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HKS in the News June 6, 2012

1. A victory for curbs on public worker unions (Gergen) CNN

2. Achilles’ heel of social policy (Pritchett) The Indian Express (India)

3. Can Barry Diller Upend the TV Industry Again? (Crawford) Bloomberg News

4. Vaxess wins $70G to develop vaccine strip (Valenti) The Boston Herald

5. Wisconsin Shows Waning Clout Of Teachers Unions (Peterson) Investor’s Business Daily


A victory for curbs on public worker unions

CNN

June 6

Commentary by: David Gergen, Center for Public Leadership

Topic: The debate over public sector unions

Republican Gov. Scott Walker's convincing win Tuesday in Wisconsin was not just a victory for the governor himself, but a major triumph for conservatives in the fight to curb public employee unions. For the country's sake, however, it will be far better if this struggle remains a fight rather than all-out war.

In the run-up to Election Day, the Wisconsin recall vote was widely touted on the right as the second most important election of 2012. It was ignited when Walker pushed through a budget repair bill to curb the public employee unions. One key provision prohibited the unions from engaging in collective bargaining about anything other than pay (firefighters and police were exempted). Another provision said that a civil servant can no longer be forced to join a union and pay dues; there must be freedom of choice. …

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Achilles’ heel of social policy

The Indian Express (India)

June 6

Commentary by: Lant Pritchett

Topic: Social welfare in India

The clamour for the right to social pensions is another attempt to deal with the Indian state’s inability to provide adequate social protection to its poorest citizens through targeted programmes. India’s vulnerable continue to be excluded from social safety nets. The multi-layered problems with social welfare schemes can be summarised in one word: implementation. Implementation is the Achilles’ heel of Indian social policy. But why can’t the Indian state, with its colossal welfare apparatus, prioritise the poor and implement effectively? Some believe the problem is administrative discretion, which allows bureaucrats leeway to circumvent rules, impose red tape, and make side deals with select citizens. In this view, rights-based guarantees themselves will improve implementation — the bureaucracy can be coerced into compliance. …

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Can Barry Diller Upend the TV Industry Again?

Bloomberg News

June 5

Commentary by: Susan Crawford, Shorenstein Center

Topic: Broadcast regulations

… Television broadcasters are fighting a court battle with Aereo, a service launched this year in New York. Aereo has set up thousands of tiny antennas in Brooklyn that receive over-the- air television signals and send them into short-term digital storage at users’ request. Residents of Manhattan can receive on any device their personal antenna’s digital signal -- translated into an almost-real-time online river of ones and zeros. …

From the broadcasters’ perspective, Aereo is a diabolical Rube Goldberg system engineered by lawyers to take advantage of a favorable 2008 federal court decision. That ruling said the operator of a remote digital video recorder is not liable for copyright infringement. There’s a reason you can’t sign up for Aereo if you live in Hoboken, New Jersey; it’s in a different federal jurisdiction where that case may not carry weight. …

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Vaxess wins $70G to develop vaccine strip

The Boston Herald

June 5

Cited: Livio Valenti MPP 2013

Topic: Harvard University President’s Challenge for social entrepreneurship award

A MassChallenge finalist whose goal is to improve the delivery of vaccines in developing countries has been selected as the grand prize winner of the Harvard University President’s Challenge for social entrepreneurship. Vaxess Technologies, a Cambridge-based company founded by four Harvard students and alumni, will receive $70,000 for its plan to commercialize new technology that will allow vaccines to be transported without the need for refrigeration. …

The four founded Vaxess Technologies last December after taking a “Commercializing Science” class at Harvard Business School. One of them, Harvard Kennedy School student Livio Valenti, previously worked with the United Nations in Cambodia, where he was looking for new uses for locally grown silk when he stumbled upon the work of Tufts University professors David Kaplan and Fiorenzo Omenetto. …

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Wisconsin Shows Waning Clout Of Teachers Unions

Investor’s Business Daily

June 5

Cited: Research by Paul Peterson, Program on Education Policy and Governance

Topic: Public opinion of teachers unions

If there's one lesson from the Wisconsin recall, it's that unions are in big trouble. This is especially true of teachers' unions, which are being challenged by the public as never before.

A new poll from Harvard's Program on Education Policy and Governance and Education Next found the share of Americans with a positive view of teachers unions fell from 29% last year to 22% this year, a significant drop.

Writing in the Wall Street Journal, survey authors Paul Peterson, William Howell and Martin West noted that teachers unions are losing favor even among their own members. …

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Broadcast Notes

Lawrence Summers, Mossavar-Rahmani Center

Bloomberg , 6/6

Topic: The US Economy




This selection of media appearances is compiled by the Office of Communications and Public Affairs.

To submit an item please email Jane Finn-Foley


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