A Notre Dame undergraduate and a master’s degree student have been awarded the Dante Society of America’s two top student essay awards. Dale Lobo ’16, a science pre-professional major and theology minor, won the Dante Prize for best undergraduate essay related to the life or works of the renowned Italian poet. Thomas Graff, who received his master’s in Italian studies at Notre Dame this spring, won the Charles Hall Grandgent Award for best essay on Dante by a graduate student.
Latest News » Research
Even during fall break, College of Arts and Letters students were hard at work. They toured Latin America to perform sacred music. They gathered to collaborate on senior thesis projects and dissertations. And they traveled to major cities across the U.S. to explore career options and network with Notre Dame alumni.
“When you look at which men and women U.S. Catholics have wanted to become saints, you actually learn a lot about how they understood themselves, not only as Catholics but also as members of American society. ”
— Kathleen Sprows Cummings
A new study from Nathan Rose, assistant professor of psychology, examined a fundamental problem your brain has to solve, which is keeping information “in mind,” or active, so your brain can act accordingly.
On a sunny spring afternoon, Amy Mulligan leads a class of Notre Dame undergraduates to the shore of Saint Mary’s Lake. Sitting on the grass, the students take turns reading aloud passages from a 12th-century Irish text. “We make these campus pilgrimages to consider how a text is transformed when you move into a natural environment,” said Mulligan, an assistant professor of Irish language and literature who recently won both a National Endowment for the Humanities fellowship and a Fulbright U.S. Scholar award.
Joseph Kaboski’s work in Armenia started with an email from the developing country, one of those you might usually delete. But the Notre Dame economist responded—and he’s now become a trusted adviser to the Central Bank of Armenia, helping with research to guide the Eurasian nation’s economic policy.
Meghan Sullivan, the Rev. John A. O'Brien Collegiate Associate Professor of Philosophy, discusses her current research on the philosophy of time—especially time biases, or how our assumptions about time factor into our preferences about how our lives go.
Notre Dame senior Sienna Wdowik knows exactly the type of job she wants after graduation. Her two majors in the College of Arts and Letters and multiple international experiences, internships, and research projects will help her land it. “It’s really important to me to find a position where I can serve my country and use the knowledge that I have to do counterterrorism work,” she said. For Wdowik, majoring in political science and Arabic was the perfect way to prepare for that.
Watkins, a native of Blacksburg, Virginia, and Doyle, of Los Altos, California, are two of 32 Rhodes Scholars selected from a pool of 882 candidates who had been endorsed by their colleges and universities. They are Notre Dame’s 18th and 19th Rhodes Scholars and will commence their studies at Oxford University in October.
Notre Dame researchers suggest that the origin of both colic and SIDS may be related to the gradual emergence of an infant’s ability to voluntarily control the release of air through the vocal track.
The Global Religion Research Initiative at Notre Dame, directed by Christian Smith, director of the Center for the Study of Religion and Society and the William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Sociology, is a newly launched initiative in the center that aims to advance the empirical study of global religion in mainstream academia. Smith was awarded $4.9 million from the Templeton Religion Trust and will fund more than 150 research proposals by distributing $3.1 million to scholars of global religion through three rounds of applications over the next three years.
The public has lots of questions about refugees, and William Evans and Danny Fitzgerald have come up with some answers. Evans, chair and Keough-Hesburgh Professor in Notre Dame’s Department of Economics, and Fitzgerald, a senior economics and mathematics major, have been analyzing a quarter-century of data to determine the economic impact of refugees who enter the United States. They will present their findings to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) in Washington, D.C., on Tuesday (Nov. 15).
Policy research by Reyes Ruiz González, a graduate student in economics and Ph.D. fellow at the Kellogg Institute for International Studies, was recently published by Stanford University’s Hoover Institution, a leading public policy think tank that promotes economic opportunity, prosperity, and peace. The case study, coauthored by Arturo Ramírez Verdugo, analyzes successful subnational approaches to reducing violence related to drug trafficking and organized crime that spiked in two of Mexico’s northernmost states in 2009–11.
King Fok, a a junior majoring in sociology and Arts and Letters pre-health with a minor in international development studies, has been awarded the 2016 Lord Acton Memorial Scholarship for his semester of study at Notre Dame’s London Global Gateway. Launched by the Association of American Study Abroad Programmes (AASAP/UK), the Lord Acton Memorial Scholarship rewards a “deserving student” who “demonstrates an understanding and appreciation of the value of an international educational experience.”
While universality—and unity amid diversity—is a fundamental characteristic of Roman Catholicism, all-too-familiar issues related to gender, sexuality, race, and authority have wrought the church with internal conflict and no clear path to finding middle ground. A new book, co-edited by Mary Ellen Konieczny, intends to start the conversation about the polarization in the Catholic Church through healthy debates and genuine engagement.
A new book by Notre Dame Sociologist Terence McDonnell examines why expensive media campaigns that try to harness the power of culture to change beliefs or behavior often fail. Using AIDS campaigns in Ghana as his central case study, he lays out an argument that carries important implications for diverse types of media campaigns around the world.
