the former students relief.

Other media outlets that covered this story include the Los Angeles Times  (6/9, Kirkham, Masunaga), the Chronicle of Higher Education  (6/9), Reuters  (6/8, Brown, Heals), the International Business Times  (6/9, Glum), the Chronicle of Higher Education  (6/9, Read), the Miami Herald  (6/9), ABC News  (6/9), BuzzFeed  (6/9), the Riverside (CA) Press Enterprise  (6/9), Time Warner Cable News  (6/9), the Orange County (CA) Register  (6/9), CNN  (6/8), the Stockton (CA) Record  (6/8, Writer), and US News & World Report  (6/8).

Plan Sparks Criticism. The AP  (6/9, Flaherty) reports that the plan “raises serious questions about whether the White House or Congress should have done more to prevent the debacle,” noting that some are “questioning the latest approach.” The article quotes Senate HELP Chairman Lamar Alexander saying, “Students have been hurt, but the department is establishing a precedent that puts taxpayers on the hook for what a college may have done.” Alexander also noted an “inherent conflict of interest with having the Education Department provide loans and regulate colleges.”

Minnesota Delegation Has Mixed Reaction To Plan. The Minneapolis Star Tribune  (6/9, Sherry) reports that Minnesota’s members of Congress “had mixed reactions Monday” to the plan, noting that while Rep. John Kline (R-MN) “issued a joint statement with House Democrats saying he was pleased with the decision,” Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN) “said the Department of Education didn’t go far enough.” Meanwhile, Sen. John Kline (D-MN) “said Monday he was pleased, but was going to continue to reach out to Corinthian students.”

Numerous Factors Contributing To For-Profit Sector’s Decline.

NPR’s Morning Edition  (6/9) reports on the factors that are contributing to the decline of the for-profit college sector, noting that ED’s looming gainful employment rule is “far from the only monkey on the sector’s back.” The piece notes that enrollment is declining, and that many firms are downsizing or shutting down. The segment cites “government crackdowns” from such agencies as ED and CFPB, and notes that the criticism of student activists has also had an impact. Moreover, market forces and public awareness play a role. A text article of this story can be seen here  (6/8, Johnson).

ED Stepping Up Enforcement Of Ban On Recruiter Bonuses.

Inside Higher Ed  (6/9) reports that ED is set to “more aggressively pursue colleges found violating the federal ban on paying bonuses to recruiters,” noting that Administration officials said Monday that they have “repealed a 2002 Bush administration memorandum that largely restricted the department’s enforcement of the incentive compensation ban to using fines rather than tougher penalties like limiting a college’s access to federal aid.” A memo signed by Under Secretary Ted Mitchell “instructs department employees to claw back all the federal funds a college received while breaking the rules instead of imposing a fine, which in most cases would be lower.”

Virginia Tech Returns NSF Funds After Audit.

In continuing coverage, the AP  (6/9) reports that “Virginia Tech has repaid more than $64,000 in federal grant money to the National Science Foundation following an audit” by the NSF Office of the Inspector General. The IG report, finalized in April, examined “more than 190,000 transactions related to 685 individual NSF awards to Tech between January 2010 and December 2012.”

From ASEE
Maker Events at ASEE’s Annual Conference
Timed with the White House Week of Making, we’ll livestream two events.

Microinequities: The Power of Small
ASEE members get a steep discount on this engaging webinar when using code ASEE2015.

ASEE’s Diversity Committee Newsletter
The Spring 2015 edition is now online.

Research and Development

Cutting Edge Clothes Dryer Being Developed At ORNL.

The Knoxville (TN) News Sentinel  (6/8) reports that at Oak Ridge National Laboratory “a new-age clothes dryer under development” uses “micro-vibrations instead of heat to remove the water from the laundry, dramatically reducing the drying time and potentially saving energy on a grand scale.” ORNL research engineer Ayyoub M. Momen “said his invention was inspired by a commercial humidifier that used high-frequency vibrations to convert water into tiny droplets — forming a cool mist.” Momen believes that “by eliminating the heat needed to evaporate water in clothes, there’s a tremendous energy savings” because “about 5 percent of a typical American home’s energy use is attributed to the clothes dryer.”

Global Developments

Israel Suffering Software Engineering Shortage.

Bloomberg News  (6/8, Ackerman) reports computer companies in Israel are finding it difficult to obtain qualified workers. The shortage could get worse as “fewer students sign up for the most advanced math classes, the building block for tech careers.” About 250 multinational companies has established development centers in Israel by 2014. Now, “10,000 engineers are needed on top of the current 20,000 to ensure that the sector can grow, says Yoav Chelouche, co-chairman of Israel Advanced Technology Industries.” The Central Bureau of Statistics says there “weren’t enough qualified software developers to fill all job openings in 2013 and 2014.”

Industry News

Airbus Testing Partly Reusable Space Launch System.

The Engineer  (6/8) reports Airbus Space and Defense is carrying out preliminary tests on Adeline (ADvanced Expendable Launcher with INnovative engine Economy), a “partly reusable space launcher system, which could return the main engines and avionics of potentially any launcher to Earth.” In contrast to other reusable systems, Adeline “seeks only to reuse thew most costly parts of a launcher system, sacrificing the fuel tanks.” It will also be compatible with Ariane 6, the forthcoming version of Europe’s launcher system. Airbus has been working on the project since 2010 “and believes it could help it compete against other reusable launcher concepts, such as the Falcon 8 system currently being developed by Space X.”

Engineering and Public Policy

Federal Railroad Administration Touts Safety On Curves.

The Wall Street Journal  (6/8, Tangel, Subscription Publication) reports that the Federal Railroad Administration will press passenger railroads nationwide to step up safety measure at potentially dangerous curves in a bid to avert derailments such as the May 12 Amtrak crash in Philadelphia, according to a Federal official. The Federal regulator is expected to issue a safety advisory this week after it issued an emergency order detailing required safety procedures for Amtrak. The new document would cover the country’s 28 commuter railroads and urge them to espy track segments that require a speed limit drop of more than 20 miles an hour, according to the official. The document will also recommend that railroads put in place signals to automatically decrease the speed of their trains should engineers driving them fail to do so at those locations. Federal Railroad Administration’s acting administrator Sarah Feinberg told a congressional committee last week that her agency was working on security measures despite the regulator’s limited options.

The AP  (6/9) reports that the Federal Railroad Administration has recommended commuter railroads “adjust their automatic train control safety systems to prevent trains from going too fast” at curves. “If automatic train control isn’t available then the train should have a crew member besides the engineer who’s familiar with the route and briefings about where speeds are reduced,” the article reports. The Federal regulator also called for more warning signs about speed to be posted.

