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HKS in the News March 5, 2012

1. God and Caesar in America (Putnam) Foreign Affairs

2. Painting a New Path at the Kennedy School (Mansbridge) Harvard Crimson

3. Government Department Changes Advising, Course Requirements Harvard Crimson

4. Even in a ‘woman’s world,’ gender doesn’t matter (Nye) Globe & Mail (Toronto, CA)

5. Conference Examines One-State Solution Harvard Crimson

6. Onus on stores to close loophole on perks (Seglin) London Free Press

God and Caesar in America

Foreign Affairs


Article co-written by: Robert Putnam, Saguaro Seminar

Topic: Mixing religion and politics

In the wake of the Great Recession it would seem natural that the 2012 election would be fought over economic issues. Yet so far in the Republican primaries, we have seen social issues, and religion especially, move to the forefront….

Time will tell whether all this God talk will be good for the Republicans in November -- we suspect not….While the Republican base has become ever more committed to mixing religion and politics, the rest of the country has been moving in the opposite direction.

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Painting a New Path at the Kennedy School

Harvard Crimson

March 5

Quoted: Jane Mansbridge, Women and Public Policy Program

Topic: Representations of female leaders at Harvard

...Jane J. Mansbridge, who has been a professor at the Kennedy School since 1996, is intimately familiar with issues of gender disparity at the Kennedy School, and has been a staunch advocate for women over the years through groups such as the Women and Public Policy Program at HKS....

Because of Mansbridge’s elbow grease, a portrait of Ida B. Wells—an African-American journalist and early civil rights activist—now hangs in the Fainsod Room at the Kennedy School.

The portrait was commissioned in 2006 and cost $10,000. Then-president Lawrence H. Summers approved the request to use the president’s fund to cover the expense.

“Things like portraits on a wall can have real effects on people’s behavior,” says Mansbridge. “John Bargh and other psychologists of automaticity show these effects can be unconscious—if you’re in a room where all the portraits are of white males, you’re being primed to think that white males run everything.”

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Government Department Changes Advising, Course Requirements

Harvard Crimson

March 5

Cited: HKS

Topic: Changes in the undergraduate government concentration

Future government concentrators will benefit from a strengthened advising program that will pair faculty members with undergraduates, following a set of reforms unanimously approved by the department faculty last Thursday.

The changes primarily affect students during their sophomore spring and junior fall semesters, when undergraduates are deciding their academic paths within the concentration. The reforms will roll out this fall and will begin with the class of 2015. Major changes include a research seminar requirement and increased opportunities to interact with professors directly through a new faculty mentorship program....

Lastly, the department will compile a list of courses at the Harvard Kennedy School that qualify as government electives, simplifying the earlier process that required students to petition to take a course from outside the Faculty of Arts and Sciences.

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Even in a ‘woman’s world,’ gender doesn’t matter

Globe & Mail (Toronto, CA)

March 3

Commentary by: Joseph Nye

Topic: Gender and leadership

So, does gender really matter in leadership? In terms of stereotypes, various psychological studies show that men gravitate to the hard power of command, while women intuitively understand the soft power of attraction and persuasion. Americans tend to describe leadership with tough male stereotypes, but recent leadership studies show increased success for what was once considered a “feminine style.”

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Conference Examines One-State Solution

Harvard Crimson

March 5

Cited: HKS

Topic: One-state conference

The conference was also cited in an editorial in The Boston Globe.

Despite protests from within and outside of the University calling for the administration to cancel the One-State conference at the Harvard Kennedy School this weekend, panelists at the sold-out conference fired back at critics and advocated for the consideration of alternative solutions to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Panels at the two-day conference examined the two-state approach, questioned how a one-state solution would work, and discussed obstacles to the realization of such a solution. Students and scholars packed into the Institute of Politics Forum to participate in the event, often challenging speakers with lengthy and detailed questions and comments.

Though critics of the conference anticipated the panelists would only present arguments for a one-state solution, attendees emphasized that the conference facilitated discussion and dialogue on varied possibilities.

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Onus on stores to close loophole on perks

London Free Press

March 3

Column by: Jeffrey Seglin

Topic: The importance of making clear rules

Occasionally, when I give an assignment to a class, I ask them to execute the task in a particular order.

"Choose a target publication for the article you're writing," the assignment might start, "and then study that publication and develop your article specifically for its audience."

Of course, once they've written their articles, I have no real way to tell if they did it in the order I asked. I just set the rules, ask them to follow them and trust that they will.

But my goal is to make sure that they know what my expectations and desires are for the assignment.

In a business setting, when bosses don't make the rules clear, employees might end up either fearing for their jobs because of an unintended rules violation or they might take advantage of the ambiguity and twist it in their favour.

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Broadcast Notes

Nicholas Burns, Future of Diplomacy Project

CNN: “State of the Union with Candy Crowley,” 3/4

Topic: Talks between Israeli and U.S. leaders this week

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

To submit an item please email Bryan Galcik

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