The Department of Economics at the University of Notre Dame conducts impactful research using the best available theoretical and empirical methods in the discipline, all while fostering the Catholic mission of the University. With specialties in macroeconomics, applied micro economics, development economics, and game theory, Notre Dame economics faculty and graduate students work together to find answers to a wide array of difficult economic, social, and policy-relevant questions. In this new video, Notre Dame economists talk about some of the department’s pioneering research projects and its approach to graduate education and faculty development.
Karen Graubart loves a good puzzle. In a Peruvian archive this summer, the Notre Dame associate professor of history and Romance languages and literatures found a piece of a puzzle that reshaped how many scholars view colonial Latin American rule. Her research discovery supports arguments she recently made in her article in Hispanic American Historical Review, which won the Conference on Latin American History’s 2015 James Alexander Robertson Memorial Prize.
James Sullivan, co-founder of the Wilson Sheehan Lab for Economic Development and Rev. Thomas J. McDonagh, C.S.C., Associate Professor of Economics at the University of Notre Dame, will testify Nov. 4 in Washington, D.C.
Senior Ann Gallagher won the 2016 Monteverdi Prize through Notre Dame’s Program of Liberal Studies (PLS), allowing her to spend the summer as a scholar-in-residence at Monteverdi Tuscany, an Italian hotel and center for the liberal arts founded by PLS alumnus Michael Cioffi ’75. The Monteverdi Prize, a scholarship created by the Cioffi family for PLS majors, also includes research funding for the summer and $10,000 toward the recipient’s university student account.
The Qur’an describes God as a god of mercy. The Qur’an describes God as a god of vengeance. Are those qualities mutually exclusive? Gabriel Said Reynolds doesn’t think so. The Notre Dame professor of Islamic studies and theology is using a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities to explore the idea. He’s spending a year researching the way the Muslim holy text juxtaposes narratives of God’s destruction with declarations of God’s compassion.
When honors medieval studies major Karen Neis ’16 took a class on Charlemagne, the unusual story of the emperor’s prized elephant resonated with her. She recalled that story when it came time to choose a senior thesis, ultimately leading her to produce an illustrated children’s book, Abul Abbas, The Elephant. The book recounts the journey of the elephant a caliph gave as a gift to Charlemagne around the year 800. In the story, a Christian, a Jew, and a Muslim all work together to transport the elephant 3,000 miles from Baghdad to Aachen.
David Campbell is the Packey J. Dee Professor of American Democracy and chair of the Department of Political Science at the University of Notre Dame. His research interests include American politics, civic engagement, political behavior, religion and politics, and education policy. In this video, he discusses his research on why people do—or, increasingly do not—get involved in politics.
Marisel Moreno, an associate professor in Notre Dame’s Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, has been selected to receive the 2016 Sheedy Excellence in Teaching Award, the highest teaching honor in the College of Arts and Letters. Moreno, whose research and teaching focus on Latino literature and culture, helped launch a community-based learning program in her department in 2010. Students in her classes enhance traditional literature study by volunteering at La Casa de Amistad, a local Latino community organization.
French literature has received a lot of attention lately from an unexpected source—economists. Julia Douthwaite, a professor of French in Notre Dame’s Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, wants to evaluate their interpretations and delve deeper into literary representations of money. Douthwaite has received a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Humanities—her second—for her book project on the topic, tentatively titled Financiers We Have Known: A Capitalist History of Literature.
César Soto wants to know how the spark of political revolution can transform religious concepts of community and inclusion. To better understand the issue, he’s turning to the literature of England, Ireland, and Mexico in the late 1700s and early 1800s. Soto, a Ph.D. candidate in Notre Dame’s Department of English with a graduate minor in Irish studies, has been awarded a Ford Foundation Dissertation Fellowship for 2016-17 to support his project.
Graduate students Filippo Gianferrari and Adriana Monica Solomon have been awarded Mellon/ACLS Dissertation Completion Fellowships to delve deeper into the lives and impact of two intellectual archetypes—Dante and Isaac Newton, respectively. Gianferrari, a Ph.D. candidate in the Medieval Institute, is investigating the Latin authors who may have influenced Dante. And Solomon, a philosophy Ph.D. candidate in the History and Philosophy of Science Program at the John J. Reilly Center for Science, Technology, and Values, is shining a light on Newton’s lesser-known contributions to philosophy and science.
Sociologist Kraig Beyerlein and his team used hypernetwork sampling to create a catalog of protest events that occurred throughout the United States between the summer of 2010 and the summer of 2011.
An interdisciplinary research collaboration between the University of Notre Dame and Cornell University has awarded more than $344,000 to seven projects in the final year of the program that explores the theoretical, empirical, and practical dimensions of hope and optimism, as well as related states such as pessimism, anxiety, and despair. The project, Hope and Optimism: Conceptual and Empirical Investigations, also announced the winners of its Hope on Stage and Hope on Screen contests, which challenged artists to create both original plays and original films that explored the concept of hope.
The University of Notre Dame’s College of Arts and Letters has launched two rigorous new doctoral programs in Italian and Spanish designed to train world-class literary scholars in the languages and literatures of Italy, the Iberian Peninsula, and Latin America. As the first new graduate degrees formed since the creation of the College’s innovative 5+1 Postdoctoral Fellowship Program, the curriculum and structure has been designed to incentivize and facilitate timely degree completion.