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UCI Social Sciences 


Welcome to the April 2012 issue of the Social Sciences

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Upcoming Events

On the Origins of Gender Roles: Women and the Plough
April 2, 2012

Keepin' em Down on the Farm: Migration and Strategic Investment in Children's Schooling
April 3, 2012

Effects of Legalized Same-Sex Marriage on Family Formation
April 3, 2012

Yes Mr. President! Thinking in New Ways About Just War
April 5, 2012

Ethnography of Virtual Groups of Play
April 5, 2012

Analyzing the Structural Flows of Political Communication
April 6, 2012

The Future of Violence: What Is High Tech Doing to Violent Conflict?
April 6, 2012

Retinex-like Color Computations in Human Vision and Visual Cortex
April 6, 2012

Offshoring, Unemployment and Wages: The Role of Labor Market Institutions
April 9, 2012

Security Concerns and Policies in Today's Wider Europe
April 10, 2012

Ellipsis: Diagnosing Unpronounced Structures
April 11, 2012

Healthcare Futures: Policy, Promise and Politics
April 12, 2012

A Dream Deferred: Toward the U.S. Racial Future
April 13, 2012

Neuroscience and Ethics: How Do We Make Moral Decisions?
April 13, 2012

Actuality and Subjunctivity Workshop
April 13-14, 2012

The Hierarchical Bayesian Ornstein-Uhlenbeck Model - Adapting Formal Mathematical Models for Psychometric Applications
April 18, 2012

When Mommy goes to War: Race, Class and Sexuality in the All-Volunteer Military
April 20, 2012

Female Genital Mutilation in Sierra Leone: Secrecy, Sexuality, Solutions
April 26, 2012

Event Calendar

Social Sciences
in the Media

Social media is the new 'graffiti' for gang members

'White Hispanic' in crosshairs as conservative commentators challenge media's description of George Zimmerman

Good news: You are not your brain

After Kony 2012: Three ways NGOs can work with Africans as equals (op-ed)

Gen 1.5: Where an immigrant generation fits in

Want to add jobs? Subsidize employers - Fed paper

Don't overlook Mike Daisey's bigger point about Apple (op-ed)

Are bilingual Hispanic immigrants healthier? New study says two languages better than one

Coming out undocumented: How much of a political effect has the movement had?

UCI's Hoover shines

Early signs that Obamacare is on the right track to reduce costs

Debate rages over New York raising its minimum wage by $1.25 an hour

Dangerous ignorance: The hysteria of Kony 2012

Jeremy Lin: 'The great yellow hope' (op-ed)

Why Marco Rubio can't save the GOP

Pay workers more, feel economic pain

Debating the benefits, pitfalls of minimum-wage increase

Southern California diversity may be reaching its peak

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Career honors

UCI sociologist David A. Snow earns Distinguished Professor and Lauds & Laurels honors for outstanding career of research, teaching and service

In the early 1980s, city officials in Austin, Texas began to notice an increasing number of people living on the city's streets and hanging out on its jogging trails. Worried about what they called "an emerging social problem," officials contacted the University of Texas sociology department and found David Snow, who was then an associate professor studying social networks and movements.

Read on...

More distinguished honors for social sciences dean

Barbara Dosher, social sciences dean, is named Distinguished Professor of Cognitive Sciences

Barbara Dosher, social sciences dean, has been named Distinguished Professor of Cognitive Sciences. Considered UCI's highest campus-level distinction for faculty, the honor recognizes her 35-year academic career spent studying the distinct forms and processes of attention, memory and perceptual learning, a career which the National Academy of Sciences recognized last year with Barbara's induction as a fellow.

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UCI senior is named a Truman Scholar

Felipe Hernandez, music performance and political science major, is one of the select U.S. recipients of $30,000 award for public service

Felipe Hernandez, a senior majoring in music performance and political science at UC Irvine, was notified this week that he has been selected as a 2012 Truman Scholar. The prestigious award goes to students nationwide who are committed to making a difference in the world, and - true to the spirit of the award - Hernandez learned of the honor while working at the United Way during spring break. In addition to his duties at the charity, he has founded his own nonprofit organization, Mentors Empowering & Nurturing Through Education, that pairs low-income, first-generation minorities with college-student mentors who help them prepare for education beyond high school and stimulate civic engagement, analytical thinking and leadership development.

