2003

Faculty news

Michael Breen, assistant professor of history and humanities, has been designated an ACLS/Andrew W. Mellon Foundation Junior Faculty Fellow. In his research project, “Law, City, and King: The Making of French Absolutism in Dijon (1595–1766),” Breen explores the role of legal culture in the development of the early modern French state by analyzing the avocats who dominated Dijon’s city council.

Paul Gronke, associate professor of political science, was an invited panelist at a recent conference at the National Defense University, in Washington, D.C., commemorating “The All Volunteer Force: 30 Years of Service.” Panelists and speakers included current and past government officials such as Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and Deputy Secretary Paul Wolfowitz. Gronke has been engaged in an ongoing study that examines whether America’s decision to develop the all-volunteer force has frayed or broken links between citizens and soldiers. Gronke’s paper, co-written with Peter Feaver (Duke) and Major David Filer (West Point), focused on the ways in which the National Guard and Reserves acts as a bridge between “the mass and the brass.”

Jeffrey Parker, George Hay professor of economics, received an $8,000 grant from the Northwest Academic Computing Consortium for a two-year web-based experiment in the economics of technological innovation. Parker’s major field of interest is macroeconomics, with special emphasis on labor market issues and unemployment. His recent research focuses on the connection between education and labor market flexibility and the implications that this has for aggregate unemployment.
   
reisberg and dalai lama picture
Professor of psychology Daniel Reisberg
and the Tibetan Dalai Lama
Professor of psychology Daniel Reisberg recently explored the nature of mental imagery with three other psychologists and four Buddhists—including the Dalai Lama. Reisberg was one of the scientists chosen to take part in a panel session at the “Investigating the Mind: Exchanges between Buddhism and Biobehavioral Science” conference, which took place in Boston in September. Reisberg and the other panel participants explored visual mental imagery and the way this imagery changes with extensive training, a topic that has received little attention from Western scientists. The Buddhists have not only been examining these skills in detail for many years, but have been practicing them through various techniques of meditation. A strong sense of the need for collaborative research and a feeling of partnership between the psychologists and the Buddhists has grown out of the conference experience, and the mental imagery panel participants plan to continue their conversation through email—from the lab to the monastery and back.

Associate professor of sociology Marc Schneiberg has been awarded $85,000 by the National Science Foundation to support his study, “Private, Public, or Cooperative? Organizational Form and Economic Diversity in the U.S. Electrical Utility Industry, 1900–1950.” Schneiberg and two of his students will analyze when and how American consumers and business groups can pursue alternatives to private, for-profit provision by large electrical utility corporations. The study will provide information on policy options currently being debated in the industry, notably the use of public ownership and cooperatives to solve regulatory failures in electrical utility markets.

Paul A. Silverstein, assistant professor of anthropology, has received a Fulbright-Hays grant for research in Morocco during the 2003–04 academic year. Silverstein will investigate the social relevance of Berber cultural associations in the southeastern Moroccan province of Errachidia. Funding from the Fulbright-Hays program will supplement a semester paid leave awarded by the college.

A new book of poetry by Lisa Steinman, Kenan Professor of English and Humanities, has just been published by the University of Tampa Press. Carslaw’s Sequences takes its name from a mathematical series that cannot be tidily summed, a concept that intrigued Steinman. Poet Patricia Goedicke said of Carslaw’s Sequences that “the very existence of this book is comforting, soothing, fortifying. It’s clear evidence that, in this world of wise leaders gone mad, there is yet one wise woman among us.” Steinman was winner of the Oregon Book Award in 1993 for All That Comes to Light, another book of poetry. End of Article

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2003
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