By 2000, Eric Maskin needed a break. Then the Louis Berkman Professor of Economics at Harvard, his days were a blur of graduate student advising, teaching, and committee meetings. Wanting more time to pursue his research, he did the improbable: He left Harvard.Now, the prodigal economist has returned.“It’s interesting, coming back to this department, how many of the same people are still here,” Maskin said one afternoon, his spacious Littauer Center office still half-buried under cardboard boxes. “They even look pretty much the same — maybe a little bit grayer.”Maskin brought back a few gray hairs of his own after more than a decade at the Institute for Advanced Study (IAS) in Princeton, N.J. But when he returned to the department as a professor of economics in January, he was also toting a hefty gold medal — the 2007 Nobel Prize in economics.Maskin received the honor for a career’s worth of contributions to the field of mechanism design, or as he explains it, “economics in reverse.” Now a staple of game theory economics, mechanism design theory grew in part from Maskin’s work at Harvard, his on-and-off home since his undergraduate days more than 40 years ago.Instead of starting with a situation and trying to predict the outcome it leads to, market design economists start with the outcome they want and try to create a scenario — the “game” in game theory — that gives rise to that outcome. Unlike the vast majority of economics, which studies markets and world conditions as they are, Maskin and his colleagues explore how markets could be created or tweaked to achieve social goals.“I get annoyed by the claim that ‘the invisible hand’ — i.e., markets by themselves — will take care of everything,” he said. “We know, from theory, that for very good reasons some markets are not going to work the way we would wish them to,” a statement to which the financial and housing market crashes of recent years attest, he added.Maskin, who grew up in small-town Alpine, N.J., arrived at Harvard in 1968 to study mathematics. On a whim, he took a course with the legendary economist Kenneth Arrow that covered “a hodgepodge of topics from the frontier of economic theory,” including the nascent field of mechanism design.“This work was a revelation to me,” Maskin wrote in his Nobel autobiography. “It had the precision, rigor, and sometimes the beauty of pure mathematics and also addressed problems of real social importance — an irresistible combination.”Maskin stayed on to pursue a doctorate in applied mathematics, a flexible program that allowed him to explore his budding interests in game theory and mechanism design. Arrow, his adviser, urged him on, despite the fact that no textbooks on the subject existed at the time. Maskin completed his Ph.D. in just four years from Harvard’s Graduate School of Arts and Sciences.After a postdoctoral year in England, he took a job in 1977 at Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) economics department, where he taught the first course in game theory, then viewed as something of a fringe topic.“Within less than 10 years, there was a revolution,” Maskin said. “By the mid-1980s, it was required as part of the core curriculum.”He left MIT for Harvard in 1985. At both universities, he was known for mentoring students, many of whom became his close collaborators. But after 15 years, the place that once brought vitality to his work had become a drain for him. Maskin left Harvard for IAS, an independent institution that gave him free rein to tackle his research.The move to Princeton coincided with a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to buy physicist Albert Einstein’s former home, where Einstein lived from 1936 until his death in 1955. (The property can only be sold to IAS faculty.) On Halloween, Maskin would dress as Einstein, while his wife would carve an E=mc2 pumpkin for the front porch.Then came the Nobel Prize, which he shared with Roger B. Myerson and the late Leonid Hurwicz. Maskin steadfastly maintains that the honor had little effect on his work or standing within the world of economics, but the prize did bring mechanism design to the broader public.“The Nobel is a very public thing,” he said. “Having the wider audience has been interesting and worthwhile, but it also makes you think carefully about what you say, because it might end up in the papers.”The decision to return to Harvard was prompted by a combination of factors — “these things usually are,” Maskin said. He missed the intellectual stimulation of daily interactions with faculty and students. He and his wife wanted to be closer to their 25-year-old disabled son, who recently moved to an assisted-living community in Western Massachusetts. (The couple also has a daughter, a senior at Bryn Mawr College.)Maskin is eager to reunite with his chamber music group, a rotating lineup of Boston-area economists, with whom he plays clarinet. He’s also hoping to find some suitable squash partners. “I’m a mediocre player, but an enthusiastic one,” he said. During the interview, Ben Friedman, William Joseph Maier Professor of Political Economy and a fellow wallbanger, stuck his head in the door to say hello. “He’s much too good for me,” Maskin lamented after he left.And, of course, there’s the familiar rush of being back in front of a chalkboard. This semester, Maskin is teaching an undergraduate course in game theory, his first in years.“I wasn’t sure, when the course started, what was going to happen,” he said. “Was I just going to get up there and do all the talking? But the students are full of things to say.”It turns out that Harvard still has something to offer a Nobel Prize winner. “I’d been sitting in relative isolation from students at the institute,” Maskin said. “I didn’t realize how much I’d missed that energy.”