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Ethical humanitarianism

UCI receives Henry Luce Foundation grant for Lynch-led project on ethics behind charitable development and distribution in Africa

The University of California, Irvine has received a $40,000 grant from The Henry R. Luce Initiative on Religion and International Affairs for a project - headed by Cecelia Lynch, political science professor - that encourages dialogue between scholars and religious leaders on the issue of ethics in humanitarianism. Using The CIHA Blog (Critical Investigations into Humanitarianism in Africa) as a launching point, Lynch will bring together a network of international scholars and religious leaders to explore different perspectives on the way humanitarian aid in Africa is sought, delivered and perceived.

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Sending and receiving the right - or mostly right - signals

On-going study by LPS associate professor Simon Huttegger seeks to model imperfect communication

From the cell-to-cell signals our bodies require to function to bipartisan talks in Congress, communication is a critical component of daily life. UCI logic & philosophy of science associate professor Simon Huttegger studies these processes - known as signaling - through the lenses of theoretical models. "In current theoretical signaling models, only two outcomes are investigated: one with communication and one where communication doesn't work," he says. In real life, however, there is often a middle ground and it is here that has his interest. Currently, says Huttegger, there are no models to help explain these partially communicative outcomes, only the extremes. With a $275,000 grant from the National Science Foundation, he is working with evolutionary biologist Carl Bergstrom, University of Washington, and philosophy assistant professor Kevin Zollman, Carnegie Mellon University and UCI alumnus '07, to fill this gap.

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Inaugural Women of UCI award winners recognized

Three of four recipients come from social sciences

The UCI Cross Cultural Center and Gender Education Initiative recently recognized four UCI women for their commitment to equality, advocacy and justice for women and gender education. Those honored included Jeanett Castellanos (pictured), Social Sciences Academic Resource Center director, recipient of the UCI Faculty of the Year award; Shacole Hamlett, senior social science major, recipient of the Woman of Color of the Year award; Danielle (Djae) Borja, junior international studies major, recipient of the Student of the Year award; and Brittany Betancourt, recent UCI graduate (English) and current academic counselor for undecided/undeclared majors, recipient of the Staff of the Year award.

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Faust is UROP's March Mentor of the Month

Honor recognizes the sociology professor for her continued support of undergraduate research

Katherine Faust, sociology professor, is the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program March Mentor of the Month. The UCI social sciences doctoral alumnus ('85) specializes largely in research on social networks and using mathematical models for social network structure and process. Her mentees have consistently received the Department of Sociology Robin Williams prize for best undergraduate research paper of the year, and many have gone on to first-rate graduate programs in sociology, law and business. A majority of her mentees have presented their work at the annual UROP symposium and two have had their research selected for publication in program's journal. In 2011, she received the Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Fostering Undergraduate Research in the Social Sciences and was selected among all faculty award winners to receive the Special Recognition Award for her work mentoring undergraduate students.

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More accolades for Harvest of Loneliness

Documentary on Bracero Program by UCI emeritus and alumnus earns 2012 Rollins Award

Since its premiere at UC Irvine in May 2010, "The Harvest of Loneliness: The Bracero Program," has received positive reviews at film festivals and screenings worldwide, earning the Cinelatino Audience Choice Award for Best Documentary at the Los Angeles Latino Film Festival in 2010 and the Best Educational Film Award at the Amsterdam Film Festival in 2011. Its most recent accolade: the 2012 Peter C. Rollins Award for the Best Documentary Film in Popular and American Culture within the past three years, awarded by the Popular Culture Association/American Culture Association (PCA/ACA).

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Mobile money's impact in the developing world

Maurer is part of expert video panel

In a new video released by Mobile Money Live, Bill Maurer, anthropology professor and Institute for Money, Technology & Financial Inclusion director, is among a panel of mobile money experts who highlight key factors attracting consumers in the developing world to mobile money services. The interviews were conducted as part of the GSMA Mobile Money Summit held in 2011 in Singapore.

Check out video...

Fernandez delivers pre-concert lecture at UC Davis

Listen in via podcast

Raul Fernandez, Chicano Latino studies professor and chair, delivered the pre-concert lecture at the Robert and Margrit Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts, UC Davis on February 18 introducing the highly acclaimed Chucho Valdes and the Afro-Cuban Messengers, a Latin Jazz ensemble from Cuba. A 30-minute podcast of the lecture is available.

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Breaking down the brain's behavior

New textbook by cognitive sciences researcher Nicole Gage helps undergrads understand cognitive neuroscience

For Nicole Gage, cognitive neuroscience is a heady topic. The cognitive sciences associate researcher has been studying the brain's neural framework since the late 90s. In 2007, she coauthored with Bernard J. Baars, Neurosciences Institute, a widely used advanced textbook on the topic. The pair has now followed up with a beginner's guide to cognitive neuroscience. Fundamentals of Cognitive Neuroscience, published in January by Elsevier, is written for use in undergraduate courses and for those generally interested in understanding the brain's role in sight, sound, consciousness, learning/memory, problem solving, speech, executive control, emotions, socialization and development.