WPost: EPA Report Shows Fracking Needs To Be Regulated, Not Banned.

In an editorial, the Washington Post  (6/9) says that in the fight over fracking, “the loudest voices try their best to obscure this essential point: The controversial drilling technique doesn’t need to be banned; it needs to be well regulated.” That’s particularly true in the wake of the release of the EPA’s assessment on fracking’s impact on drinking water, which “supports neither side.”

DOE, Electricity Utilities To Focus On Plug-in Vehicles.

The Hill  (6/9, Henry) reports electric utilities and the Federal government “are looking for ways to boost plug-in electric vehicle production in the United States.” The Energy Department and the Edison Electric Institute “have signed a deal to increase the use of electric vehicles by ‘bringing utilities directly into the fold,’ DOE announced on Monday.” DOE and EEI “will conduct a study on the economic impact of electric cars and the best ways for utilities to invest in them.” DOE says that Federal agencies and states will be asked to work together on ways to “break down barriers to electric-powered driving and expand electric vehicle opportunities in communities across the country.” In a statement Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz said, “Today’s announcement enhances the kinds of private-public partnerships needed to remain at the forefront of advanced vehicle technologies that reduce our emissions and provide safe, reliable transport for the American people.”

Musk Tells Utilities Not To Fear His Battery Systems But To Buy Them.

Bloomberg News  (6/8, Chediak, Hull) reported that at the Edison Electric Institute conference in New Orleans on Monday, Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk “told electric utility owners they shouldn’t fear that his battery systems will put them out of business – instead, they should buy them.” Musk said most U.S. customers will use Tesla’s Powerwall home battery system as backup, and that Tesla’s electric cars will help triple power demand over the next few decades with Musk “seeing less than a third of that served by distributed generation like the battery storage system and solar panels Tesla backs.” Musk “was questioned by Ted Craver, Edison International chairman, president and CEO, which has signed a deal to use Tesla’s batteries with its solar installations.”

Elementary/Secondary Education

Oklahoman FIRST Robotics Competitors Profiled.

The Edmond (OK) Sun  (6/9, Miller) reports on the FIRST robotics participants from the Edmond, Oklahoma area, and notes that five local schools’ students took part in the STEM competition. The article profiles several students working on the project and notes the foundation of the event in 1989.

Chicago Area School Hosts Solar Car Rally.

The Daily Southtown (IL)  (6/8, Neuzil) reports that over 260 fifth-grade students at Chelsea Intermediate School in the Chicago suburbs took part in a “unique” solar energy STEM project. The project, called “Engineering Design with Solar Cars,” was funded by an Ecolab Foundation Visions for Learning Grant. Grant proposer and Chelsea teacher Christine Meade conducted the project. The school held a rally over two days that let students test their cars, redesign them, and compete.

Bill Nye The Science Guy Interviewed On Keeping Students Interested In STEM.

US News & World Report  (6/8, Pannoni) interviews Bill Nye, the star of the Bill Nye the Science Guy series from the 1990s, in its High School Notes blog. The blog notes Nye has been working with the Toshiba/NSTA ExploraVision K-12 science competition for a number of years. Topics include the difficulties with keeping teens interested in STEM subjects, advice for teachers, the role of parents in motivating children, the consequences of a loss of interest in science and math, and the draw of competition and its effect on student interest.

Science Teachers Use Solar Panel Roofs To Teach About Climate.

Capital New York  (6/8, Weill) reports that public school roof gardens in Manhattan, New York are incorporating solar panels, which are being used by some science teachers as “an invaluable teaching tool for lessons on climate change.” New York City and state have put $28 million towards solar panel construction on 24 public school buildings.

Pennsylvania County Schools Offering Art Robots, STEAM Program.

The Greene County (PA) Observer-Reporter  (6/9, Speer) reports that schools in Washington County, Pennsylvania are working with robots under a new Spark Grant for Early Learning. The drawing machines are incorporated into a STEAM program and was created under the leadership of the Sprout Foundation, the McGuffey School District, and the Claysville Elementary Parent-Teacher Organization.

Monday’s Lead Stories

Korean Team Wins DARPA Robotics Challenge.
NASA Works With UPR Students Developing Satellite.
ASU To Establish Energy Partnership Center In Pakistan.
Rosekind: NHTSA Deserved Much Of The Blame For GM Ignition Switch Problem.
Hill Analysis: Divide Over Fracking Falls Along Party Lines.
Florida District Receives $100,000 STEM Grant.

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Scope – Knowledgespeak: STM Industry Daily News Alert

Registrations now open for 7th Conference on Open Access Scholarly Publishing
The Open Access Scholarly Publishers Association (OASPA) has announced that registration is now open for the 7th Conference on Open Access Scholarly Publishing (COASP) which will be held in the Trippenhuis at The Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts & Sciences (KNAW) in Amsterdam, September 15-17, 2015. Early bird registration fees are available until July 9. Further reductions are offered to OASPA and OAPEN members.
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Nominations for 2016 Elsevier Foundation Awards for Early-Career Women Scientists in the Developing World now open
Nominations are now open for the the Elsevier Foundation Awards for Early-Career Women Scientists in the Developing World, a high-profile honour for scientific and career achievements by women from developing countries in five regions: Latin America and the Caribbean; the Arab region; Sub-Saharan Africa; Central and South Asia; and East and South-East Asia and the Pacific. In 2016 the awards will be in the biological sciences, covering agriculture, biology, and medicine. Nominations will be accepted through September 1, 2015.
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SAGE launches Journal of Strategic Contracting and Negotiation
Academic publisher SAGE has announced the launch of the Journal of Strategic Contracting and Negotiation (JSCAN), the official journal of the International Association for Contract and Commercial Management (IACCM). JSCAN provides an outlet for cutting edge research and theory about practices that challenge the status quo in strategic contracting and negotiations and the successful implementation of business strategy or policy.
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Palgrave Macmillan imprint to continue as part of Springer Nature
Global academic and business publisher Palgrave Macmillan has announced that the Palgrave Macmillan imprint will continue as part of Springer Nature, publishing books, monographs and journals in professional, business, finance and the Humanities and Social Sciences (HSS). The Palgrave higher education imprint will also continue as part of Springer Nature.
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New portal for Canadian clinical research capabilities launched
The Canadian Clinical Trials Asset Map (CCTAM), a pan-Canadian database showcasing Canada’s clinical research capacities, was launched in front of an audience of scientists, researchers and policymakers, by Senator Kelvin K. Ogilvie. The CCTAM will help Canada regain its position as a leading destination for clinical trials in the global marketplace, providing a comprehensive picture of the breadth and depth of Canada’s clinical research assets.
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Knowledge Exchange project to develop sustainable infrastructure to support open access
With the rapid growth in open-access policies and mandates across Europe and worldwide, shared infrastructure and services are now critical to the efficiency and effectiveness of open access publication. These services include software, platforms, information and data services, and support and advice, without which it would be difficult or impossible for open-access publication at the scale now required by funders to be delivered. The Knowledge Exchange, an international partnership of organisations in the UK, Netherlands, Germany, Finland and Denmark, has therefore commissioned a project, led by Research Consulting, to clarify and raise awareness of these dependencies.
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University of Leicester opts for Ex Libris Alma and Primo
Library automation services provider Ex Libris Group has announced that the University of Leicester has chosen the Ex Libris Alma unified resource management solution to streamline business processes and workflows. The University has also selected the Ex Libris Primo® discovery and delivery solution to maximize the discoverability of resources while improving the user experience and user satisfaction.
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ASEE First Bell – Breaking news in the engineering and technology field

Leading the News

Korean Team Wins DARPA Robotics Challenge.

