Upcoming Events

Political Science Department Founders' Celebration

Date: November 19, 2010
Time: 5:30 PM to 8:00 PM
Location at: Great Hall
9500 Gilman Drive
La Jolla, CA 92037

The Department of Political Science will celebrate its founding fathers, as well as honor its supporters, partners and university community members who have helped to shape the university's history and who will continue to shape the future. The department will reflect and celebrate - through speakers and displays -- the historic events and people that marked the department and the university's growth.

Featured speakers include Professors Emeriti Sandy Lakoff & Arend Lijphart, Distinguished Professor Sam Popkin, Professor Gary Jacobson and current Chair, Professor Clark Gibson.




A MacArthur for Padden- Carol Padden — professor of Communication, associate dean of Social Sciences and an alumna of Linguistics — has won a "genius grant" from the MacArthur Foundation for her work on sign languages. The prestigious award comes with $500,000, no strings attached.
UCSD@50 Features CCWB- The Center for Community Wellbeing, a university-community collaborative project that involves numerous faculty and students from the Social Sciences, leads a yearlong, 50th-anniversary series from UCSD-TV; segment available online now.
The Friendly Way to Catch the Flu- The "friendship paradox," a basic feature of social networks, may help public health officials to detect epidemics earlier and respond sooner, according to research coauthored by James Fowler of Political Science.
New Docs Linked to Death Spike in July- Study by David Phillips of Sociology suggests inexperienced medical staff make fatal medication errors.
California in Crisis- UCSD Social Sciences professors Marisa Abrajano, Thad Kousser, Isaac Martin and Bud Mehan discussed the California budget crisis, its effect on the state and possible solutions for recovery on May 25, 2010, at the Natural History Museum in Balboa Park. The discussion was moderated by Dean Jeff Elman and will be broadcast at a later date by UCSDTV. Click here for more information. To view the state governance rerform website mentioned at the talk by Prof. Thad Kousser, click here.
Faculty Excellence- Keith Rayner of Psychology has won a Chancellor.s Associates Faculty Excellence Award in the humanities and social sciences research category. To view a video about Rayner.s research, go here.
California's Education Crisis- The California budget and several other factors have combined to put the Golden State.s once-shining public education system into one of its deepest crises. Division faculty are responding with an innovative, team-taught course, offered through Ethnic Studies and open to the public.
Caught Up in the 'Rug Rat Race'- College-educated mothers in the United States have dramatically increased the time they spend on childcare, especially on "chauffeuring" to organized activities — in the hopes of getting their kids into elite colleges, say Garey and Valerie Ramey of Economics.
One Good Deed Begets Another and Another and Another...- Cooperation cascades through a social network, according to the first experimental findings on the contagion of cooperative behavior, by James Fowler of Political Science.
You'll Shun the New If You're Feeling Blue- A negative mood imparts a warm glow to the familiar, while happiness makes novelty attractive, according to work by Piotr Winkielman of Psychology.
School Improvement Study Funded- Alan J. Daly of Education Studies has won a William T. Grant Foundation grant for a study of how schools use research evidence in the service of school improvement.
Calling on Colbert- James Fowler of Political Science appeared on The Colbert Report to discuss his book Connected: The Surprising Power of Social Networks and How They Shape Our Lives.
Watching the Border- CCIS Director Emeritus Wayne Cornelius was featured in a 60 Minutes story on the "virtual fence" at the U.S-Mexico border.
Book Award- Globalizing L.A. by Urban Studies Director Steve Erie has won a book award from the honorary land economics society.
The Measure of Woman?- Psychology researchers discover new "golden ratios" for female facial beauty.
Stimulus Grant- Nearly $9 million from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act will help Terry Jernigan, of Cognitive Science and the Center for Human Development, and colleagues search for links between genetic variation and developing brains.
Houston to Head ERC- Alan Houston, of Political Science, has been named provost of UCSD's Eleanor Roosevelt College.
Chichen Itza in 3-D- Anthropology Department faculty and a graduate student are using a free Google download to model the ancient Maya city.
Lies My Parents Told Me- Parents say that honesty is the best policy, but they regularly lie to their children to influence their behavior and emotions, according to Gail Heyman of Psychology.
'Apples-to-Apples' Analysis of Arab Development Yields Fresh View- The Arab world is not the socioeconomic basket case that conventional wisdom holds, says James Rauch of Economics.
Believing Is Seeing- Psychology professor Piotr Winkielman and colleagues in New Zealand and France show that our initial interpretations of other people.s ambiguous facial expressions bias subsequent memory and perception.
HUD Highlight- The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development recognized the innovative efforts of social sciences students, Communication Professor Mike Cole and many others at an affordable housing project in southeast San Diego in a national webcast.
Obituary: Nobel Prize Winner Granger- One of the globe's leading economists, Nobel Prize-winning econometrician Clive Granger died May 27.
Key to Perfect Pitch- A rare musical skill is more common among fluent speakers of such tonal languages as Mandarin and Vietnamese, says Diana Deutsch of Psychology.
Humboldt Honor- Psychology professor Keith Rayner has been selected as a recipient of the prestigious international Humboldt Research Award.
Franklin Find- Alan Houston of Political Science has discovered a trove of letters by, to and about Benjamin Franklin. The correspondence, copied by one Thomas Birch, was "hiding" in the British Library amid Birch's voluminous papers.
Grades Trump Admission Tests- Richard Atkinson, UC president emeritus and emeritus professor of psychology, argues that the SATs are still poor predictors of college readiness.
Hail Fellow- Hugh "Bud" Mehan is an inaugural American Educational Research Association Fellow.
And the Faught Goes to...- Shelley Marquez of the CRL, INC and KIBM has been named the recipient of an award recognizing "excellence and outstanding achievement in the management of general campus academic units."
Bright Ideas- The San Diego Union-Tribune reports on the research of 54 Urban Studies and Planning students.
Faculty Excellence- Yen Espiritu of Ethnic Studies and Gerry Mackie of Political Science are honored with 2009 Chancellor's Associates Faculty Excellence Awards.
Choreography and Cognition- Innovative dance company benefits from interdisciplinary study with Cognitive Science.
Economic Stimulus- Economist Valerie Ramey shows spending more valuable than tax cuts to stimulating the economy.
The Genes in Your Congeniality- Researchers identify genetic influence in social networks.
Gates Funds Education Research- Amanda Datnow of Education Studies will co-direct a five-year study, funded by the Gates Foundation, aimed at discovering how to improve access to college and the job market for low-income youth.
Spreading the Joy Around- James Fowler of Political Science and a Harvard colleague document the contagious power of happiness in social networks.
The Smart Way to Study- Psychology professors Hal Pashler and John Wixted report on how to improve long-term learning.
Engle Chair in Econometrics- Honoring Professor Emeritus and 2003 Nobel Laureate Robert Engle, the university has created the first named endowed chair in economics.
King Solomon's (Copper) Mines?- Did the Bible's King David and his son Solomon control the copper industry in present-day southern Jordan? Though that remains an open question, the possibility is raised once again by the recently published research of archaeologist Tom Levy.
Computer and Social Scientists- Mathew McCubbins, of Political Science, is founder of a popular Calit2 lecture series that aims to bridge the gap between computer and social scientists. Next to speak is James Fowler.
UCSD Political Scientists on Election '08- Beginning Oct. 20 and up through Election Day, UCSD-TV will be airing discussions by faculty, in two different programs, about issues in the presidential race. Click here and here for schedules.
Nation's Financial Crisis- Experts from the division and the Rady School assessed the U.S. economy and the nation.s current financial crisis in a special presentation on Oct. 3. If you weren.t among the 600 who attended, you can read what they had to say or watch an online video.
UC San Diego has one of the nation's most highly regarded departments of political science- The faculty includes top experts in the field including many scholars who study elections and politics. Click here for a list of faculty authorities on the 2008 elections.
Unconvinced by Economic Growth? Blame the Deflator- Economic growth doubled in the second quarter, but in case it doesn't feel like the economy is expanding robustly, blame the deflator.
The Challenges Facing Mainland China- As the futurologists ply their discredited trade and write books on a resurgent communist China, there have remained some skeptics who have interesting and pointed remarks to make on the emperor's new attire. Susan Shirk, a UCSD political scientist, is one of them and her book "China: Fragile Superpower" is a welcome corrective to much nonsense.
Alcohol Fuels Spike in Deaths- The number of Americans who died at home after ingesting toxic combinations of prescription medications, alcohol and street drugs such as marijuana exploded by more than 3,000 percent during the past two decades, as shown by new research led by a David P. Phillips, professor of Sociology at UCSD.
East Does Not Meet West on China's Self-Image- Chinese people are overwhelmingly satisfied with the direction of their country, a Pew Centre survey published yesterday shows.
Another Peek Inside the Brain of the Electorate- How much has the American voter changed over the past 50 years? According to a group of academics who has spent a year studying this very question, the voter is pretty much the same dismally ill-informed creature he was back then.
Fire Plan Dividing Jacob, Roberts- A plan to radically change how wildfires are fought in San Diego County has pitted one supervisor against the other.
Two of Seven- Two social scientists, Roger Gordon of Economics and Thomas Levy of Anthropology, are among seven faculty members from UCSD to be named fellows of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences.
Tops in Teaching- Professor Emeritus David Jordan, Anthropology, has been named a top recipient in the UCSD Alumni Association’s 30th Annual Awards for Excellence, to be held June 7.
Chimps Dig Up Clues to Human Past- Our closest living relatives use tools to forage for underground food in Tanzania, finds research coauthored by anthropologist Jim Moore, suggesting what our ancestors might have done as well.
New Chief Academic Officer- Paul Drake, dean of the Division of Social Sciences for the past 12 years and a member of the UC San Diego faculty since 1984, has been appointed the university's Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs.


