Said and Done

Published monthly by the Office of the Dean
MIT School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences

November 2010 Edition 






Burchard Scholar Jennifer Lai wins Rhodes Scholarship
Jennifer Lai, a senior who is majoring in music and theater arts and in biological engineering has received a Rhodes Scholarship to study next year at Oxford University. Lai, 21, of Honolulu, joins a distinguished company of 43 former MIT recipients who have won the prestigious international scholarships.
More at MIT News


Nobel laureate Peter Diamond holds press conference 
As reported in last month's edition of Said and Done, Peter Diamond PhD '63, Institute Professor and professor of economics at MIT's School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences, won the Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel for 2010. A video of Diamond's press conference at MIT is now available:
Watch video



Economist Amy Finkelstein wins Presidential Early Career Award
On Friday, November 5, 2010 President Obama named Amy Finkelstein, Professor of Economics, a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Awards for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on science and engineering professionals in the early stages of their independent research careers.  

Ben Ross Schneider awarded a Ford Foundation International Chair  
Ben Ross Schneider has been awarded a Ford Foundation International Chair, making him Ford Foundation International Professor of Political Science as of January 1, 2011.  




An exaltation of concerts
This is a season of many concerts generated by the School's Music and Theater Arts section. For details on forthcoming performances by the Chamber Chorus, the MIT Symphony, Rambax, the Wind Ensemble, MITHAS, Jazz Combo, the Chamber Music Society, and many others, visit the School Events Calendar.

Boston Symphony Orchestra performs John Harbison's Symphony No. 1
Friday, November 26, 2010, 1:30–3:30pm; and Sunday, November 28, 8-10pm; James Levine, conductor; MIT students free with BSO College Card
More at BSO 

Bustani Seminars celebrate 25th anniversary
The Emile Bustani Middle East Seminar at MIT will celebrate its 25th Anniversary with two lectures this fall on contemporary Middle Eastern affairs, and two additional lectures in the Spring of 2011.
Full information




Pauline Maier's Ratification delivers new knowledge about the most consequential political debate in American history 
"This book is a stunning examination of what Maier calls 'the beginning of American national politics'—the debate that explains the way we Americans govern ourselves, resolve disputes, conduct diplomacy, choose leaders and protect our freedoms."  (from Bloomberg review) 
Full story

How wise are crowds?
By melding economics and engineering, researchers show that as social networks get larger, they usually get better at sorting fact from fiction.
Story by Larry Hardesty at MIT News

How can we improve education worldwide?
Researchers at the School’s Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL) are working to take the guesswork out of poverty alleviation programs by providing the scientific evidence needed to guide global policy. Cited by the New York Times as a prime example of how economics can “make the world a better place,” J-PAL uses methods similar to those used in medicine—systematic, randomized evaluations—to test the effectiveness of development programs, including education initiatives.

MIT student’s research finds that public debt is concentrated in advanced economies
Global financial crisis highlights gulf between advanced and emerging nations. The global financial crisis has sharply increased public debt levels, especially in the world’s advanced economies, according to a survey co-authored by MIT junior Mengjie Ding, and published online in the Financial Times.
Full story at MIT News   

The research of this School appears principally in the form of books, as well as music and theater productions. These gems of the School provide new knowledge and analysis, innovation and insight, guidance for policy, and nourishment for lives. 
Take a look



Fox Harrell convenes thought-leaders to catalyze new research 
Associate Professor D. Fox Harrell recently led a joint workshop with the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Science Foundation (NSF), focused on supporting research informed by both arts and science disciplines. 

MIT-Germany Seed Fund launched
MIT International Science and Technology Initiatives (MISTI) has launched the MIT Germany Seed Fund, made possible through generous support from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research. The new fund will offer research-initiation grants to MIT faculty and their counterparts in Germany. A focus will be on topics related to health, the environment, energy and technological innovation. 

New Faculty 2010 
The School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences is pleased to present the most recent new members of the School's faculty. They come with diverse backgrounds and vast knowledge in their fields: digital media, linguistic anthropology, economics, contemporary literature and media studies, French studies, and political science.  
Photographs and Bios

Michael Greenstone on deficit spending
As deficit hawks appear poised for victory at the polls, the MIT economics professor presents the case for more spending on infrastructure and R&D.
Peter Dizikes, MIT News Office

Explained: Currency wars
Countries are clashing over their currency prices. Why?
Peter Dizikes, MIT News Office

MIT students expand horizons as Burchard Scholars | Apply by December 1, 2010
The Program brings together MIT sophomores and juniors and distinguished faculty from the School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences for eight elegant dinner-seminars at MIT’s Faculty Club 
More + How to apply




Gara LaMarche, CEO of Atlantic Philanthropies
Reclaiming the Moral Life of Philantrophy
Presented by the Center for International Studies, Starr Forum
Watch video

Interview with John Harbison, Composer and Institute Professor 
Boston Symphony Orchestra Media Center
Interview with John Harbison and commentary on his works
Watch at BSO Media Center

Andrew Bacevich, Professor of International Relations and History, Boston University
Washington Rules: America's Path to Permanent War
In a Starr Forum event, presented by the Center for International Studies, Bacevich describes an ineffective national security consensus that has, over time, “thrust us into a situation which is really akin to permanent war.”  
Watch video 




Visit Calendar

The daily answer to what's happening

Find us on Facebook
Great Fans Change the World

Follow us on Twitter
Great ideas in 140 characters

RSS News
RSS Multimedia