Robin Marsh, ISSI Senior Researcher, Discusses the African Alumni Project in The Berkeleyan

The African Alumni Project is a two-year study that aims to chronicle the life and career trajectories of sub-Saharan African scholars who have earned degrees at six universities in the U.S., Canada and Central America. Robin Marsh, ISSI Senior Researcher, is UC Berkeley’s lead researcher for the project and has made two trips to Africa to meet with Berkeley alums. Read more about her work and the project here.

ISSI Conference on Youth, Jobs and the Future: Responses to Youth Unemployment - Video now available

Youth joblessness, and the future prospects of young people, is a major public issue that has received little attention in the United States. Youth, Jobs and the Future: Responses to Youth Unemployment convened at the Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College in New York City on October 22 and 23 to share new analyses with a solutions-oriented approach. Discussion began Thursday evening with a keynote by Robert Kuttner of Brandeis University and The American Prospect, and continued all day Friday with a diverse group of speakers, providing an overview of the youth unemployment problem, policy recommendations and solutions going forward. The conference, which was sponsored by ISSI, Roosevelt House Public Policy Institute at Hunter College, and Hunter College's Sociology Department, is now available for viewing here.

Adult Immigrants Learning English in the United States

In this radio program on adult English as a Second Language students, Patricia Baquedano-López, CLPR Chair and Associate Professor of Education, talks about immigrant parents who face barriers to participating in their children's school because they do not speak English.

Roy Eric Xavier, ISSI Visiting Scholar, Receives First Fulbright Award to Macau

Roy Eric Xavier, Director of the Portuguese and Macanese Studies Project and Visiting Scholar at ISSI, has been selected for a Fulbright Specialists project in Macau, China, at the University of Macau during November 2015. Dr. Xavier is the first U.S. scholar to be awarded a grant to Macau in the 69-year history of the program. He will help develop a course and curriculum on Macau’s multi-cultural history and its 500 year connection to expatriate Macanese now living in 35 countries around the world. The course will be based on research he conducted over the last four years that led to strategies to diversify Macau’s economy in the 21st century. Learn more about Dr. Xavier's work here

Nahuatl Culture and Language Course on Noticias Univisión 14

In September, UC Berkeley student group Danza In Xochitl In Cuicatl and the community based groups Panquetzaliztli and Nahui-Ehecatl, in collaboration with ISSI's Joseph A. Myers Center for Research on Native American Issues, invited students and community members to participate in the Program for the Study and Practice of Indigenous Cultures and Languages. This 6-week program consists of intensive Nahuatl language classes and cultural exchanges taught by instructors Catalina Cruz de la Cruz and Ofelia Cruz Morales and organized by Juan Francisco Esteva Martínez, Director of the Ronald E. McNair Scholars Program at UC Berkeley. We are happy to share that the Program was recently featured on Noticias Univisión 14. Please find the video here.

“Inequality Grows With Age and Shapes Later Years” in the New York Times

Corey Abramson, Assistant Professor of Sociology at University of Arizona and former CRSC Graduate Fellow, is quoted in a New York Times article entitled "Income Inequality Grows With Age and Shapes Later Years." In his ethnographic study of seniors in the Bay Area, he found that seniors commonly struggle with health, mobility, and thinning social networks. Abramson argues that they face these challenges on an uneven playing field. He says, “The inequality that shapes our lives from birth onward doesn’t end with the first Social Security check."

Please see Abramson's recently published book, The End Game: How Inequality Shapes Our Final Years, to learn more about this work. 

