The OECD announced today that three separate studies support that conclusion that “putting the right price on water will encourage people to waste less, pollute less, and invest more in water infrastructure.”  In the view of the OECD, the “right price” is one that reflects the true cost of the water they consume  – both drinking water, water for agricultural uses,  and any other water uses that ultimately require treatment and/or disposal.

You can find the free OECD summary of its studies here:,3343,en_2649_37465_36146415_1_1_1_1,00.html

The studies themselves are “for fee” publications to the general public.  These are, however, freely  available to current UBC students, faculty and staff members and patrons working at UBC Library workstations via the subscription database SourceOECD.  You will find our link to SourceOECD here. Note, the OECD does provide free access to a wide range of its smaller reports, including water pricing details “for Australia, the European Union, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Turkey and the United States.”

The studies are:

1) Pricing Water Resources and Water and Sanitation Services

2) Sustainable Management of Water Resources in Agriculture

3) Innovative Financing Mechanisms for the Water Sector

Scottish schools offering lessons in sleeping

A charity organization is offering sleeping lessons in schools in Scotland — saying bad behaviour among the country’s teenagers could be due to sleep deprivation. Sleep Scotland says teaching students how to sleep can help improve academic achievement. The classes teach students that they should be sleeping for more than nine hours each night and that a nighttime routine is important.

BBC (15 Mar.)


Foreign universities would be able to open campuses in India under a policy being considered by lawmakers. Supporters say the bill will open badly needed spaces for students interested in higher education. Roughly half of the 1.2 billion people who live in India are 25 or younger. The New York Times


Canadian officials are working to recruit more Chinese students to the country’s high schools, colleges and universities. As of 2008, there were about 42,000 Chinese students studying in Canada, and officials believe those numbers grew about 20% last year. However, some say that the US and Australia are ahead of Canada in terms of education and student visa policies, and they lead in the recruitment of Chinese students.

The Globe and Mail (Toronto) (16 Mar.)


A draft of common national standards for English and math was released today by the National Governors Association and Council of Chief State School Officers. The proposal includes specific benchmarks that students should achieve at each grade level. For example, by the end of eighth grade, students should be able to “informally explain why the square root of 2 is irrational.” The effort — endorsed by 48 states — is being praised for its attempt to bring an “ambitious and coherent” curriculum nationwide, while others are critical of a “one-size-fits-all” approach.


UBC Library has set up an institutional membership to Hindawi Publishing that entitles UBC authors to bypass all open access (OA) publication charges if their submissions are accepted for publication. This is the only one of the Library’s OA memberships that features this level of discount (open access refers to free, unfettered access to scholarly research [...]

Thanks to Koerner’s Government Publications Division for their recent update on Google Public Data Explorer, an experimental visualization tool which enables users to bring international economic and statistical data to life.

Faculty and students can work with this new tool to mash up publicly available statistical data using line graphs, bar graphs, maps and bubble charts. They can link to these visualizations, or embed them in their own webpages. Embedded charts and links are dynamic, updating automatically so you’re always viewing the latest available data. Data sources include Eurostat, the World Bank, the OECD, the US Bureau of the Census, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the US Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Read more about this tool at the Google Blog

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