Volume 15 - September 28, 2007 - Noteworthy Information

Introducing Wolfgang Haider - One Man's Recreation is Another Man's Research

bridges vol. 21, April 2009 / News from the Network: Austrian Researchers Abroad


By Juliet M. Beverly

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Haider_Wolfgang_small.jpgDr. Wolfgang Haider

Every week is Bike to Work Week for Wolfgang Haider, associate professor of resource and environmental management at the School of Resources and Environmental Management (REM) at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia, Canada. "I ride the bicycle to work almost on a daily basis - it's a workout and a commute all at the same time," says Haider, who estimates his commuting route is about 13 kilometers, or 8 miles, from his home to his office on campus. Haider's daily commute is what many people would only consider as a weekend activity. Not so for Haider. Even after arriving at his desk on campus, Haider's thoughts and actions continue to focus on biking and other outdoor and recreational activities such as hiking or fishing: He studies and models the decisions and behavior of people in recreational activities.

Haider, who received his M.Sc. in geography and history at the University of Vienna , is from the Austrian city of Eisenstadt. He attributes much of his affinity for geographical studies to growing up in the '60s in a small town in Austria and being sports and outdoors oriented. "Certain directions of thinking are ingrained in somebody - either you have it, or you don't have it. Being fascinated with geography was something I just had from when I was little," Haider says. After his studies in Vienna, he became a high school geography teacher.  But Haider wasn't interested in settling down in this career. "That wasn't in my psyche to settle down. I was looking for something else," Haider said. That "something else" happened to lead him to Carleton University in Ottawa, Ontario, where he received his M.A. in geography. Following his passion, he went on to receive his Ph.D. from McGill University in geography as well.  



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