With the critical November elections now upon us, the work of political theorist James Fetter couldn’t be more timely. Fetter, who earned his Ph.D. from Notre Dame in Political Science in 2012, studies and writes about the virtues of political leadership.
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Kasey Buckles, an assistant professor in Notre Dame’s Department of Economics, challenges undergraduates to take the theories, statistics, and modeling tools they learn in their core courses and apply them to universal life experiences like birth, marriage, divorce, and other family dynamics. In her research-focused seminar called Economics of the Family, Buckles and her students explore questions such as “What is the effect of birth order on prenatal investment in children?” and “How does a mother’s age at first birth affect the academic achievement of her children?”
Exploring an essential human virtue. Whether it’s the gift of time, money, or a helping hand, everyone has the capacity to transform someone else’s life. But, in a world where millions struggle to put food on the table, millions more struggle either to keep their jobs or to find jobs that pay a living wage, and millions still struggle with either preventable or treatable diseases, why do some people give so much and others so little? The University of Notre Dame’s Science of Generosity initiative is leading an international effort to uncover the causes, manifestations, and consequences of generosity.
When Catherine Bolten first considered studying the city of Makeni in Sierra Leone, many people—government officials, professors, the U.S. ambassador—warned her to stay away. It’s a dangerous and immoral place, they told her, infamous because residents refused to fight the rebels who occupied Makeni for three years (1998-2002) during the decade-long civil war.
Notre Dame Political Science Professor David Campbell recently received a grant of more than $300,000 from the Spencer Foundation for a three-year project called “Family Matters: How Home and Family Life Affect Youth Civic Engagement.”
The Varieties of Democracy project (V-Dem), an ambitious international research collaboration based at Notre Dame’s Kellogg Institute for International Studies, has been awarded €475,000 (about $616,500) in research support from the European Commission. Led by Notre Dame political scientist Michael Coppedge, Staffan Lindberg of the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, and John Gerring of Boston University, the multiyear project aims to produce better indicators of democracy, helping to illuminate why democracies around the world succeed or fail.
A partnership between the University of Cambridge and Notre Dame’s Italian program in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures is giving graduate students at both institutions the opportunity to work directly with leading scholars in their areas of interest.
Two professors of French and Francophone studies in Notre Dame’s Department of Romance Languages and Literatures are bringing recognition to little-known literature of the past and present. Through individual and joint research projects, Professor Julia Douthwaite, a specialist in 18th and 19th century French literature, and Associate Professor Alison Rice, an expert in French-language texts from the 20th and 21st centuries, are working toward this common goal.
University of Notre Dame historian Brad Gregory has been awarded the inaugural Aldersgate Prize for Christian Scholarship for his latest book, The Unintended Reformation: How a Religious Revolution Secularized Society. Presented by Indiana Wesleyan University’s John Wesley Honors College (JWHC), the prize recognizes a published book’s ability to reflect the highest ideals of Christian scholarship.
Christopher Porter, who recently completed the joint Ph.D. in logic and foundations of mathematics at the University of Notre Dame, has been awarded a prestigious National Science Foundation International Research Fellowship.
When Christine Becker signed up for Twitter in September 2009, the associate professor in Notre Dame’s Department of Film, Television, and Theatre wasn’t sure what to expect. What she found was a new way to connect with people in both academia and the television industry, a new source of research and teaching materials, and a vehicle for staying on the leading edge of her scholarly field.
In recognition of her distinguished body of scholarship, University of Notre Dame’s Nicole McNeil has received the 2013 Boyd McCandless Award from the American Psychological Association (APA). McNeil, Alliance for Catholic Education Associate Professor of Psychology, focuses her research on the development of mathematical thinking in various forms. Over the past several years, she has received more than $2 million in funding from the Institute of Education Sciences and the National Science Foundation.
Nell Jessup Newton, dean of the Notre Dame Law School, has announced the development of a new interdisciplinary program, The Notre Dame Research Program on Law and Market Behavior (ND LAMB). The research agenda examines issues across a number of legal fields—from corporate governance, antitrust and intellectual property, through property and contract, to market regulation more generally—and draws extensively on relevant extralegal research in psychology, economics, business, and beyond.
The John J. Reilly Center for Science, Technology, and Values focuses on three broad areas in support of its mission: education, research and outreach, says Don A. Howard, center director and professor of philosophy. “We want to be a partner with technical faculty, to help them talk about social, ethical, legal and policy implications of science and technology. We also want to take our voice off-campus, and be more than a campus leader—we want to be a national and international leader.”
Together+, a campaign to combat xenophobia in South Africa by providing educational resources to empower people to embrace diversity, has been awarded a $50,000 Sappi Ideas that Matter grant. After a year of research, development, refinement, and two trips to Johannesburg, the grant will enable the together+ team to produce and distribute the first round of materials designed by students from the University of Notre Dame’s graphic design program in the Department of Art, Art History, and Design.