The New York Times  (6/7, Markoff, Subscription Publication) reports, “A team of roboticists from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology claimed a $2 million prize on Saturday” in DARPA’s contest “for developing a mobile robot capable of operating in hazardous environments.” Teams’ robots were judged on “their ability to complete eight tasks, including driving a vehicle, opening a door, operating a portable drill, turning a valve and climbing stairs, all in the space of an hour.”

RoboSimian Tackles DARPA Robotics Challenge Finals Over The Weekend. SPACE  (6/5, Howell) continued coverage of the Jet Propulsion Laboratory’s RoboSimian participation in the DARPA Robotics Challenge Finals over the weekend. In a statement , JPL officials wrote, “RoboSimian and its competitors will be faced with such tasks as driving a vehicle and getting out of it, opening a door, cutting a hole in a wall, opening a valve and crossing a field of debris.”

Popular Science  (6/5, Atherton) posted video of some of the competitors, including the RoboSimian.

BetaBoston (MA)  (6/5, Bray) also covered the story with a very brief mention of the JPL entry.

Higher Education

NASA Works With UPR Students Developing Satellite.

Agencia EFE (ESP)  (6/5) reported that University of Puerto Rico (UPR) students are working with experts from NASA and RockSat X on a small satellite that is designed to capture micrometeorites and measure the strength of impacts. The spacecraft is scheduled to launch from Wallops Island Flight Facility on August 11. The satellite, which will orbit Earth for one year, culminates five years of research and development by UPR students and other universities. NASA administered the program as a part of its overarching goal to orient academic institutions toward NASA’s research and development activities and other agencies involved with science, technology, engineering, and math.

Corinthian Debt Strike Growing.

US News & World Report  (6/5, Bidwell) reports on the significant growth in the movement of former Corinthian Colleges students “refusing to pay back their college loans as a form of protest aimed at pressuring federal officials to cancel their debt.” From an original total of 15 students, there are now possibly as many as 1,200, “some of whom are graduates of other schools and are acting in solidarity with the Corinthian strikers.” The piece explains that the students say that Corinthian defrauded them, and briefly details the firm’s implosion after ED “placed it under an increased level of oversight for falsifying job placement data and allegedly altering grades and attendance records.” The article notes that Under Secretary Ted Mitchell recently said that “the 16,000 students who were affected by the sudden closure of Corinthian campuses in April can have their debts discharged only if they forgo any credits they earned at a Corinthian school.”

Inside Higher Ed  (6/5) reports that the Debt Collective, which supports the students, “said that nearly 200 former Corinthian students were now participating in the debt strike,” while over “1,200 graduates of other colleges have pledged to stop repaying their federal loans in solidarity if the Education Department doesn’t provide the widespread debt forgiveness the Corinthian students are seeking.” Students have sent Education Secretary Arne Duncan “proposed language of an order wiping out the existing loan debt of all former Corinthian students.”

ECMC CEO Explains Corinthian Campus Purchase.

PBS’ NewsHour  (6/8) reports on the purchase in February of some 53 schools formerly owned by Corinthian Colleges Inc. by Educational Credit Management Corporation, “a guarantor of student loans that specialized in collecting from students on the precipice of bankruptcy.” The article focuses on ECMC’s CEO, David Hawn, who was at first hesitant to make the purchase. The piece notes that in a speech before the National Council for Higher Education Resources, Hawn “sought to explain ECMC’s reasons for buying the Corinthian campuses, its early plans for turning the failing campuses into going concerns, and ‘why I’m not as crazy as you might think’ to create the nation’s largest nonprofit career college provider.”

Battle Intensifies Between Wisconsin Lawmakers, Professors Over Tenure.

The Wall Street Journal  (6/6, Peters, Korn, Subscription Publication) reports on a sharpening battle over higher education in Wisconsin pitting professors at the University of Wisconsin against state lawmakers and Gov. Scott Walker over the faculty tenure process. The Journal said the lawmakers want to change the tenure process among rising tuition and possible weaken it and make layoffs easier while the faculty say tenure is critical at universities to protect professors that may have unpopular opinions or teachings.

NYTimes Criticizes Walker For Tenure Proposal. In an editorial, the New York Times  (6/6, Board, Subscription Publication) criticized Walker’s “proposal for weakening tenure at Wisconsin’s highly respected state university system and undermining the faculty’s role in campus governance,” noting that while it will “appeal to conservative voters whose support he needs to win the Republican presidential nomination,” the proposal could “damage the university, perhaps irreparably.” The Times concluded that if the legislature moves forward with “Rubber-stamping” Walkers proposal, it “would set the state university on a course that Wisconsinites could regret for decades to come.”

Leading Charter Networks Continue Supporting Students In College.

The NPR  (6/7) “Code Switch” blog reports that while many “top charter schools” have near-perfect graduation rates, many of their students who enroll in college after graduating never get their degrees. The piece notes that some leading charter networks, like the Knowledge Is Power Program and the Harlem Children’s Zone, are “not only helping their graduates get into college, but are also counseling them once they are on university campuses.”

From ASEE
Microinequities: The Power of Small
ASEE members get a steep discount on this engaging webinar when using code ASEE2015.

ASEE’s Annual Conference in Seattle
…is right around the corner!

ASEE’s Diversity Committee Newsletter
The Spring 2015 edition is now online.

Global Developments

ASU To Establish Energy Partnership Center In Pakistan.

Yuma (AZ) News Now  (6/8, Gonzalez) reports that Arizona State University officials were to “join a ceremony in Islamabad on June 3 to officially launch a five-year energy studies partnership with” Pakistan’s National University of Science and Technology in Islamabad and the University of Engineering and Technology-Peshawar. According to the piece, USAID “awarded the $18 million project to ASU to establish the Partnership Center for Advanced Studies in Energy (PCASE),” within the U.S.-Pakistan Centers for Advanced Studies in Energy, Water, Agriculture and Food Security.