Authors Emily Bazelon and R.J. Palacio on Monday joined Richard Weissbourd, director of the Human Development and Psychology Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE), at Longfellow Hall to trade ideas about ending bullying at U.S. schools.Most children aren’t bullies, and the incidents of bullying are fairly infrequent, the speakers agreed. Still, the problem is on the rise, and increasingly tied to short- and long-term emotional consequences.“I think that we do have a real problem if we define it properly,” said Bazelon, a senior editor for Slate and author of “Sticks and Stones: Defeating the Culture of Bullying and Rediscovering the Power of Character and Empathy.” “To me the definition of bullying that makes the most sense is to think of it as verbal or physical harassment that repeats over time and involves a power imbalance.”That harassment has gained disturbing traction with the growth of the Internet. The pain of students hounded in schoolyards, on buses, and in classrooms has intensified as bullies have used social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook to extend their reach.But social media outlets, while part of the problem, can also be an important part of the solution. Facebook is poised to make a difference, said Bazelon, who cited the company’s move to punish users who break their bullying rules with a group page by not letting them create another group page for a month.“Ninety-four percent of the kids who get those messages don’t reoffend,” said Bazelon, citing an internal study.Social media companies “actually have a lot of influence, but in order to use it, they have to decide they are OK enforcing social norms,” she said. “And what they really want is for people to enforce their own norms on Facebook. And that sounds like a good idea, but the problem is how is that going to happen?”The idea of standing up to bullies might have a lot of appeal, but to act can prove difficult, as Bazelon illustrated through personal experience, describing how she was bullied on the train when she attempted to stop a group of teens from harassing an older man.“I told the kids to stop and they totally turned on me. They yelled at me in the car. I got off, they got off with me. They followed me off the platform, up the escalator into Union Station, yelling at me the whole way. And I was so uncomfortable. … That experience reminded me that this whole idea that you are supposed to confront a bully in the moment, someone who is more powerful, probably bigger than you, and is being really aggressive, that is a tough thing to ask.”She pointed to the findings of a researcher and longtime guidance counselor in Maine who argues that “instead of standing up to bullies, we need to help kids stand with victims.”“That suggests to me that we need to give kids a variety of strategies that are actually realistic for them.”The panelists agreed that discouraging bullying requires a variety of strategies, and a commitment from teachers, school administrators, and students. But parents can play the most pivotal role by helping their children place an emphasis on empathy and character building, they said.Weissbourd, who pushed for parents to cultivate a strong sense of morality in their children in his 2009 book, “The Parents We Mean to Be,” said an important part of the solution involves creating social norms where kids “don’t feel powerful degrading other kids — they feel powerful including other kids.”“We have to help kids value other people,” he added, “and we also help them value people who are different from them.”Empathy is a key factor, stressed Palacio, a former art director and book jacket designer turned fiction writer whose debut, “Wonder,” concerns a young boy with a severe facial deformity who wants to attend a mainstream school.The novel, published last year, “is not a really book about bullying,” said Palacio. “It’s a book about what I hoped would be the antithesis to bullying, which is about spreading empathy. … Empathy is something that is very difficult to teach, but it is something that can be inspired in children.”Anti-bullying programs are on the rise in U.S. schools. Forty-six states now have anti-bullying laws, according to the Department of Education, which hosted the first summit on bullying prevention in 2010. The federal government has also developed its own website devoted to the issue, stopbullying.gov, managed by the Department of Health and Human Services.Celebrities have joined the conversation. Pop sensation Lady Gaga launched her Born This Way Foundation at Harvard last February during an HGSE-sponsored discussion at Sanders Theatre that drew an influential list of voices against bullying, including Oprah Winfrey and U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius.The singer said she hoped her initiative, a collaboration with Harvard’s Berkman Center for Internet & Society, would provide “a transformative change in culture over time.”Shortly after Gaga launched her foundation, Dean Kathleen McCartney of HGSE and Weissbourd backed the effort in a CNN article.“Bullying is not a rite of passage,” they wrote, “it is a human rights issue.”
