Wendy Schiller comments on Providence's rising costs for pensions and healthcare, following Mayor Elorza's announcement of a proposed three-part savings plan for the city. Schiller says these costs are unsustainable.
Tim Edgar, visiting fellow in international studies, shares his take on the opposition to the USA Freedom Act, which many view as a workable compromise to the Patriot Act that preserves essential capabilities.
Journalist in Residence Stephen Kinzer in the Boston Globe, "If justice were truly blind, all would be treated equally and punished according to the scope of their offenses. Since justice is clearly being administered prejudicially, however, a larger solution is necessary."
Timothy Edgar, visiting fellow in international studies, comments on the possibility of key parts of the NSA’s surveillance powers granted by the Patriot Act expiring soon, unless Congress takes action.
Kenneth Wong, professor of education policy, commented on an article about Rushern L. Baker's proposal to increase property taxes to fund Prince George County's struggling school system. Wong said it's unusual to have a double-digit tax increase to fund schools, adding "It sends a strong signal that the new team will take school reform seriously."
May 15, 2015Center for International Maritime Security
Journalist in Residence Stephen Kinzer on the Center for International Maritime Security, "The forces that created the Dulles brothers are the forces that created America. If you can understand those sources you can understand a good deal about this country."
Visting Fellow Timothy Edgar on Lawfare, "The job of lawyers and privacy officials is the intelligence community is to administer the two basic systems of oversight first established by the Church Committee reforms of the 1970s: the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act and E.O. 12,333."
Timmons Roberts, professor of environmental studies and sociology, wrote an op-ed applauding Gov. Gina Raimondo and General Treasurer Seth Magaziner's proposed Infrastructure Bank, saying the "bank is simply a great plan, filled with common-sense approaches, and begins to allow us to scale up our existing state programs to build a more resilient economy and society."
Director of the China Initiative Edward Steinfeld on Brookings Blog, "When confronted by the kind of production practices emerging from China today, the smart move by observers in advanced industrial nations is to stop worrying, stop accusing, stop making excuses, and instead start learning."
Students who took part in an international relations class taught by Stephen Kinzer have their articles published in the Global Post. These articles are part of a series of stories written by students that will be posted on the site.
Ed Fitzpatrick talks to Brown postdoctoral fellow Atul Pokharel about the loss his family and town suffered during the earthquake in Nepal and a website he has created to help those affected by the disaster.
Nitsan Chorev, professor of sociology and international studies, comments on President Obama's proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership, which some fear will snuff out Fall River's hard-earned progress toward rebirth. “The winners are going to be companies that rely heavily on copyright and intellectual property protections . . . the other winners are going to be foreign companies,” Chorev says.
Stephen Kinzer writes about the history of denial on the part of many countries for genocide and other atrocities they have committed. He cites the Ottoman massacre of Armenians 100 years ago as one example.
Postdoctoral Fellow Atul Pokharel from Nepal, is using his international development expertise and personal knowledge of the country to help guide relief efforts after a major earthquake. He launched a web site that would answer three key questions for people looking for ways to help.
Sol Goldman Professor of International Studies and the Social Sciences and Director of the Brown-India Initiative Ashutosh Varshney in The Indian Express: "It is well known that most of what lifts the technological base of agriculture and connects it productively to urban opportunities requires public investment — in irrigation, research, seeds, power, transport, schools, skills, etc."
On April 22nd 2015, Congressman David Cicilline '83 and Richard Locke, the Director of the Watson Institute for International Studies at Brown discussed a range of foreign policy issues, including Congressman Cicilline's recent experience on a Congressional delegation to Cuba and his thoughts on the impact of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's address to Congress, ISIS, and the draft US-Iran deal. The pair also talked about how Congressman Cicilline's experiences at Brown and as a state legislator and mayor of Providence helped lead him to Capitol Hill.
"The Diplomat," an HBO documentary film about the life and legacy of U.S. Ambassador Richard Holbrooke, will have a free screening at Brown University's Watson Institute for International Studies, Tuesday at 5:30 p.m.
Rich Arenberg comments on Republicans attempts to try to pass multiple significant measures such as comprehensive tax reform and repealing Obamacare using a special budget procedure that allows Congress to pass legislation with only 51 votes in the Senate.
Ittleson Professor of Sociology and Environmental Studies Timmons J. Roberts in Newsweek: "Neighborhood cleanups for Earth Day are important, and I participate in them—they build community and give people a sense of efficacy in the face of terrifying and overwhelming environmental issues like climate change and the unrelenting rise of waste."
April 21, 2015Monkey Cage Blog, The Washington Post
Nicholas Miller, Frank Stanton assistant professor of nuclear security and policy and Or Rabinowitz on Monkey Cage Blog: "More often than not, instead of using military force against the nuclear upstart or making unrealistic demands that the country surrender all of its nuclear capabilities, the U.S. government has elected to broker pragmatic deals to restrict a country’s nuclear program and thereby limit the damage to the nonproliferation regime."
Theresa Devine, lecturer in public policy, comments on the local health care job market, noting that employment in that industry is likely to rise, but that much of this employment is likely to be outside hospitals and other inpatient facilities.
