Berkeley in the News Archive

The links to the stories summarized on this page are time sensitive, so stories might no longer be online at that URL. We also include links to the original source publication itself.

Friday, 27 June 2014

1. Sandy Barbour's interim replacement as Cal athletic director: H. Michael Williams
Contra Costa Times (*requires registration)

Sandy Barbour will be stepping down on July 15 as Cal's athletic director, university officials have confirmed, and her interim replacement will be H. Michael Williams, a UC Berkeley Foundation trustee and former Cal wrestler. Barbour has led the department through a decade highlighted by 19 national team titles, the retrofitting and renovation of Memorial Stadium, and the building of a new athletic performance center. After July 15, she will begin putting together a sports-management program through UC Berkeley Extension. Other stories on this topic appeared in the San Francisco Chronicle (1) and San Francisco Chronicle (2). Full Story

2. Hacking for Good at the Fishackathon
KAZU (Monterey Bay Area Public Radio)

A Berkeley team of information students, including Isha Dandavate and Dan Tsai, recently won a national Fishackathon event that they participated in at the Monterey Bay Aquarium. The contest, sponsored by the U.S. State Department, challenged participants at locations around the country to create a mobile app that could track fish from where they're caught in a third world country to where consumers buy them. The app is needed to combat unsustainable fishing practices. To watch the team's presentation of their winning app, visit the, click on the video box, and move the cursor to the 26-minute mark. Full Story

3. Observatory: The Secret of the Disco Clam’s Light Show
New York Times (*requires registration)

Integrative biology graduate student Lindsey Dougherty has discovered the source of the light show that gave rise to the Ctenoides ales clam's nickname -- the disco clam. Most people have assumed that the clam's flashing lights were a form of bioluminescence, but she found instead that it's the edge of the clam's mantle lip, which is highly reflective on one side but not the other, and when the clam unfurls its lip, usually twice a second, the reflective surface flashes. Link to video. Full Story

4. All Things Considered: A CRISPR Way To Fix Faulty Genes

Berkeley molecular and cell biology professor Jennifer Doudna's founding contributions to the development of a revolutionary genetic engineering technique -- called CRISPR -- are discussed. The technology represents a major breakthrough in the fight against hereditary diseases. Link to audio. Full Story

5. The Organ Detective
Pacific Standard

Anthropology professor Nancy Scheper-Hughes is profiled for her long-term work tracking and fighting the illegal trade of human organs. Link to story currently unavailable online.

6. California's funding for school buildings needs an overhaul
San Francisco Chronicle

Jeff Vincent, deputy director of Berkeley's Center for Cities and Schools, writes about his center's study of K-12 school facilities funding in California, suggesting ways in which California's facility funding program could be overhauled. He concludes: "Implementing these changes will ensure a more strategic and efficient state role for ensuring safe, healthy and high-quality classrooms for all California children. We don't have the resources -- natural, financial or human -- to do otherwise." Full Story

7. Morning Edition: Latest Climate Change Report Paints Dire Picture For Business

A group of prominent business and political leaders, including former Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson and former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, have issued a report called "Risky Business" based on research co-authored by assistant public policy professor Solomon Hsiang. The report estimates the potential economic impact of global warming in different regions of the country and on major sectors of the economy if no changes are made, or if different levels of emission reductions occur. It concludes that two of the key issues – extreme heat and sea level rise – will disproportionately affect certain regions, and suggests that the most severe risks could be avoided through immediate action and investment in pollution reduction. Link to audio. Full Story

8. The Color of Carbon: How The EPA Clean Power Rule Could Help Communities Of Color
Huffington Post

Associate environmental science, policy and management professor Rachel Morello-Frosch co-writes this commentary about ways that the EPA's Clean Power Plan could benefit minority neighborhoods that are stressed by pollution. The writers conclude: "Another -- cooler and cleaner -- planet is possible and the EPA's Clean Power Plan proposal is a step in the right direction to address climate change. Yet as stakeholders debate the Plan over the next several months, it will be critical to factor in health and equity concerns, consider the distribution of gains and losses, and encourage the full participation of every community that can benefit from reducing both greenhouse gas emissions and harmful co-pollutants." Full Story

9. Opinion: Supremes Curb Obama’s Executive Overreach
Wall Street Journal (*requires registration)

Law professor John Yoo weighs in on the Supreme Court's unanimous ruling that President Obama's decision in 2012 to appoint executives during a Senate recess was unconstitutional. Asked if this was a blow to executive power, Professor Yoo says he thinks it's a rebuke to President Obama but, at the same time, it tries to protect presidential power for the next president. Link to video. Professor Yoo is also quoted on this topic in an article in the Wall Street Journal. Full Story

10. Why The Evolution Of Flight May Be Universal

Integrative biology professor Kevin Padian is quoted in a story about evolution and flight. "If I had to pick a group that should have evolved flight, it would be primates," he says. "Yet as far as we know, they never even evolved to glide. So, sometimes you look at evolution and wonder why.” Regarding Leonardo da Vinci's flapping wing designs, he says: "da Vinci didn’t know anything about the way the flight stroke and the wing had to provide lift and thrust.” Full Story

11. Death of the last Yosemite monarch, the grizzly bear
San Francisco Chronicle

A story about the California Historical Society's exhibition "Yosemite: A Storied Landscape" follows the curator's quest to track down a historic grizzly skin to feature in the exhibit. The curator, Kerry Tremain, a former editor of California Magazine, the campus' alumni journal, follows clues in a handwritten letter addressed to integrative biology professor Joseph Grinnell in April 20, 1918. He winds up at Berkeley's Museum of Vertebrate Zoology, where he meets with James Patton, the retired director of the museum. The skin, now on view at the exhibit, was of one of the last two grizzlies in Yosemite. "It's both exciting and tragic," Tremain says. "Yosemite would be quite different now if there were grizzly bears in it. They are magnificent beasts. We killed them all, and this is the story of the last one." Full Story

12. Obituary: Andrew G. Jameson, decorated WWII veteran, scholar, dies
San Francisco Chronicle

Alum Andrew G. Jameson, a former assistant vice chancellor for student affairs at Berkeley and professor of military science, died on June 5 at the age of 89. He was a well-decorated World War II veteran, and he had two doctorates – one in African history and one in Byzantine history – as well as a master's degree in library science. A memorial service will be held on July 16 at the Swedenborgian Church in San Francisco. Full Story

13. How Julia Morgan finally won U.S. architecture's highest honor
San Francisco Chronicle

Iconic California architect Julia Morgan is being posthumously recognized with the annual Gold Medal presented by the American Institute of Architects on Saturday. Morgan, who died in 1957, had been trained as an engineer at UC Berkeley before becoming the first woman to graduate from the L'Ecole de Beaux Arts in Paris in 1901. She went on to design more than 700 buildings, 21 of which are either National Historic Landmarks or are on the National Register of Historic Places. This article tells the story of how a group of Morgan's supporters campaigned to have her become the first female recipient of an honor that has been awarded for more than 100 years. Full Story

14. New independent bookstore Bookish opens in Berkeley

A new bookstore called Bookish has taken the place of Analog Books at 1816 Euclid Avenue just north of campus. The store focuses on new books, and it includes a section dedicated to books about Berkeley and its history. “It’s such a fabulous area to have a bookstore,” owner Gina Davidson says. “Students, professors, rabbis, philosophers, neighbors and their kids — they all come in. ... I thought I was well-read, but it’s very humbling talking to some customers.” Full Story

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