When senior graphic design major Megan Malley chose sustainability as the topic of her thesis project, she discovered more than 100 colleges across the country have banned the sale of plastic water bottles on campus. “I was surprised that a university as socially and environmentally conscious as Notre Dame has not considered doing the same,” she said. Today, Malley will showcase a portion of Notre Dame’s waste through an large artistic installation on South Quad. She collected 1,000 plastic water bottles from around campus, and she will display the bottles to demonstrate the scale of waste generated by plastic bottle use. Malley said she hopes displaying the statistic in a physical way will help people understand the environmental impact of the waste more clearly. “Growing up in the Northwest, I was always taught to consider my carbon footprint, so my family recycled and composted everything we could,” Malley, a resident of Seattle, said. Through her research, Malley discovered plastic water bottles are the fastest growing form of waste in the United States. She said she was incredulous such a large environmental impact results from a product whose manufacture is unnecessary in the first place. The use of disposable water bottles is even more unnecessary at Notre Dame than most other locations, Malley said. “Every building has at least one drinking fountain with clean and safe water, and over 32 have hydration stations that fill large bottles in seconds,” Malley said. “The convenience of clean tap water makes it exceptionally easy to avoid spending money on water bottles.” Malley said her research demonstrated that advertising from the plastic water bottle industry leads consumers to believe bottled water is somehow safer than tap water. In reality, tap water undergoes stricter and more frequent health checks, she said. Malley said she hopes her thesis project will educate the campus about the day-to-day impact of using disposable bottles and spark activism in the Notre Dame community. Her education tools include today’s installation, her website, takeawayplastic.com and a book and a film she is creating for the project. “Eventually, I hope to enable an official campus-wide ban [on the sale of plastic water bottles],” Malley said. Malley said students should more closely consider the impact their daily habits have on the environment. As an academic community, Notre Dame should be more conscious of its effect on the environment, she said, and should make decisions to reduce plastic waste as much as possible. “By refusing to purchase bottled water, a college campus can substantially decrease the plastic waste generated each year,” she said. Malley’s thesis project will be displayed in the Snite Museum of Art from Apr. 7 to May 20. The exhibit will include her book, video and photos of her installation.