In an op-ed published Tuesday, April 14, 2015, in theProvidence Journal, Brown University President Christina Paxson shows how the Jewelry District can be the cornerstone of a bright future for Rhode Island — “a vibrant ecosystem of academics, commerce, and innovation.”
Timothy Edgar, visiting professor at the Watson Institute, explains that despite citizens' disapproval of the United States' surveillance programs, President Barack Obama has done much to protect civil liberties by way of transparency reforms.
Journalist in Residence Stephen Kinzer in The New York Times: "Some critics found his increasingly apocalyptic books published after the 1970s repetitive and self-righteous. Others said his relentless activism had overwhelmed his identity as a writer."
Richard Holbrooke Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Studies of Jeff Colgan on Monkey Cage: "Rare, individual security threats might call for a U.S. military response, but over the long run the situation calls for a different approach. "
The number of babies born with exposure to opioid drugs and alcohol nearly doubled in Rhode Island between 2006 and 2013.
That’s one of the more startling facts in the new Rhode Island Kids Count Factbook. Executive Director Elizabeth Burke Bryant said unlike earlier drug problems, this one is not concentrated in urban areas.
Associate Professor of Economics and International Affairs and Public Policy John Friedman's research cited in the Seattle Times, "Nationally, the bill would save small brewers about $65 million a year — money that we’ll pour right back into the nation’s economy."
Stephen Kinzer, visiting fellow at the Watson Institute for International Studies, writes an op-ed about the United States and its potential threats. "The United States has no potent enemies. We are not only safe, but safer than any big power has been in all of modern history," Kinzer wrote.
The Watson Institute for International Studies will host a screening of the HBO documentary film The Diplomat, about the life and legacy of former U.S. Ambassador Richard C. Holbrooke. The screening, to be followed by a conversation with Holbrooke’s son David, who directed the film, journalist David Rohde, and Richard Locke, director of the Watson Institute, begins at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 28, 2015, in the Salomon Center.
On Monday, April 6, the Watson Institute hosted "The Armenian Genocide: 100 Years of Denial." Presented by Dr. Henry Theriault, this talk explored the ongoing attempt at consolidation of the 1915 Armenian Genocide by the present-day Turkish government and the importance of reparative justice in thwarting this trend.
Jeff Colgan, Richard Holbrooke Assistant Professor of Political Science and International Studies in The Global Intelligence: “In the short run, it might intensify the conflict as various groups see a limited window of opportunity to affect the outcome of the conflict, before money and ammo run out.”
Timmons Roberts and Guy Edwards write about the upcoming Summit of the Americas in Panama this week, where the United Nations climate change negotiations happening in Paris in December will be on the agenda.
Jo-Anne Hart, adjunct professor of international studies, writes about the current nuclear weapons negotiations going on between several countries and Iran, and why those negotiations are the best option for the U.S.
Timmons Roberts comments on the White House's recently announced ambitious new target for cutting emissions of greenhouse gases. Mexico also recently announced a new target and Roberts says other countries could follow Mexico's lead.
Colleagues and friends will gather at the Watson Institute Friday, April 3, to congratulate Bhrigupati Singh, assistant professor of anthropology. Singh has been awarded the 2015 Joseph W. Elder Prize in the Indian Social Sciences for his manuscript Poverty and the Quest for Life: Spiritual and Material Striving in Contemporary Rural India.
Timmons Roberts comments on the United States' post-2020 United Nations’ climate agreement, which they submitted on Tuesday, along with several other countries. “The U.S. is seen by the world as the country most needing to take on commitments on climate change, and until about two years ago, the least willing to do so,” Roberts said.
Richard Arenberg comments on Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid, who is retiring this year and may be most remembered for deploying the so-called "nuclear option" on Nov. 21, 2013, to abolish the filibuster for most nominations. "I do fear that the use of the nuclear option by Harry Reid and the Democrats has put the Senate on the slippery slope to the eventual elimination of the filibuster," Arenberg said.
Timmons Roberts, Ittleson Professor of Sociology and Environmental Studies, and Guy Edwards on Brookings Blog: "The inclusion of conditional and unconditional contributions is useful, both in making it possible to know what Mexico can be counted upon to do, and to know what global changes will be needed for them to do more."
Sol Goldman Professor of International Studies and the Social Sciences and Director of the Brown-India Initiative Ashutosh Varshney in The Indian Express: "If the contentions are deeper than outsiders know and there are hidden transcripts of incompatibility and injury, the AAP is heading for a 1969-style Congress split."
Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy Alan Harlam on Footnote: "By integrating activities in and out of the classroom into a comprehensive learning experience, engaged scholarship enhances learning and better prepares students to pursue their passions and career goals after graduation."
Director of the Development Studies Concentration Program Nitsan Chorev, the spring 2015 recipient of the Presidential Faculty Award, will deliver a lecture about her work on pharmaceutical production in East Africa. Her address begins at 4:30 p.m. Thursday, April 2, 2015, in the Reading Room of the John Hay Library.
Journalist in Residence Stephen Kinzer in the Boston Globe: "The most striking proof of the decline of the nation-state is the dramatically growing power of mercenary armies. Some countries — notably, the United States — now contract out much war-fighting to private corporations."
Adjunct Lecturer in Public Policy and Political Science Richard Arenberg writes about recent opposition in Congress to the filibuster and the need to maintain filibuster rules in order to protect the rights of the minority.