Two scholars from the University of Notre Dame’s Institute for Advanced Study recently were awarded a $1.58 million grant from the John Templeton Foundation for a three-year program to promote dialogue across academic disciplines. Vittorio Hösle, Paul Kimball Chair of Arts and Letters and director of NDIAS, and Donald Stelluto, associate director of NDIAS, won the award for their proposal, “Pursuing the Unity of Knowledge: Integrating Religion, Science, and the Academic Disciplines.” The program will foster inquiry into the “great questions” in an environment that considers secular and spiritual knowledge as mutually beneficial ways of learning, rather than rivals in a winner-take-all competition.
Despite official government statistics showing a rise in the number of poor in this country, poverty actually has fallen by 12.5 percentage points in the past 40 years, according to a new study by University of Notre Dame economist James X. Sullivan, whose research examines the consumption, saving and borrowing behavior of poor households in the U.S., and how welfare and tax policy affect the well-being of the poor. The paper was presented September 13 at the Brookings Institution’s fall 2012 conference on the Brookings Papers on Economic Activity.
When Kathleen Bracke got the call, she dropped the phone out of shock, then picked it up and asked the caller to repeat the news. On the other end was a representative of the Princess Grace Foundation-USA announcing that Bracke had won a 2012 Princess Grace Award. Bracke, a senior in the University of Notre Dame’s Department of Film, Television, and Theatre (FTT) is one of only two winners of this year’s Princess Grace Undergraduate Film Scholarship.
The University of Notre Dame’s Interdisciplinary Center for Network Science and Applications (iCeNSA), is a connector and a hub whose interdisciplinary work and faculty affiliates span computing, science, engineering, mathematics, social science, and humanities. Nitesh Chawla of computer science and engineering is director of the center, with co-directors Michael Ferdig of biological sciences, David Hachen of sociology and Zoltán Toroczkai of physics. The multidisciplinary approach, reaching into education and service as well as research and science, puts iCeNSA on the leading edge of an accelerating trend in universities and other enterprises.
University of Notre Dame political scientist Jaimie Bleck has won the 2011 Lynne Rienner Award for Best Dissertation in African Politics from the American Political Science Association’s Africa Politics Conference Group (APCG). Bleck’s award-winning work, “Schooling Citizens: Education, Citizenship, and Democracy in Mali,” explores the political effect of education in the West African country.
The Eucharistic Liturgies: Their Evolution and Interpretation, by University of Notre Dame theology professors Paul F. Bradshaw and Maxwell E. Johnson, has recently been published by Liturgical Press of Collegeville, Minn. The book concerns the historical development of the theology and liturgy of the Church’s most important prayer, from the early Christian communal meals to the diverse Eucharistic liturgies of Eastern and Western Christians.
The structure of a federal program that provides monthly subsidies to promote the adoptions of special needs children in foster care may actually be delaying some adoptions, according to a new study by University of Notre Dame economist Kasey Buckles.
Mothers aren’t the only ones who are biologically adapted to respond to children. New research from the University of Notre Dame shows that dads who sleep near their children experience a drop in testosterone. Previous research from humans and other species suggests this decrease might make men more responsive to their children’s needs and help them focus on the demands of parenthood. In a recent study, Notre Dame Anthropologist Lee Gettler shows that close sleep proximity between fathers and their children (on the same sleeping surface) results in lower testosterone compared to fathers who sleep alone.
For her contributions to Emerson studies, Laura Dassow Walls, the University of Notre Dame’s William P. and Hazel B. White Professor of English, has been awarded the 2012 Ralph Waldo Emerson Society Distinguished Achievement Award.
A new book by political scientist and peace studies scholar Daniel Philpott makes the case for forgiveness and reconciliation as a way to achieve justice and lasting peace after violent conflict. Just and Unjust Peace: An Ethic of Political Reconciliation, recently released by Oxford University Press, explores the concept of reconciliation, which is deeply rooted in Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, as well as in the secular restorative justice movement.
Most Americans are comfortable fixing a date (July 4) and an event (the signing of the Declaration of Independence) to a definitive moment when the United States separated itself from its colonial parent, Great Britain. But for University of Notre Dame historian Patrick Griffin, the revolution is better understood as a process—not an event.
Geoffrey Layman, professor in Notre Dame’s Department of Political Science, has won the 2012 Jack Walker Outstanding Article Award for “Activists and Conflict Extension in American Party Politics,” published by the American Political Science Review in 2010. Bestowed by the Political Organizations and Parties section of the American Political Science Association (APSA), the award recognizes an article published within the past two years that has made a significant contribution to research and scholarship on political organizations and parties.
With her graduate thesis project, University of Notre Dame alumna Charlotte Lux, M.F.A. ’11, set out to redesign a stressful diagnostic procedure women who might have breast cancer undergo in the hopes of making it less traumatic. The resulting design has earned Lux recognition in the 2012 Core77 Design Awards, where she was named student winner in the strategy and research category.
The U.S. Census Bureau’s method of calculating who is poor and who is not has been under fire by researchers for years because it doesn’t calculate the benefits of anti-poverty programs—such as food stamps and housing subsidies—into its formula. In response to the criticism, the Census Bureau released in the fall of 2011 the Supplemental Poverty Measure to more accurately assess poverty in America. Though the new supplemental measure uses a definition of income that is conceptually closer to resources available for consumption than pretax money income, a new study by University of Notre Dame economist James X. Sullivan finds that even the Supplementary Poverty Measure provides an inaccurate reflection of deprivation in this country.