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In memoriam: Nationally renowned UCI economist Julius Margolis dies at 91

Professor was instrumental in building economics and faculty housing programs

Julius Margolis, professor emeritus of economics at UC Irvine, died Friday, March 16, of kidney failure. The retired economist was 91. Alternately known as Julie, Julius or Jules, depending on the era, Margolis is described by colleagues as a founding figure in economics, a person of boundless energy and a Renaissance man. He was recruited by UCI in 1976 to strengthen the scholarly prominence of social sciences on the young campus by attracting top economists.

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Jeremy Lin: "The great yellow hope" (op-ed)

An op-ed by Claire Kim, political science and Asian American studies professor, as featured by WBEZ 91.5 March 8, 2012

"Linsanity" makes me uncomfortable. As someone who teaches Asian-American Studies classes, I get what the craze is about. Lin is offering in the space of a few smoking months to redeem that which has always been denied to Asian-American males in the white imagination - their athleticism, their masculinity, dare I say their full humanity. For all those who have suffered being seen as nerdy, physically weak, passive, feminine, even poorly endowed - in a word, unmanly - Jeremy is a savior. Suddenly, young Asian-Americans, especially young males, have someone to cheer for, someone whose triumphs they experience as their own.

Read on...

Don't overlook Mike Daisey's bigger point about Apple (op-ed)

An op-ed coauthored by Yang Su, sociology associate professor, as featured by CNN March 19, 2012

It is unfortunate that Mike Daisey lied about Apple's labor practices on "This American Life" by fabricating some harrowing details about the suffering of workers in China who make iPads and iPhones. But this revelation should not divert attention away from the very real, pressing issue of labor abuses in China. The public radio episode that aired Daisey's falsified account helped set in motion a series of news reports and close scrutiny from the media, forcing Apple to acknowledge that conditions in its supplier factories can be improved and that workers should be treated better. Now, because of Daisey's lies, some people might dismiss the problem of China's labor abuses. They should not. Daisey should not have lied, even if he were doing it to serve a bigger purpose. Daisey's bigger point - that workers in China are mistreated - is true.

Read on...

After Kony 2012: Three ways NGOs can work with Africans as equals (op-ed)

Op-ed by Cecelia Lynch, political science professor and international studies director, as featured in the Christian Science Monitor March 23, 2012

It's hard to know whether to be dismayed by all the attention given to the Kony 2012 campaign and YouTube video, or pleased that some of the issues that I and others have worked on for years are finally coming to light. Humanitarianism in Africa gets oversimplified in myriad ways, in the process making Africans themselves one-dimensional and raising up the white (most frequently, although not always) Westerner as savior. For real progress, Americans need to be committed to a deeper understanding of the causes of poverty both in the US and abroad. Donors and NGOs need an approach that acknowledges the humanity and agency of everyone. And they need creative ways to break through conventional wisdom about "development" to promote justice and equality. In the wake of Kony 2012, here are three points of advice for how nongovernmental organizations, and the donors who push them, can work with African citizens as equals.

Read on...

UCI launches gang intervention training program

Inaugural class started March 23

The UCI Center for Citizen Peacebuilding, in partnership with the Orange County Department of Education (OCDE), has launched a gang intervention training program for students, academics and practitioners who work - or plan to work - with at-risk youth. Funded wholly by OCDE, the 15-week program will run three times a year at UCI and cover topics such as stages in the developmental process as it affects socialization and violence tendencies; violence as a learned behavior; the role of street gangs, prevention and intervention techniques; organizing the community against violence; the role of truces and peace treaties; and advocating for policies that support anti-violence.

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OTI sends its first contingent to Armenia and Turkey

Bon voyage party held in March prior to group's departure

The mission of UCI's Olive Tree Initiative is rooted in a desire to impact open dialogue and understanding about conflicted regions. In March, the group sent its first delegation to Armenia and Turkey where they met with politicians, religious leaders, nongovernmental leaders and academics to gain a better understanding of tensions between the two nations. The trip marks a new branch of study and experiential learning opportunity for the student-initiated group that got its start in 2007 with a focus on the Israel-Palestine conflict. Attending the spring trip were eight UCI students - three of whom are of Armenian background, three from Turkish backgrounds, and 2 who are unaffiliated - along with three UCI faculty and two board members of the Center for Citizen Peacebuilding, the latter of which has played an important advisory role in the initiative's success. A series of dialogue-focused events are being planned so that they may share their experiences with on- and off-campus communities.