A Peruvian Soldier peers from a hole in the ground outside the home of the Japanese ambassador in Lima, Peru, on April 23, 1997. The previous day, Peruvian troops stormed the residence and ended a four-month hostage crisis, freeing 72 captives of the rebel group Túpac Amaru Revolutionary Movement (MRTA). Soldiers used tunnels to approach the residence and surprise insurgents. Operation Chavín de Huántar was to last four minutes, but it took more than 40, according to one of the officers who led the operation. By Dialogo January 01, 2013
For example, in their efforts to dismantle drug trafficking infrastructure, Peruvian security forces have destroyed at least 54 clandestine landing strips used by narco-traffickers since 2011. The majority of the runways were 500 meters long, 10 meters wide and were located in the VRAEM. “The most important aspect is that measures have been adopted and each one of them has been estimated to encourage VRAEM’s sustained progress, which is irreversible,” Luis Rojas, the executive secretary of the Multisectoral Commission for Pacification and Economic Development of the VRAEM, told reporters. A world free of drugs and crime In 2012, criminal organizations cultivated more than 60,000 hectares of coca crops in Perú, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Perú is home to 13-coca growing regions, with 60,400 hectares used for coca cultivation. Ninety-three percent of the country’s coca is used for the drug trade, with the remaining plants used for traditional consumption and industrial use, according to Peru’s National Commission for a Drug-Free Life (DEVIDA). Security operations in the VRAEM “The most important aspect is that measures have been adopted and each one of them has been estimated to encourage VRAEM’s sustained progress, which is irreversible,” Luis Rojas, the executive secretary of the Multisectoral Commission for Pacification and Economic Development of the VRAEM, told reporters. In 2012, criminal organizations cultivated more than 60,000 hectares of coca crops in Perú, according to the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime. Perú is home to 13-coca growing regions, with 60,400 hectares used for coca cultivation. Ninety-three percent of the country’s coca is used for the drug trade, with the remaining plants used for traditional consumption and industrial use, according to Peru’s National Commission for a Drug-Free Life (DEVIDA). Army officials suspect Meléndez Borda is a cousin of the late Shining Path leader Orlando Alejandro Borda Casafranco, who was also known as “Comrade Alipio.” The Armed Forces killed Comrade Alipio during a military operation in the VRAEM in August 2013. Confronting and capturing Shining Path operatives, cracking down on narco-flights, dismantling the infrastructure used by drug trafficking groups to transport drugs, and improving social conditions in the region are all part of the federal government’s strategy to defeat drug trafficking in the VRAEM. The Peruvian Army recently captured two suspected members of the Shining Path terrorist group following a gunfight in the Valley of the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro Rivers (VRAEM) region. Army officials suspect Meléndez Borda is a cousin of the late Shining Path leader Orlando Alejandro Borda Casafranco, who was also known as “Comrade Alipio.” The Armed Forces killed Comrade Alipio during a military operation in the VRAEM in August 2013. While security forces are combatting drug trafficking, the federal government is taking steps to improve social conditions in the VRAEM. The government has approved about $586 million (USD) to develop social programs, housing, agriculture and a highway for residents in the VRAEM, according to Luis Rojas, the executive secretary of the Multisectoral Commission for Pacification and Economic Development of the VRAEM. The government is also providing technical training to students as old as 40, to help them develop skills to get jobs. This training initiative and other social programs sponsored by the government have helped 200,000 people. Security operations in the VRAEM The Peruvian Army recently captured two suspected members of the Shining Path terrorist group following a gunfight in the Valley of the Apurimac, Ene and Mantaro Rivers (VRAEM) region. César Valencia Curo and Emilio Meléndez Borda, both identified as suspects by the military, were captured in a vehicle in the southern province of Huanta shortly after midnight on November 13. Soldiers also arrested the vehicle’s driver, Josías Romero, and a woman who said she is his wife; they seized an array of firearms and ammunition as well. By Dialogo November 21, 2014 The Shining Path is allied with narco-traffickers in the VRAEM, which is the world’s top region for cultivating coca, the main ingredient used to make cocaine. The organization uses drug trafficking revenue to funds its terrorist operations. International cooperation is an important component of the fight against narco-flights. For