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.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

1. The Conversation Blog: What ‘Ivory Tower’ Gets Wrong
Chronicle of Higher Education Online (*requires registration)

Chancellor Nicholas Dirks responds to the new documentary The Ivory Tower, saying that while he welcomes depictions of challenges in higher education, the film made him "increasingly uneasy" and that ultimately it errs in its message that "all but a handful of elite private institutions have failed to deliver a product worth the exponentially increasing price of education." He notes: "Many of us in the public sector ... need to explain that we continue to provide extraordinary educations and critical research (along with much public service), despite the precipitous decline in public support and the still relatively low tuition we charge. My own institution, for example, is ranked close to Harvard for its research while it recruits almost as many Pell Grant recipients as the entire Ivy League combined. Forty percent of our students pay no tuition, while 60 percent complete their degrees without any outstanding debt, and for the rest who do, the average obligation is well under $20,000." Full Story

2. Researchers develop new bomb-detecting technology

A team led by mechanical engineering professor Xiang Zhang is developing new bomb detection technology using a laser sensor. Professor Zhang says the sensor can outperform bomb-sniffing dogs, and that it's so powerful, it can detect traces of explosive chemicals that are as small as one part per billion. The team has been working on the sensor for five years, and estimates it will be another three to five years before it's available for use in airports and other public places. Stories on this topic appeared in more than a dozen sources, including Gizmodo, AzoNano, Economic Times (India), Laser Focus World, Nanowerk News, and Uncover California. Full Story

3. Why Power in the Workplace Makes People Feel They Control Time
Wall Street Journal (*requires registration)

In experiments on the perception of time, psychology professor Serena Chen has been finding that people with more status and authority, or power, feel less stressed about time. "We all adhere to the same clocks," she says. "Yet we are showing that power can shift your perception of time. ... Power makes people have a broader time perspective. ... High-powered people are less stressed, but it also may be why they are overcommitted." Full Story

4. Q&A: Berkeley prof on teacher cohesion in LAUSD
KPCC Online (Southern California Public Radio)

A new report by the L.A. Teacher Ties Project, led by education professor Bruce Fuller, has found that teachers in charter and pilot Los Angeles public schools collaborate with and trust each other significantly more than teachers in L.A. Unified's large public high schools. In an interview about the report, he concludes: "One thing that looks really different is that principals delegate much more authority to these teachers in these small high schools. The other mechanism we’re seeing relates to more collaboration across subject matter. In small high schools it turns out that teachers meet across subject areas and so that creates all sorts of neat synthesis. The qualitative work, in short, is trying to identify these breakout practices that try to explain how teachers create these more cohesive communities." Full Story

5. RadioLab: Galapagos

Law professor Holly Doremus, co-director of Berkeley's Center for Law, Energy & the Environment, discusses conservation issues in a program on the Galapagos Islands. Link to audio. Full Story

6. Gallery: Fans celebrate Berkeley art museum milestone

At a public topping-out ceremony and block party held Thursday evening at the construction site of the new Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, community members signed the final steel beam before it was lifted by crane and put in place. Museum director Lawrence Rinder told the crowd that the new museum will have twice the space for education and collection access, so "the material richness of UC Berkeley’s collection will be accessible to a broader public,” and that it will also include two state-of-the art theaters to showcase the Pacific Film Archive’s collection “for the first time in our history.” The building is scheduled for completion in a year, and a "naked opening" -- without art -- is planned for next fall. It will take another six months after that to prepare the exhibitions for a full opening. Full Story

7. 10 Law Schools That Receive the Most Full-Time Applications
U.S. News & World Report

Berkeley's law school ranks fourth on a short list of U.S. law schools receiving the most full-time applications for the fall of 2013. Full Story

8. The Gods Seem to Have Been Working Out
Wall Street Journal (*requires registration)

Contemporary artists and authors in India are updating the looks of Hindu gods and goddesses, making them appear more buff and romantic. An example is author Amish Tripathi's best-selling graphic novels about Ravana, who kidnaps Rama's wife Sita in the epic Ramayana. Berkeley religious studies professor Layne Little says the author "is humanizing these characters into Tolkienean heroes," referring to J.R.R. Tolkien's The Lord of the Rings. Full Story

9. In new book UC Berkeley historian Waldo E. Martin, Jr. takes Black Panther Party's point of view
History News Network

A new book co-authored by history professor Waldo E. Martin, Jr., is reviewed as a "fascinating and comprehensive political history of the BPP [Black Panther Party], essentially told from the party’s perspective." Full Story

10. Signings widen gap between Real Madrid, Barcelona and rest of La Liga
Los Angeles Times

Spain's soccer team Real Madrid has reportedly acquired two of the world's top players -- Colombian star James Rodriguez and German star Toni Kross. The team is set to play Italy's Inter Milan at Berkeley's Memorial Stadium on Saturday, July 26, in the International Champions Cup opener. Full Story

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