Industry News

Rosekind: NHTSA Deserved Much Of The Blame For GM Ignition Switch Problem.

Reuters  (6/6, Morgan) reports that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released an internal report on Friday that acknowledged concerns with the agency’s investigation of General Motors ignition switch problems that led to 104 deaths when the air bags did not deploy. NHTSA Administrator Mark Rosekind said the agency would seek changes in protocol that will increase defect-related crash investigations.

The Washington Post  (6/6, Halsey) reports that in a “scathing self-examination,” NHTSA acknowledged on Friday that for “years they failed to adequately address a 57-cent defect in an ignition switch that killed 109 people and injured more than 200 others.” In a conference call, Rosekind said the NHTSA “deserved much of the blame for the deadly problem.” The Post says Rosekind added that, “If there is a single explanation for why GM’s ignition defect went undetected for too long, it is that this agency believed that it understood how GM’s ignition and air-bag systems worked and we believed information from GM confirmed our beliefs.”

Oil Drilling In Montana Crumbles.

The AP  (6/7) reports, “Montana has been without a single major oil drilling rig since April, and industry observers attribute the inactivity to low oil prices.” Ben Jones, a petroleum engineer for the Board of Oil and Gas, “said small operators who drill shallow wells with small equipment often go uncounted,” the article reports, adding that “the production of those wells can be as little as one barrel a day.” Baker Hughes Investor Relations reported that Montana oil drilling activity tapped out in mid-March, against six oil rigs one year earlier and 14 in October 2014. In the past 12 months, state oil rig numbers were highest in October, at 14. “We do show oil and gas extraction wages decreasing year over year in the total amount of wages paid,” said Barbra Wagner, chief economist for the Montana Bureau of Labor and Analysis. “It could be that they didn’t lay people off in the fourth quarter, but they weren’t giving them overtime.”

Engineering and Public Policy

Hill Analysis: Divide Over Fracking Falls Along Party Lines.

The Hill  (6/6, Cama) examined the political divide over fracking in red and blue states. While some liberal states such as New York and Maryland have banned fracking, some conservative states “such as Texas and Oklahoma have gone the opposite route, moving to ensure that local towns and cities cannot outlaw the practice in their communities.” Fearing “a patchwork of rules for fracking across municipal lines,” industry groups “want the regulatory questions to be settled on a state-by-state basis.”

Companies Face Questions About Possible Link Between Fracking, Earthquakes. During a Wednesday hearing in Texas, oil and gas companies faced questions about the possible link between fracking and a recent spate of quakes near Fort Worth, the Wall Street Journal  (6/7, Ailworth, Subscription Publication) reports.

WSJournal Blasts Ethanol, Government Support For It.

In an editorial, the Wall Street Journal  (6/8, Subscription Publication) is broadly critical of ethanol and government support for it, suggesting the liquid destroys engines and gas pumps, increases dependence on foreign oil, and increases carbon emissions. The Journal criticizes Agriculture Department grants for building pumps to service cars that can run on gasoline with more than 10 percent ethanol as corporate welfare and calls for the end of ethanol mandates.

Elementary/Secondary Education

Florida District Receives $100,000 STEM Grant.

The Tampa (FL) Tribune  (6/7, Fox) reports that the Pasco County School District in Florida has received a $100,000 grant to create STEM laboratories at Cypress and Moon Lake Elementary schools by 2016. The grant was financed by Duke Energy, who gave $50,000, and the Pasco Education Foundation, which matched the donation. Pasco Superintendent Kurt Browning thanked school board representative Alison Crumbley for putting the meeting together for the grant.

Tech Company CEO Asks Companies To Boost Schools, STEM Literacy.

Interdigital president and CEO Bill Merritt argued in an op-ed in the Wilmington (DE) News Journal  (6/6) that while “everybody knows” that schools are “one of the most important keys to economic success,” and that an ED study showing the “growing shortage” of workers fit for STEM careers means schools and society are “under-performing.” He asks “every American company” involved in science and technology to “find ways they can make a difference” in schools and in the community and asks the federal and state governments to grow the potential for STEM education. He concludes that Congress should create “pro-innovation policies” and that partnerships between companies and education centers and smart policy will lead to “a stronger, more prosperous and connected world.”

Friday’s Lead Stories

EPA Study Finds Little Fracking Impact On Groundwater.
ASEE Member To Chair Angelo State University Civil Engineering Department.
University Of Texas Researchers Developing Robot Manufacturing System.
FPL, FIU Partner On Innovative Solar Research Facility.
EPA Expected To Ramp Up Regulation Of Airliner Emissions.
Stonewall Jackson Middle School Presents Projects To NASA Officials.

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Scope – Knowledgespeak: STM Industry Daily News Alert