instance, Peruvian and Bolivian officials recently agreed to share real-time information regarding suspicious planes traveling across the border the two country’s share. This will help security forces interdict the high volume of cocaine produced in Perú and transported into Bolivia. About half of the 450 tons of cocaine produced in Perú annually is flown to Bolivia by plane before being routed to Central America, North America, Brazil, Mexico, Europe and Asia. The Shining Path is allied with narco-traffickers in the VRAEM, which is the world’s top region for cultivating coca, the main ingredient used to make cocaine. The organization uses drug trafficking revenue to funds its terrorist operations. Confronting and capturing Shining Path operatives, cracking down on narco-flights, dismantling the infrastructure used by drug trafficking groups to transport drugs, and improving social conditions in the region are all part of the federal government’s strategy to defeat drug trafficking in the VRAEM. For example, in their efforts to dismantle drug trafficking infrastructure, Peruvian security forces have destroyed at least 54 clandestine landing strips used by narco-traffickers since 2011. The majority of the runways were 500 meters long, 10 meters wide and were located in the VRAEM. International cooperation is an important component of the fight against narco-flights. For instance, Peruvian and Bolivian officials recently agreed to share real-time information regarding suspicious planes traveling across the border the two country’s share. This will help security forces interdict the high volume of cocaine produced in Perú and transported into Bolivia. About half of the 450 tons of cocaine produced in Perú annually is flown to Bolivia by plane before being routed to Central America, North America, Brazil, Mexico, Europe and Asia. The government is also providing technical training to students as old as 40, to help them develop skills to get jobs. This training initiative and other social programs sponsored by the government have helped 200,000 people. While security forces are combatting drug trafficking, the federal government is taking steps to improve social conditions in the VRAEM. The government has approved about $586 million (USD) to develop social programs, housing, agriculture and a highway for residents in the VRAEM, according to Luis Rojas, the executive secretary of the Multisectoral Commission for Pacification and Economic Development of the VRAEM. César Valencia Curo and Emilio Meléndez Borda, both identified as suspects by the military, were captured in a vehicle in the southern province of Huanta shortly after midnight on November 13. Soldiers also arrested the vehicle’s driver, Josías Romero, and a woman who said she is his wife; they seized an array of firearms and ammunition as well.
continue reading » 2SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr It is an exciting time to be a bank or credit union in the auto lending marketplace!More than ever before, borrowers are seeking out unique solutions for financing their vehicles, and the current market leans favorably toward financial institutions offering alternative approaches to auto lending.Additionally, there has been an increase in used vehicle purchases and trade-ins over the purchase of brand new vehicles.Several factors lend themselves to these changes in buyer behaviors, namely:The rise of new car prices – More model updates, technological advancements, and cosmetic choices have led to historically high monthly car payment averages.
ShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr continue reading » As with anything worth doing, board assessments are worth doing well—especially if the board has had an aversion to being “evaluated.” Committing to an assessment process begins with developing a shared understanding of what the board plans to accomplish and a realization that the path to achieving that goal might include a few branches and stones. But, the destination will be worth the trips.Remember that the board has been in tough conversations before and come out on the other side stronger, more informed and an overall better team. With an assessment though, the journey is specifically designed to help the board get better. That’s not an unintended byproduct; that is the product.The board can begin the assessment process by developing a charge of commitment-what we call a board-organizing principle or a BOP for short (and because saying BOP is fun and catches people’s attention). A BOP is a declarative statement of how the board will operate as a governing, officiating body over the long term.Think about the BOP like this. As a board, you’ve had a governing principle already, though it’s likely that it’s just been understood and unspoken. A BOP intentionally informs a board’s actions and engagement to help it achieve new levels of performance. It answers the question of why we (specifically this board) should exist beyond the regulatory reasons.