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Social sciences faculty, students and alumni take part in TEDxUCIrvine

Held March 3 at UCI

Social sciences students, alumni and faculty were among the 18-member speaker line-up for UC Irvine's inaugural TedX event held March 3, 1:00-7:00 p.m. in the Claire Trevor Theatre. Logan Frick, political science and art history alumnus and creator of the Good Evening UCI news-variety show; Sam Shaw, international studies undergraduate and founder of the 2010 UCI world record dodgeball game; Sasha Strauss, political science alumnus and managing director of the brand strategy consulting firm Innovation Protocol; and Michael J. Montoya, anthropology & Chicano/Latino studies associate professor and director of the Community Knowledge Project, discussed how their work is altering the ever-changing social and technological landscape. Social sciences undergraduates Adam Folker, business economics, and Kamrin Klauschie, international studies, were among the event organizers.

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UCI's public policy master's program welcomes first class

Keynote featured Los Angeles World Airports deputy executive director for law enforcement and homeland security

UCI's new master's program in public policy hosted a reception for its inaugural class Wednesday, Feb. 29, at the University Club. Michael Gottfredson, executive vice chancellor and provost, introduced keynote speaker Arif Alikhan. A 1990 social ecology graduate, Alikhan is deputy executive director for law enforcement and homeland security at Los Angeles World Airports, which includes LAX and the Ontario and Van Nuys airports. He discussed his experience working at the Department of Justice and the Department of Homeland Security, talked about how policy analysis can address 21st century security challenges, and offered practical advice to the 22-member class. The program - the first new public policy master's program in Southern California in decades - draws on faculty and research from both the School of Social Ecology and the School of Social Sciences.

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Putting the "extra" in "extracurricular"

Student-drafted "bucket list" focuses on the lighter side of UCI

Want to maximize your UCI experience? Here's a list of 50 things to do during your undergraduate years, according to older (and presumably wiser) upperclassmen. They came up with the roster in honor of the university's 50th anniversary in 2015 - when current freshmen will graduate. "The idea is to make the most of your experience at UCI," says Associated Students Vice President Jun Wang, a fourth-year international studies major who helped circulate the proposed list among ASUCI students.

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UCI Spirit Squad brings smiles to CHOC patients

Check out video, courtesy of the Big West Conference

Members of the UC Irvine Spirit Squad spent the morning of March 9, 2012 visiting the Children's Hospital of Orange Count. They delivered gifts from all Big West cheer & dance squads to patients and spent time with some of the patients and families. Check out video from their visit, courtesy of YouTube and the Big West Conference. Featured UCI Spirit Squad members include Brooke Leinen, junior, anthropology; Amanda Rolle, junior, sociology; and April Shishido, senior, biological sciences.

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Costa Mesa supplies queen to Fountain Valley

Andrea Licata, economics undergraduate, is the new Miss Fountain Valley. The following ran in the Orange County Register and Fountain Valley Patch March 11, 2012:

A new Miss Fountain Valley was crowned for the first time in almost 20 years Saturday night at the Saigon Performing Arts Center in Fountain Valley. Andrea Licata, an 18-year-old economics major at UC Irvine, was awarded a total of $5,500 in scholarships in being named Miss Fountain Valley 2012 and winning the talent competition for her piano performance of "Enchanted Waterfall" by Martha Miers. Licata's platform, or charitable cause in the pageant's parlance, is creating awareness for the importance of early breast-cancer detection.

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Attention Undergrads: Be a UC Irvine honor banner carrier at commencement

Open to students not graduating in 2012

Honor banner carriers play a prestigious role in commencement ceremonies by leading the platform party and graduates down the aisles and directing them on and off of the stage. Honor banner carriers are selected from current UCI students who are not graduating in 2012. Spaces are limited and are filled on a first-come, first-served basis. For those who volunteer and are selected, you will receive preferential seating for the guests attending your ceremony when you graduate.

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SPOTLIGHT EVENT: Healthcare Futures: Policy, Promise and Politics

April 12, 7:00-8:30 p.m., SBSG 1517

The healthcare debate is currently center stage. While the cost of care rises, the problem of who pays for it looms over almost every major public policy and business decision. What are the real issues behind the headlines? In the final event of the 2011-12 Social Sciences Expert Speaker Series, social sciences and health industry experts will discuss the current state and possible future of healthcare in the United States.

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School of Social Sciences
University of California, Irvine
Irvine, CA 92697-5100