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I offered Muhammad Ali a vasectomy

Malcolm Potts, professor of population and family planning | June 4, 2016

I was sorry to learn of Muhammad Ali’s death. In my brief encounter with him I remember a self-confident individual, who could also be thoughtful and sensitive. I was still living in England in the early 1970s, but I was in Florida at a family planning conference. Among the people I had taught to do … Continue reading »

On development and displacement

Miriam Zuk, director, Urban Displacement Project | May 24, 2016

After the California Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO) used our data from the Urban Displacement Project to advocate for the construction of market-rate housing as an anti-displacement tool back in February, questions have poured into our office: Is it true that market rate development reduces displacement? Does subsidized housing really have no effect? What is filtering? … Continue reading »

How the U.S. can strengthen economic and military ties with India

Riddhi Dasgupta, International law expert | May 21, 2016

By John Yoo and Riddhi Dasgupta: By forging an alliance with Thailand, Taiwan and other Asian nations, the U.S. and India can accelerate economic growth in the region. President Barack Obama has finally resumed progress toward one of the most important strategic goals in American foreign policy: strengthening America’s alliance with India. President Obama’s visit … Continue reading »

Telling the truth about UC

Robert Birgeneau, professor of physics, former chancellor | April 8, 2016

When institutions are under stress, they often find themselves under attack by those responsible for the stress in the first place. This vicious circle is dramatically illustrated by the recent state auditor’s report that heavily criticizes the University of California for many supposed faults, especially admissions policies and administrative inefficiencies. I was taken aback by … Continue reading »

America’s school buildings — like California’s — need fixing

Jeffrey Vincent, deputy director, Center for Cities and Schools | April 4, 2016

Our country’s K-12 infrastructure is in crisis. Far too often, these learning environments are rundown and in disrepair, discourage and sicken children and teachers, waste energy, and fail to support a 21st century education. A new national study by the 21st Century School Fund, the National Council on School Facilities, and the Center for Green Schools sheds much-needed light … Continue reading »

Opening Day 2016

Claude Fischer, professor of sociology | March 31, 2016

Opening Day 2016 is coming up this Sunday. And thus an opportunity for me to pursue an issue I addressed in 2014’s Opening Day post, on how baseball remains America’s true pastime. Real sports excitement and engagement rests in large part on the uncertainty of the outcome. This is why the drama of sports exceeds that of the scripted … Continue reading »

Adoption history and Women’s History Month

Catherine Ceniza Choy, professor of ethnic studies | March 26, 2016

While Women’s History Month encourages us to recognize the individual achievements of pioneering women in various fields, that recognition should not be an end in itself. It would, and should, take far more than a month to find, reclaim, and remember women’s histories that have not yet been canonized. When their names and faces and … Continue reading »

How California’s housing shortage chases away the middle class

Ethan Elkind, associate director, Climate Change and Business Program | March 17, 2016

Next 10, a nonpartisan research entity (with whom I’ve worked on studies in the past), released a trio of reports that shows how California’s housing shortage and resulting high prices have chased middle class and low-wage residents out of the state:   California experienced a negative net domestic migration of 625,000 from 2007 to 2014. … Continue reading »

A dean’s reflection on campus sexual misconduct cases

Jeffrey Edleson, dean and professor, social welfare | March 13, 2016

Co-Chair, UCB Coordinated Community Review Team on Sexual Misconduct At this year’s Academy Awards Vice President Biden asked all of us to no longer be silent bystanders to sexual assault on campus. So here we find ourselves at Berkeley watching from the sidelines, in a silence that speaks volumes to those around us. Fleming, Marcy, … Continue reading »

Berkeley’s handling of sexual harassment is a disgrace

Michael Eisen, Professor of molecular and cell biology | March 10, 2016

What more is there to say? Another case where a senior member of the Berkeley faculty, this time Berkeley Law Dean Sujit Choudhry, was found to have violated the campus’s sexual harassment policy, and was given a slap on the wrists by the administration. Astronomer Geoff Marcy’s punishment for years of harassment of students was a … Continue reading »

Young Americans need required national service

Paula Fass, professor emerita of history | March 8, 2016

Hillary Clinton has advertised her concerns for children and has a long track record of supporting policies on their behalf, and almost all Democratic candidates as well as President Obama have urged that college be made more affordable. But no candidate has addressed a critical question: What do young Americans between 18 and 21 need? … Continue reading »

Witness to the history of agricultural and resource economics at Berkeley

David Zilberman, professor, agriculture and resource economics |

Forty-three years ago I arrived to Berkeley to begin my PhD in agricultural and resource economics (ARE), and without realizing it, I witnessed the evolution of this great department. As the department faces new challenges, I realized that the evolution of ARE has important lessons for its future and for university departments in general. One … Continue reading »

The birth of a new white supremacist movement

Jeremy Adam Smith, Editor, Greater Good Magazine | March 4, 2016

We’re seeing the birth of a new white supremacist movement in the US. I want to talk about the responsibility of white liberals and progressives for letting it happen. This movement has been growing, and growing bolder, since President Obama was elected. It’s not covert or subtle; it doesn’t pretend to be anything other than … Continue reading »

What do young women want from Bernie Sanders?

Jeremy Adam Smith, Editor, Greater Good Magazine | February 25, 2016

I’ve been watching the cross-generational dialogue here on the Berkeley Blog between Ph.D. candidate Peggy O’Donnell and professor emerita Robin Lakoff, which started with Lakoff’s interesting observation about how Hillary Clinton is being “hyperinterpreted” and concluded with O’Donnell’s defense of young women who vote for Bernie Sanders. Meanwhile, over in my corner of UC Berkeley, I’ve … Continue reading »

How to stop displacement

Mitchell Crispell, graduate student, city and regional planning | February 17, 2016

At the Urban Displacement Project, we get calls every week from cities struggling with gentrification and displacement in their communities. What can we do, they ask us, to maintain our diverse community? The strategies are out there—rent control, impact fees, inclusionary housing, and the list goes on. But the policymakers and advocates calling us don’t have … Continue reading »

People + values/creative chaos = sustainability

Sandra Bass, Asst Dean of Students, Director UC Berkeley Public Service Center | February 16, 2016

Every now and again my curiosity and limited ability to focus pays off. Back in graduate school, when I was praying to be hit by a lightening bolt of clarity to help me make sense of my dissertation research, I met a scholar who stalked disasters. Within hours of hearing about an earthquake, tsunami, or … Continue reading »