John Wiley & Sons, Inc. launches six-month pilot program in partnership with F1000Research
Publisher John Wiley & Sons, Inc. has announced the launch of a six-month pilot program in partnership with F1000Research. The pilot offers authors whose articles do not meet the specific criteria for publication in five Wiley journals the option to submit their manuscript to F1000Research, giving authors a streamlined process to get their work quickly and easily published online.
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Growing support for statement against Elsevier policy
In the last two weeks, over 1600 individuals and organisations from 52 countries around the world have signed a statement opposing Elsevier’s new article sharing and hosting policy, underscoring that many in the scholarly community do not support the new policy. The policy imposes unacceptably long embargo periods for making articles available, the vast majority of which range from 12 months to 4 years after publication.
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Wolters Kluwer partners with the Federación Nacional de Clínicas Privadas to improve clinical decision-making in Spain
Healthcare information provider Wolters Kluwer has announced a new partnership with the Federación Nacional de Clínicas Privadas (FNCP), an organisation representing over 550 of the private healthcare institutions in Spain. The collaboration reflects Wolters Kluwer’s focus on fostering growth in the Spanish market and broadening adoption of UpToDate®, the clinical decision support resource used by more than 1 million doctors worldwide.
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ProQuest presents at the CALIS Annual Conference
CALIS (China Academic Library and Information System) recently hosted its annual conference on May 12, 2015, in Shanghai. During the recent conference, Allan Lu, VP of ProQuest research tools, services, and platform, presented to nearly 500 librarians. His presentation, ‘Maximizing Library Resource Utilization with Platform Innovations and Leading Business Models,’ touched on recent improvements ProQuest has implemented to improve the user experience, how the company continues to support libraries and what’s next.
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University of Florida partners with YBP Library Services for collection development
The University of Florida (UF) has agreed to partner with YBP Library Services for YBP’s integrated digital and print discovery and fulfillment services. YBP will serve as a key vendor for academic content for the University and will provide acquisition and collection development to UF via its GOBI interface.
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Future Medicine and Future Science now discoverable across ReadCube platform
Future Science Group (FSG), consisting of two imprints, Future Medicine and Future Science, has partnered with Boston-based publishing technology company ReadCube to increase the discoverability and enhancement of their articles within the ReadCube web, desktop and mobile environment. All 28 titles from Future Medicine and 7 from Future Science have been deep-indexed for easy discovery across ReadCube’s search engines and recommendation feeds.
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American Society of Clinical Oncology invites authors to submit papers to new OA journal, Journal of Global Oncology
The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and Dr. David Kerr, founding Editor-in-Chief of the Society’s new Journal of Global Oncology, are inviting authors to submit their next article to this new online-only, open access journal. First articles are scheduled to be published in the third quarter of 2015. Details about Journal of Global Oncology and article submissions are online at http://www.GlobalOncologyJournal.org.
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Duke University selects Altmetric to monitor broader impact of research
Duke University, a private research university, has selected the Altmetric for Institutions platform to offer its faculty and administrators further insight into the online dissemination and engagement surrounding its research. Implementation is now in progress and expected to be completed in the next few weeks.
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ACRL appoints Wendi Arant Kaspar as College & Research Libraries editor
The Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL) has announced the appointment of Wendi Arant Kaspar to the post of editor for College & Research Libraries (C&RL). Kaspar will serve a three-year term beginning July 1, 2016. She succeeds Scott Walter, university librarian at DePaul University in Chicago, as C&RL editor. Walter will work closely with Kaspar over the next year to ensure a smooth transition.
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Corrigendum
This is with reference to the news alert titled “SpringerOpen expands Japanese society open access journals portfolio” covered in the News Section of Knowledgespeak (dated Jun 4, 2015). Readers may please note that the news article has been revised on company request. The revised version of the news article is Here .
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ASEE First Bell – Breaking news in the engineering and technology field

Leading the News

EPA Study Finds Little Fracking Impact On Groundwater.

The EPA yesterday released its long-awaited study of the impact of fracking on groundwater, finding that so far it has had little impact. While most media coverage highlighted the main findings, they also tended to note the secondary warning of potential damage in their lead paragraphs (and often lead sentences). Beyond that, oil groups hailed the findings, while green groups downplayed them.

The Los Angeles Times  (6/5, Yardley) reports that while fracking has “stirred deep concerns about its risks to the environment,” it “has not caused significant damage to drinking water,” according to the EPA, though it “does pose risks.” The EPA’s report, based on a “detailed, four-year review,” found that while fracking operations “have not led to widespread, systemic impacts on drinking water resources, there are potential vulnerabilities in the water lifecycle that could impact drinking water.”

The New York Times  (6/5, Davenport, Subscription Publication) says that the EPA, in its “long-awaited draft report,” has “found no evidence that the contentious technique of oil and gas extraction has had a widespread effect on the nation’s water supply.” However, the report “notes several specific instances in which the chemicals used in fracking led to contamination of water, including drinking water wells, but it emphasized that the number of cases was small compared with the number of fracked wells.”

The AP  (6/5, Daly) says that the report found that fracking “has not caused widespread harm” but “warned of potential contamination” if “safeguards are not maintained.” The EPA “identified several vulnerabilities to drinking water resources, including fracking’s effect on drought-stricken areas; inadequately cased or cemented wells resulting in below-ground migration of gases and liquids; inadequately treated wastewater discharged into drinking water resources; and spills of hydraulic fluids and wastewater.”

The Wall Street Journal  (6/5, Gold, Harder, Subscription Publication) reports that Thomas Burke, the deputy assistant administrator of the EPA’s office of research and development, said, “Hydraulic fracturing activities in the U.S. are carried out in a way that have not led to widespread, systematic impact on drinking water resources. In fact, the number of documented impacts to drinking water is relatively low when compared to the number of fractured wells.”

The Washington Times  (6/5, Wolfgang) says that the “landmark” study “represents a serious blow to environmentalists and other vocal opponents of U.S. oil and gas production.” Politico  (6/4, Schor) reports that in response, Erik Milito of the American Petroleum Institute said, “After more than five years and millions of dollars, the evidence gathered by EPA confirms what the agency has already acknowledged and what the oil and gas industry has known. Hydraulic fracturing is being done safely under the strong environmental stewardship of state regulators and industry best practices.” However, the group Earthworks “said it was drawing the opposite conclusion,” saying that the EPA “confirmed” that “fracking pollutes drinking water” and calling for government action. Reuters  (6/5, Volcovici, Gardner) similar reports that Amy Mall of the Natural Resources Defense Council said, “There are still significant gaps in the scientific understanding of fracking. This study is site-specific and limited, as EPA has explained, which makes it impossible to fully understand all the risks at this time.” Mark Brownstein of the Environmental Defense Fund downplayed the importance of the study, saying, “Relentless focus on these issues by regulators and industry is critical.”

WSJournal Hails Finding. In an editorial, the Wall Street Journal  (6/5, Subscription Publication) says that even the EPA now accepts that fracking is safe, as many have often argued, and is surprised that the agency didn’t look to set the groundwork for Federal regulation of the industry. The Journal says that the findings show that politicians, such as New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo, who have pushed fracking bans, have just been engaging in politics.

Higher Education

ASEE Member To Chair Angelo State University Civil Engineering Department.

The San Angelo (TX) Standard-Times  (6/5) reports that William Kitch, currently a California State Polytechnic University-Pomona professor of engineering, will chair the Angelo State University Department of Civil Engineering when it opens in the fall. Kitch is a member of the American Society for Engineering Education and conducts peer reviews for the ASEE Annual Conference.

Wisconsin Governor Looks To Increase State Control Over University System.

The New York Times  (6/5, Davey, Lewin, Subscription Publication) reports that Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, who “began building a national profile” by fighting public employee unions, has “turned his sights to a different element of the public sector: state universities.” Walker and state legislative Republicans “have called for changes that would give a board largely picked by the governor far more control over tenure and curriculum in the University of Wisconsin System,” though the critics said the proposal “would burnish Mr. Walker’s conservative credentials as he is scrutinized by likely primary voters.”

Texas Universities Are Looking To Work Around Concealed Carry Law.