Most Twitter threads consist of people supporting or not supporting the original tweet. Many of them are very funny, some are deadly serious, some are angry, some are sad. It’s a cornucopia of the human emotional spectrum! But every so often, a Twitter thread comes along that employs humor, justice, and the human spirit.A small corner of the internet in a Twitter thread—one that took place as the election results began to unfold and the enormity of Donald Trump’s loss became clearer and clearer to MAGA types across the internet—brought people from all over the world (and possibly the galaxy) together. An account mostly known for following both American and European rules football and that also likes trolling libs posted: “Oooohhhh NOOOOO. WHAT ARE WE DOING. WAKE UP Y’ALL!!!! TRUMP IS HERE TO SAVE US. My heart can’t take this any longer. I’m leaving. I’ll be headed to Mexico. They will take care of me. Thanks for nothing USA. IM DONE. MY HEART HURTS. THESE KIDS!!!!” The fun began there.- Advertisement – – Advertisement –
“Private entities operating in the open market and financing their business exclusively from sales activities depend on the quality of their services, communication with the market and their innovation, which motivates them to continuous development and is the only long-term sustainable business model. It is necessary to soften the borders between special hospitals, rehabilitation and wellness centers in order to approach European standards of health tourism and provide guests with a richer service.”, Said Kolar, and Medak agrees with her, who believes that such regulations bring more transparent business, a simpler tax policy and a simpler process of hiring employees. Adviser to the Management Board of Terme Tuhelj Ivana Kolar considers that the Law enabling the registration of economic activity in health tourism brings great benefits, primarily for special hospitals and health centers that have not yet operated as companies and have not been in the VAT system. “Here I would especially like to highlight thallasotherapy, it uses marine natural healing factors that favorably affect the respiratory system which is especially important at this time of pandemic. This is an opportunity to use all our potentials and put a lot of hotels along the coast in the function of health tourism, which would significantly extend the existing tourist season. However, one of the key preconditions for this is the privatization of special hospitals and health resorts, which is stated in the Action Plan for the Development of Health Tourism in the Republic of Croatia prepared by the Institute for Tourism.”, Points out Medak and adds that it is crucial to connect all stakeholders in the story, in which the key role should be played by the Health Tourism Association of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce. According to all strategies for the development of the domestic tourist offer, health tourism has a priority role, but this segment has also suffered a heavy blow due to the coronavirus pandemic. On the other hand, Korona has become aware of the importance of health globally, which could be a great advantage in the development of Croatia as a leading destination for health tourism in the future. Strengthening continental tourism capacities would bring more balanced economic development and reduce seasonality, but a prerequisite for all this is a quality and well-educated workforce. All our interlocutors agree with this, so they pay special attention to employees and their education. He agrees with that Marcel Medak, president of the Health Tourism Association of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce and director of the company Sunčane toplice. He believes that in the future the demand of patients for certain services, such as the rehabilitation of chronic diseases, will fall, but he also sees this as a great chance for institutions that are ready to turn more strongly to the market. Another great strength of health tourism is that most of the facilities are located in the interior of Croatia and provide great potential for the development of continental tourism, and good examples of such development can be seen in neighboring countries. “The biggest staffing problem is the chronic lack of a specialist doctor, which we also had in Sunčane toplice, so we imported two doctors from BiH and Serbia.”Explains Medak and concludes that currently the biggest challenge is the promotion of health tourism, especially through the CNTB, for which it is necessary to significantly increase funding. Photo: Terme Tuhelj “Terme Tuhelj has always been actively cooperating with the Secondary Catering School in Zabok, which is the foundation of the development of the competence center, and we will be very happy to include all those who actively participate in the development of tourism in its work and activities. It is difficult to have staff in tourism in the whole of Croatia, Zagorje is no exception, so Terme has developed internal protocols for training, education and development of its employees, from employment to the entire career. There have been cases of hiring foreign staff, but in small numbers, for now the team manages to fill the staff from Croatia, mostly from Zagorje and the surrounding area.”, Said Horvat, and Medak thinks similarly, pointing out that in Sunčane toplice they had no problems finding workers, as did other employers in health tourism. In addition to the existing educational institutions, the Regional Center of Competence in Tourism and Hospitality in Zabok will soon be established. The center should contribute to the education of future staff needed in this sector, adult education and monitoring of new technologies and trends in Europe and the world, and this is especially welcomed in Treme Tuhelj. I Krešimir Škof, Deputy Director of the Special Hospital for Medical Rehabilitation Stubičke Toplice, which is registered for health tourism, emphasizes that the new legislative framework is good because there is no need to establish a subsidiary, but everything is done “under the same hat”. However, he says that the registration of the activity itself means nothing if it is not accompanied by an adequate offer. “If the facilities are old and of poor quality, if the service does not meet the criteria of a demanding market and if there is no evidence of quality, there is no progress in the market. We have invested in our workers, services and facilities for years – over HRK 80 million has been invested in the last ten yearsSaid the Bishop.
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