June 24, 2009
The Institute for Policy Research (IPR) is an interdisciplinary public policy research institute founded in 1968-69 at Northwestern University. Our mission is to stimulate and support excellent social science research on significant public policy issues and to disseminate the findings widely -- to students, scholars, policymakers, and the public. www.northwestern.edu/ipr
>> News and Research
> "Dynamics of Inequality in America from 1968 to Today"
To celebrate its 40th anniversary, the Institute brought together some of the nation's leading researchers on April 16-17 for an interdisciplinary conference to examine the dynamics of inequality in the United States over the past four decades.
Conference Agenda: http://www.ipr.northwestern.edu/iprat40/iprat40-agenda.html
Article on IPR's history: http://www.northwestern.edu/newscenter/stories/2009/02/ipr40.html
> Experimental Political Science
More than 100 political scientists and graduate students from around the nation discussed the difficulties and rewards of conducting experiments in political science at a two-day conference held at Northwestern. The conference papers will be included in a forthcoming volume from Cambridge University Press, co-edited by IPR political scientist James Druckman, who organized the conference.
> Revamp of TESS: Time-sharing Experiments for the Social Sciences
IPR sociologist Jeremy Freese is spearheading a revamp of the TESS Web site with Penny Visser of the University of Chicago. TESS is an NSF-infrastructure project that offers researchers opportunities to test their experimental ideas on large, diverse, randomly selected subject populations.
> Treating Ambiguity with Diversification
Typically, research only provides part of the knowledge needed to make an informed policy decision. IPR economist Charles F. Manski shows how policymakers can make more informed policy choices in real-world settings using adaptive diversification.
> New Book: "The Handbook of Research Synthesis and Meta-Analysis," 2nd ed.
Updating the first edition, which became the most-cited reference book in the field, IPR statistician and education researcher Larry Hedges, who co-edited the volume, and the handbook's contributors provide a portfolio of the most effective solutions to many problems of quantitative data integration.
> New Book: "Talking Together: Public Deliberation and Political Participation in America"
Painting the most comprehensive portrait available of public deliberation in the United States, Talking Together assesses the role of deliberation in American governance and offers recommendations for increasing the power of talk to foster political action. IPR social policy professor Fay Lomax Cook and her co-authors present original and extensive research that explains how and why citizens talk to each other, who is doing the talking, and the difference it makes.
> New Book: "Sex, Power & Taboo: Gender and HIV in the Caribbean and Beyond"
This book, co-edited by IPR law professor Dorothy Roberts, draws upon multidisciplinary research to offer a provocative look at why poor black women are overrepresented in the global HIV/AIDS epidemic. It includes a chapter on the economic and social conditions of African American women living with the disease by IPR sociologist Celeste Watkins-Hayes.
> Does Changing Neighborhoods Change Lives?
In an IPR working paper that was recently published, IPR social policy professor James Rosenbaum and Stephanie DeLuca of Johns Hopkins analyze data from the Gautreaux and Moving to Opportunity programs to discuss whether housing policies can improve the success of education and employment reforms.
Read the SESP article here: http://www.sesp.northwestern.edu/newsCenter/?NewsID=608
> Faculty Awards
IPR economist Charles F. Manski was nominated to the National Academy of Arts and Sciences. IPR psychologist Alice Eagly received a Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award from the American Psychological Association. IPR political scientist James Druckman received the Midwest Political Science Association's Pi Sigma Alpha paper award.
> Two IPR Faculty Receive Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Support
The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation recently awarded grants to two IPR researchers. Social demographer Alberto Palloni will examine the impact of early health conditions on adult socioeconomic and health outcomes. Sociologist Celeste Watkins-Hayes will conduct a sociological analysis of how black women with HIV/AIDS manage their health.
> Gaming the U.S. News Rankings
A Clemson researcher presented a report detailing the university's efforts to raise its position in U.S. News' ranking of top 20 public research universities. In an editorial, IPR economist Burton Weisbrod and researcher Evelyn Asch discuss how colleges and universities are no different from any other organizations competing for rankings developed from performance measures.
> A Tale of Two Studies: Facebook Use and Grades
IPR communication studies researcher Eszter Hargittai examined the purported negative relationship between use of the online networking site Facebook and students’ academic achievement, refuting the findings of an earlier report that received widespread media coverage.
> IPR Faculty in the Media
Recent media appearances and clips include: IPR political scientist Victoria DeFrancesco Soto is interviewed about Hispanic issues on the Today Show and Chicago Public Radio. IPR sociologist and African American studies researcher Celeste Watkins-Hayes talks about her forthcoming book, "The New Welfare Bureaucrats," on Seattle Public Radio. First Lady Michelle Obama mentions her work with the ABCD Institute and two IPR faculty in a recent speech.
>> Upcoming Events
> IPR Fall Colloquia, Oct. 12 - Nov. 30, 2009
Planning for the fall schedule is underway and will include presentations from psychologist Jennifer Richeson, and sociologists John Hagan and Leslie McCall, among others. The interdisciplinary series is free and open to the public.
>> For more news and information, please visit www.northwestern.edu/ipr.
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