March 18, 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 at large.

>> News and Research

>Forty Years of Social Policy Research at IPR
For 40 years, the Institute for Policy Research has brought together scholars to study the real-world sources and consequences of inequality. The Institute's 40th anniversary conference features prominent researchers from across the nation to address inequality in relation to income, race, education, gender, health, and politics.

> New Book: What Americans Think About Inequality
IPR political scientist Benjamin Page and Lawrence Jacobs of the University of Minnesota have a forthcoming book, "Class War? What Americans Really Think About Economic Inequality." It presents compelling evidence that most Americans favor free enterprise and practical government programs to distribute wealth more equitably. Their research was cited in a recent Newsweek column.

>Early Career Award for IPR Social Psychologist
The American Psychological Association has honored IPR social psychologist Jennifer Richeson with one of five early career awards for 2009. The award, established in 1974, honors young psychologists for their demonstrated academic excellence.

> IPR Fellow Part of Gates Foundation College Initiative
IPR developmental psychologist P. Lindsay Chase-Lansdale is one of the researchers working on an important, recently launched $69-million college completion initiative led by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

>Helping Infected Black Women Live with HIV/AIDS
In Chicago, black women make up 37 percent of the female population yet account for 80 percent of reported HIV cases. IPR sociologist Celeste Watkins-Hayes is currently studying how these women cope in the face of their diagnosis and how framing institutions can help them manage their health and well-being.

>Training for Cluster-Randomized Trials in Education - Now Online
Videos and presentations from the 2008 IES/NCER Research Training Institute are now available online, free of charge. The institute was designed to help education researchers develop and conduct rigorous evaluations of the effectiveness of education interventions. The institute, co-organized by IPR researcher and statistician Larry Hedges, was sponsored by the National Center on Education Research at the Institute of Education Sciences.

>Turning Student Teachers into Successful Teachers
Michelle Reininger, assistant professor of education, social policy, and learning sciences and IPR faculty fellow, was interviewed about her ongoing study of Chicago Public School's student teaching program and pre-service (or student) teachers in a story for Catalyst's Web site. The study is funded by the Joyce Foundation.

>Mission and Money: Understanding Universities' Goals
IPR economist Burton Weisbrod gave a talk that appeared on CSpan2's BookTV about his recently released book "Mission and Money: Understanding the University." In it, he highlights the complexity and conflict inherent in the seemingly simple twin goals of a college or university: raising revenue and spending it in pursuit of its mission. The book was co-written with Evelyn Asch and Jeff Ballou.

>Poverty Summit Brings Together Policymakers and Researchers
Marian Wright Edelman, founder of the Children's Defense Fund, was the keynote speaker at "Opportunities for Change: Taking Action to End Extreme Poverty in Illinois," held December 9-10 at Northwestern University. Several IPR faculty participated in the summit co-sponsored by the Institute.

>> Upcoming Events

>"Dynamics of Inequality in America from 1968 to Today," April 16-17, 2009
IPR's 40th Anniversary Conference and Distinguished Public Policy Lecture. Registration required.

>IPR Spring Colloquia and Events, April 2 - June 10, 2009
Topics include linking childhood conditions and adult outcomes, social networks and refugees, and the competitive effects of school vouchers. The interdisciplinary series is free and open to the public.

>Political and Social Behavior Workshop, May 8
Organized by IPR political scientist James Druckman, the third annual Chicago Area Political and Social Behavior Workshop (CAB) will bring together social scientists and graduate students from around the Midwest. IPR is a co-sponsor. Registration required.

> Summer Biomarker Institute, June 8-10
IPR's Cells to Society (C2S) will host its fourth annual Summer Biomarker Institute from June 8 to 10. The institute, led by IPR faculty Thomas McDade, Emma Adam, and Christopher Kuzawa, provides a hands-on introduction to integrating biomarkers into population-based, social science research. The deadline for applications is April 1. Registration is $400.

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