The Los Angeles Times  (6/5, Shepherd) reports that Texas university officials are “already thinking of ways to limit” a new law to allow concealed carry of guns on campuses. Some faculty and students have rallied against the bill, but others “seem to have embraced” amendments letting schools mark some areas of the school “off-limits.” State Sen. Donna Campbell has said that it is “irresponsible” to “disarm the good guys where violent offenders disregard the law,” while University of Texas professor William Spelman counters that claims gun carry will lower crime rates or allow civilians to stop gunmen “are based entirely on anecdotal evidence” and claims the law would likely foster accidents and grow suicide rates. Nevertheless, he concludes that the bill “is mostly of rhetorical value for lawmakers” and is “not going to change much at UT.” The law enters into effect the month on the 50th anniversary of a mass shooting at the University of Texas at Austin.

Navient Loan Claims Gave “Black Eye” To The ED.

The Street  (6/5, Sandman) continues coverage of the repayment of student loans by Navient to servicemen, noting that the case “gave a black eye” to the ED. Acting Associate Attorney General Stuart Delery said that the compensation gives “much deserved financial relief” to those overcharged and notes that federal loans it manages for the ED were also part of the lawsuit.

From ASEE
Microinequities: The Power of Small
ASEE members get a steep discount on this engaging webinar when using code ASEE2015.
ASEE’s Annual Conference in Seattle
…is right around the corner!

ASEE’s Diversity Committee Newsletter
The Spring 2015 edition is now online.

Research and Development

University Of Texas Researchers Developing Robot Manufacturing System.

The Dallas Morning News  (6/3) reports that researchers at the University of Texas at Arlington are developing at “robotic machine” that “may help bring offshore manufacturing — and related jobs — back to the United States.” The paper explains that the “flexible manufacturing system…assembles parts slightly larger than a thimble,” and could theoretically “be adapted to different products of different sizes, reducing the manufacturing costs and allowing goods built overseas to be made in the United States.” The article notes that the UTA Research Institute (UTARI) “is focused on developing and commercializing innovative technology.”

Santa Clara University Students Create Oculus Rift Program To Treat Fears.

CBS News  (6/5) reports in a video that two students at Santa Clara University are using Oculus Rift technology to allow people with phobias such as a fear of heights to overcome these fears. The video notes that virtual reality is “growing up fast” and is sinking in price to become available to more groups.

Delaware Researchers Receive Military Awards.

The Wilmington (DE) News Journal  (6/4, McMichael) reports in its Delaware Defense blog that Mohsen Badiey and Renu Tripathi have won awards from the Department of Defense to buy equipment to bolster what the DoD calls “cutting edge defense research and associated graduate student research training.” Over 225 researchers from 111 colleges and universities will get $67.8 million for research. Tripathi will investigate 3D imaging, photon counting, and laser use. Badiey will be studying arctic shelf instruments and oceanography.

University Of New Mexico Develops Concussion Monitoring Technology.

The Albuquerque (NM) Journal  (6/5, Robinson-Avila) reports that a researcher with the University of New Mexico’s Center for Biomedical Engineering developed wearable, wireless sensors that can transmit data in real time to monitor head trauma in contact sports. The technology will be marketed by Pressure Analysis Company. Scott Sibbett, a research professor in UNM’s Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, led the effort to develop the technology. It was tested by Los Alamos National Laboratory scientists Brian Anderson through the New Mexico Small Business Assistance Program.

Industry News

FPL, FIU Partner On Innovative Solar Research Facility.

The Miami Herald  (6/5) reports Florida International University and Florida Power & Light Company “announced a new partnership Thursday to build a commercial-scale distributed solar power facility that will both generate electricity for FPL’s 4.8 million customers and serve as an innovative research operation.” The project will involve “the installation of more than 5,700 solar panels on 23 canopy-like structures that will be built over the summer in the parking lot of the university’s Engineering Center, just north of FIU’s Modesto A. Maidique Campus in west Miami-Dade.”

The South Florida Sun Sentinel  (6/5, Hemlock) reports faculty and students “from the FIU’s College of Engineering and Computing will study the workings of 342,000-square-foot array that can produce up to 1.6 MW of solar energy, collaborating” with staff from FPL. For instance they will look “at how energy production and distribution varies with clouds, thunderstorms and other changes in weather.” In a news release FPL’s chief executive Eric Silagy said, “As the economics of solar continue to improve, we look forward to harnessing more and more energy from the sun.”

Engineering and Public Policy

EPA Expected To Ramp Up Regulation Of Airliner Emissions.

Scientific American  (6/5) reports that the EPA is turning its focus toward airlines’ greenhouse gas emissions, and is expected to step up regulation of “the aviation industry’s carbon footprint as soon as this week, by issuing what’s called an endangerment finding.” The move would “set the stage for an eventual new regulation limiting airplanes’ emissions.”

White House Backs New Rail Safety Measures By End Of Year.

Reuters  (6/5, Morgan) reports that on Thursday, the White House backed a requirement that the rail industry install new safety equipment by the end of this year. That puts the Administration at odds with a bipartisan Congressional effort, which looks to give the rail industry more time. A White House official said, “We agree with the Federal Railroad Administration that the December 31 deadline is important and that the Department of Transportation should enforce that deadline.”

Elementary/Secondary Education

Stonewall Jackson Middle School Presents Projects To NASA Officials.

The Roanoke (VA) Times  (6/4, Gregory) reports that last week, Stonewall Jackson Middle School students presented their concept for a lunar greenhouse to senior NASA officials as part of “a STEM Challenge for schools…designated 21st Century Community Learning Centers by the U.S. Department of Education.” One of the students participating in the event said she would like to work for NASA one day.

Louisiana Math Camp Teachers Students Science Concepts.

The Baton Rouge (LA) Advocate  (6/5, Duchmann) reports that incoming seventh-grade students at the Advancing Mathematics Achievement Camp in Louisiana’s Abbeville High School have been participating in aluminum foil sailboat races as a way to encourage students to study surface area. Students work with teachers and University of Louisiana at Lafayette students on the program. The camp received funding from the NSF.

San Antonio High School Students Receiving Concurrent Associate’s Degrees.

The San Antonio Express-News  (6/5, Malik) reports that 9,000 graduating high school students in the San Antonio area will receive college credit through the Alamo Colleges system, while hundreds of those will have associate’s degrees. Many of the students will have workforce certificates as well. The Alamo Academies program won the 2015 Bellwether Award for innovation in community colleges.

Indiana High School Students Create STEM Promotion Plan.

The Goshen (IN) News  (6/5, Hirsch) reports that Indiana’s Anderson High School students unveiled a “comprehensive plan” for making Indiana a leader in math and science Wednesday. The plan calls for the US to start math and science in first grade, spend one day each year on professional development for STEM subjects, create a required STEM career exploration class for middle schools, add two credits to both science and math requirements, make honors students study pre-calculus, create new internship and co-op opportunities for STEM students, and strengthen requirements for proposed math teachers. In the words of the Goshen News, the proposal is intended to help the country “retain its competitive edge, boost earnings, and lower unemployment,” according to the students. State Sen. Tim Lanane was interested in the proposal and suggested students present to the district’s board of trustees, the state BOE and legislators.