Welfare Spending, Inequality, and Fairness in the Boston Review

In an op-ed entitled “Just Deserts” in the Boston Review, Claude Fischer, Professor of Sociology and member of ISSI's Advisory Board, discusses why Americans are reluctant to support government policy that would help people living in poverty, even as income inequality grows. Fischer cites a study in which Americans, compared to Danes, are much more likely to believe in a fair world, and thus believe that those living in poverty must be “deserving” of it. Read more here

CRSC Welcomes Chris Zepeda-Millán as New Faculty Chair

ISSI's Center for Research on Social Change welcomes Chris Zepeda-Millán, Assistant Professor of Ethnic Studies, who has agreed to serve as CRSC’s new faculty chair. Professor Zepeda-Millán's work on social movements, and particularly immigrant rights activism, fits squarely within the mission of CRSC and also brings expertise in the area of changing demographics of the US. We give our heartfelt thanks to our outgoing chair, David Montejano, Professor of Ethnic Studies and History, who is retiring in December. Fortunately, he will still be in residence at ISSI and continue to be part of our community.

ISSI Spring/Summer 2015 e-News

In the first issue of ISSI e-News we share highlights of our programs and events from the spring and summer. Meet the new 2015 Graduate Fellows, and hear from Dr. Elena Portacolone, Assistant Adjunct Professor at UCSF's Institute for Health and Aging and an ISSI Visiting Scholar, as she discusses her lateset research, "A Tale of Two Cities: The Exploration of the Trieste Public Psychiatry Model in San Francisco." Please see our newsletter here, and if in the future you would like to receive it right in your inbox, subscribe to our mailing list here.  

CLPR Releases New Policy Brief on Latino Men in Higher Education

ISSI's Center for Latino Policy Research has released a new policy brief on "Fostering Academic Success among Latino Men in Higher Education." Read the full report here

Unaccompanied Migrant Children

Since 2014, there has been a large increase in the numbers of unaccompanied migrant children from Central America entering the U.S. across the U.S. Mexico border. While these children have been at the center of a media firestorm, little is known about their health, mental health, and educational needs, and how U.S. communities are responding to those needs. This research project was a collaboration of three ISSI centers: Center for Research on Social Change, Berkeley Center for Social Medicine, and Center for Latino Policy Research. The project investigated the national, state, and Bay Area contexts to identify how many children are in detention, how many children have been released to family members and other sponsors, and the general patterns of their needs, as well as Bay Area community responses. The results are available in a Fact Sheet, as a downloadable pdf in both English and Spanish, as well as a web version in both English and Spanish.

Can Philanthropy Reduce Inequality?

In this blog post, Erica Kohl-Arenas, former Center for Research on Social Change Graduate Fellow and current Assistant Professor of Nonprofit Management at the New School, reflects on the Ford Foundation's commitment to use its resources to reduce inequality. Her new book, The Self-Help Myth: How Philanthropy Fails to Alleviate Poverty, will be published by UC Press in December.


Why "Sending in the Moms" Is Not the Answer

After African American mother Toya Graham was filmed dragging her son away from a Black Lives Matter protest, many applauded her actions. In this blog post, Dawn Dow, former Center for Research on Social Change Graduate Fellow and current Assistant Professor of Sociology at Syracuse University, argues against "the charge to 'Send in the Moms' to tame the legitimate anger of their children about the continuous disgraceful and discriminatory treatment they confront from institutions and individuals within the broader American society."

Kelly Ray Knight's addicted.pregnant.poor is Published

addicted.pregnant.poor by Kelly Ray Knight, ISSI’s Berkeley Center for Social Medicine Faculty Affiliate, has been published (Duke University Press, 2015). An ethnography based on four years of fieldwork in San Francisco's Mission district, Knight documents the lives of addicted, pregnant, and poor women living in daily-rent hotels, including their battles against drug cravings, housing debt, and potential violence. Learn more here



Sharon Kaufman's Ordinary Medicine is Published

Ordinary Medicine: Extraordinary Treatments, Longer Lives, and Where to Draw the Line by Sharon Kaufman, ISSI's Berkeley Center for Social Medicine Faculty Affiliate, has been published (Duke University Press, 2015). Kaufman investigates the “more is better” approach to medicine: a nearly invisible chain of social, economic, and bureaucratic forces that has made once-extraordinary treatments seem ordinary, necessary, and desirable. Learn more here