Idaho State BOE To Host STEM Summit.

The Spokane (WA) Spokesman-Review  (6/4, Russell) reports in its Eye On Boise blog that the Idaho State BOE is hosting a STEM Summit at Boise State University June 10. The summit will join teachers, administration officials, students, business representatives, lawmakers, and advocates to develop the state’s “STEM talent pipeline from education to employment.” WhiteCloud Analytics CEO Bob Lokken will be the featured speaker during the free event, which will go from 7:30 AM to 5 PM. Gov. Butch Otter will speak at the opening of the event.

Thursday’s Lead Stories

Harvard School Of Engineering To Receive $400 Million Endowment.
University Of Houston Receives $1.2 Million In STEM Scholarships.
Warner: Technology’s Impact On Workforce Should Be Part Of National Debate.
Volkswagen Signs Agreement To Increase Electric Vehicle Production In China.
Manufacturers Using More Advanced Robots.
Republicans Take Aim At EPA’s Ozone Regulation.
Atlanta Area Teachers To Participate In STEM Professional Development.

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Scope – Knowledgespeak: STM Industry Daily News Alert

SpringerOpen expands Japanese society open access journals portfolio
Surgical Case Reports is now being published by SpringerOpen and it will soon be joined by JA Clinical Reports and IPSJ Transactions on Computer Vision and Applications. The addition of these journals to the portfolio adds to the growing number of Japanese society open access journals published by SpringerOpen in fields such as clinical medicine, life sciences and computer science.
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Thieme announces new research project examining authors’ perceptions of APC and Pay What You Want as a business model for academic journals
Medical and scientific publisher Thieme has announced a collaboration with the Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität of Munich’s School of Management and Department of Economics in a groundbreaking research project. The project involves examining authors’ perceptions of Article Processing Fees (APC) and Pay What You Want (PWYW) as a business model for academic journals.
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SAGE set to publish Evolutionary Psychology
Academic publisher SAGE has announced that it will begin publishing Evolutionary Psychology, an open access journal focused on the evolutionary origins of human behaviour, beginning July, 2015. First published in 2003, Evolutionary Psychology is a leading resource for scientists, researchers, and clinicians across the social, behavioural and life sciences.
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TechTarget appoints veteran Wall Street data scientist Chuck Alvarez as Chief Data Officer
Technology media company TechTarget, Inc. has hired Chuck Alvarez as Chief Data Officer. In his new role, Alvarez will focus on TechTarget’s Big Data strategy and new initiatives that will leverage TechTarget’s Deal Data to deliver rich demand-side research, analytics and insight to enterprise Information Technology (IT) professionals, IT vendors and institutional investors.
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OpenStax College, ASM Press partner to offer free introductory-level title in spring 2016
Rice University-based publisher OpenStax College and the American Society for Microbiology Press have announced a partnership to produce Microbiology, a new introductory-level textbook due for release in spring 2016 that will be free online and low-cost in print. The collaborative publishing agreement – the first for each partner – will produce a peer-reviewed, open-copyright textbook.
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Three major German consortia select Ex Libris’ Alma resource management service
Library automation services Ex Libris Group has announced that the Bibliotheksservice-Zentrum Baden-Württemberg (BSZ), the Verbundzentrale des Gemeinsamen Bibliotheksverbunds (VZG), and the Hochschulbibliothekszentrum des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen (hbz) consortia have selected the Alma® resource management service as the technology infrastructure for their new Common Bibliographic Data Zone. As part of the collaborative project, the three consortia will form a joint consortium to define, create, and maintain the Common Bibliographic Data Zone.
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ASEE First Bell – Breaking news in the engineering and technology field

Leading the News

Harvard School Of Engineering To Receive $400 Million Endowment.

The New York Times  (6/4, Lewin, Subscription Publication) reports that billionaire hedge fund manager John A. Paulson, a Harvard Business School graduate, has given the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences a $400 million endowment, “the largest gift in the university’s history.” The article describes Paulson’s career in finance, and notes that his endowment “helped the university’s $6.5 billion fund-raising campaign, which started publicly in September 2013.” The announcement of the gift sparked “a chorus of criticism…much of it mocking Mr. Paulson for choosing to add to Harvard’s wealth rather than extend his generosity to causes or institutions that help the needy.”

The Washington Post  (6/3) reports that the school will be renamed in Paulson’s honor, noting that it has “recently developed wonders such as an implantable cancer vaccine and a robot that can build itself from a flat sheet.”

The Bloomberg News  (6/3, Lauerman) reports that Harvard said the gift will support “research, faculty development and financial aid.” Paulson said in a statement that “he hopes his gift will make the engineering school ‘a 21st-century engineering leader.’” Boston  (6/3, Wilder) also covers this story.

WSJournal Derides Those Who Take Issue With Paulson’s Harvard Donation. In an editorial, the Wall Street Journal  (6/4, Subscription Publication) criticizes those who mock billionaire John Paulson’s donation of $400 million to Harvard’s School of Engineer and Applied Sciences. Some don’t like the way Paulson made his money while others say that Harvard already has enough, but the Journal says that Americans should be pleased he has chosen to give it away at all.

Higher Education

University Of Houston Receives $1.2 Million In STEM Scholarships.

The Houston Business Journal  (6/4, Smith, Subscription Publication) reports that the University of Houston has been awarded a “fat investment” of $1.2 million to fund STEM scholarships by the NSF. One grant has been awarded to Xiaojing Yuan, who will receive $639,895 to allot to around 40 engineering technology students over five years. Rakesh Verma, meanwhile, received $583,597 for 15 computer science students over three years. Workshops and field trips are also included. Houston is ranked ninth for STEM graduates, with mean salaries for STEM employees around $94,800.

Congress Should Consider Creating Pell Grant Supplement Funds.

Stephen Burd writes in a column for the Hechinger Report  (6/3) that colleges have “little incentive” to enroll poorer students, and many colleges are currently using merit aid to ensure they receive the best students rather than given financial help to poorer students. Burd claims Congress could “begin to reverse these trends” if it gave colleges that increased the proportion of students they serve that receive Pell Grants supplementary funding, similar to the original Pell Grant system’s “cost of education allowances” program from the 1970s. The “Pell Bonus” program also would help “financially strapped” community colleges and non-selective four-year college, he claims. Burd concludes that while the proposal “has begun to catch the attention of policymakers,” and while President Obama has proposed a similar plan, “Republican Congressional leadership has yet to express much interest in the idea,” which is “too bad.”

Experts Urge Congress To Work To Slow Increase in Cost Of College.

McClatchy  (6/4, Baccellieri) reports that with college costs rising, Congress is “taking a fresh look at federal financial aid and considering ways to stop states from driving up tuition at their public universities.” At a hearing of the Senate HELP Committee on Wednesday, higher education experts warned that “more comprehensive financial aid policies will be useless if costs continue to skyrocket,” and “urged lawmakers” to “hold states accountable for funding public colleges and universities.”

From ASEE
ASEE Member Comments on Strategic Doing
President Nick Altiero encourages all member to read and respond to the Board’s “Strategic Doing” beta document. (Member login required.)  Open through June 1.

Microinequities: The Power of Small
ASEE members get a steep discount on this engaging webinar when using code ASEE2015.

ASEE’s Annual Conference in Seattle
…is right around the corner!

Workforce

Warner: Technology’s Impact On Workforce Should Be Part Of National Debate.

USA Today  (6/4, Page) interviews Sen. Mark Warner, “who earned a fortune as a tech entrepreneur before entering politics,” about how politics is changing “in the age of Uber.” Warner said, “This next generation, where they are in the ‘sharing economy,’ the millennials, 80 million strong, they have no safety net at all: no unemployment, no workman’s comp, no disability. Somebody may be doing very, very well as an Etsy seller and Airbnb user and Uber driver and part-time consultant…but if they hit a rough patch, they have nothing to stop them until they fall, frankly, back upon government assistance programs.” Warner is not seeking national office in 2016, but “hopes to spark a debate…about how to respond to the complications of the new American workforce.”

Global Developments

Volkswagen Signs Agreement To Increase Electric Vehicle Production In China.

Reuters  (6/3) reports Volkswagen said it reached a cooperation agreement with SAIC Motor Corporation to increase production, research and development of electric cars in China. Volkswagen will localize over 15 different electric vehicle models in China over the next four years plus expand the primary plant of the joint venture SVW in Anting.

MarketWatch  (6/4, Houston-Waesch) notes when counting its joint ventures in China, Volkswagen delivered about 3.7 million vehicles in the country in 2014, a 12% increase from 2013.

According to Investors Business Daily  (6/4), China’s EV market “is heating up as the government promotes cleaner-technology vehicles to help ease pollution.”

Industry News

Manufacturers Using More Advanced Robots.

The Wall Street Journal  (6/3, Hagerty, Subscription Publication) reports that manufacturers are rolling out a new more advanced generation of robots that are more agile and work in a more cooperative manner. The new robots are safer in their interactions with humans, and could impact how companies and nations compete with each other.

Shipments Of Wearables Triple During First Quarter Of 2015.

The CNET News  (6/3, Whitney) reports a report released Wednesday by market researcher IDC found that “during the first quarter of the year, a total of 11.4 million wearable devices shipped around the world, triple the 3.8 million shipped during the same quarter in 2014.” The gain was notable “as the first quarter usually sees a dip in sales and shipments for tech products following the strong holiday season.” The wearables market has “taken time to catch on among consumers,” but now more products are being introduced, customers enjoy a “greater diversity, triggering more interest.” IDC senior research analyst Jitesh Ubrani also cited lower prices as reason for the growth in a press release: “We now see over 40 percent of the devices priced under $100, and that’s one reason why the top five vendors have been able to grow their dominance from two-thirds of the market in the first quarter of last year to three-quarters this quarter.” It remains to be seen how consumers will respond to the Apple Watch and its premium pricing.

The Los Angeles Times  (6/3, Chang) notes the top five wearable vendors in the quarter were: Fitbit, Xiaomi, Garmin, Samsung and Jawbone.

Engineering and Public Policy

Republicans Take Aim At EPA’s Ozone Regulation.

McClatchy  (6/4, Adams) reports that Republicans are opposing the EPA’s proposal to introduce a new standard for ground-level ozone, announced in November. The Administration “said doing so would help curtail the rising problem of asthma and other respiratory ailments,” but Republicans, along with “business and industry in general,” have “pushed back.” For example, Sen. James Inhofe said the proposal “will have negligible environmental benefits, is based on questionable health benefits and comes with unequivocal economic costs.” The Washington (DC) Examiner  (6/4, Colman) reports that the Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee, of which Sen. Inhofe is the chairman, previewed three bills one Wednesday that would “delay or handcuff” the regulations, but says that nothing has been committed to and the chances of passage before the rules take effect are “slim.”

Opinion: “Energy Freedom” Reforms Needed. Writing in The Hill  (6/4, Bradley), Institute for Energy Research CEO Robert Bradley, Jr. argues that America can become the world’s largest oil and gas producer by passing reforms to ensure “energy freedom.” He calls for increased access for drilling and fracking on Federal land, blocking new ozone regulation, and preventing new caps on methane emissions.

Column: Renewable Fuels Will Move Forward In US.

In his column for Reuters  (6/4, Stock), Harvard economics professor and former member of the President’s Council of Economic Advisers James Stock argues that the narrative over the EPA’s update of the Renewable Fuels Standard should shift from a win-or-lose mentality by the American petroleum industry to the opportunity to expand renewable energy usage in the world’s largest energy market. He argues that the most practical way forward on the RFS is to expand usage of cellulosic ethanol and for research to allow the industry to break the E10 Blend Wall.

Democrats Look To Confront GOP Over Transportation Funding.

Politico  (6/4, Caygle, Everett) reports that Democrats are “threatening an aggressive confrontation” with the GOP over Federal highway funding, “foreshadowing yet another round of brinkmanship with the GOP and raising the specter of a temporary shutdown of transportation construction sites nationwide.” Democrats in both chambers are “weighing a hard-line strategy” designed to force the GOP to hold a “series of painful short-term highway extensions” if they don’t address the Highway Trust Fund’s “long-term funding woes.”

Elementary/Secondary Education

Atlanta Area Teachers To Participate In STEM Professional Development.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution  (6/4, French) reports that teachers in the Atlanta area will work with the Metropolitan Regional Educational Service Agency and Discovery Education for tips and training on creating STEM curricula on Friday at Cobb County, Georgia’s Marietta High School. The free event will provide professional development and will feature 130 attendees.

Wednesday’s Lead Stories

Environmental Groups Turn To Court To Challenge Arctic Ocean Drilling.
Illinois AG Calls On Duncan To Protect Student Loan Consumers From Scammers.
USAF Working With DARPA On Hypersonic Weaponry.
US Firms Look To Game H-1B Visa Lottery.
European Oil Companies Promote Replacement Of Coal.
Former Tesla Engineer Developing Electric Engines For Heavy Trucks.
Brown Refusing To Impose Hydraulic Fracking Ban.

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