Failure of Telecom Reform in South Africa- Research by Robert Horwitz, of Communication, says that promised liberalization by the African National Congress government was sacrificed to privatization of the national telephone monopoly.
Obesity Is ‘Socially Contagious’- Are your friends making you fat? Or keeping you slender? According to research coauthored by James Fowler of Political Science, the short answer on both counts is “yes.” The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, has gained national and international attention.
Journey to the Copper Age- Featuring the research of UCSD archeologist Thomas Levy, San Diego's Museum of Man traces the evolution of human society in the Middle East after the birth of metal technology.
Family History of Autism and Social Behavior- The baby brothers and sisters of autistic children do not seek emotional cues from adults as often as other toddlers do, study finds.


Level-Headed- An experiment finds that people have a taste for equality, which motivates them to spend their own money to make the poor less poor and the rich less rich.
Stop Signs- The ability to stop quickly may depend on a few “cables” that are part of the brain’s “braking” mechanism.



Through Deaf Eyes- Two UCSD authors, Tom Humphries and Carol Padden, appear in a national PBS documentary on Deaf history and culture.
Faculty Excellence- Psychology professor Sandra Brown was recognized recently with a Chancellor's Associates Faculty Excellence award for her work on adolescent substance abuse.
Groups and Grumps: Study Identifies ‘Sociality’ Neurons- A UC San Diego study has for the first time identified brain cells that influence whether birds of a feather will, or will not, flock together.




Beauty and the Brain- The phrase “easy on the eyes” may hit closer to the mark than we suspected.
UCSD Cognitive Scientist Wins $100k Rumelhart Prize- Psycholinguistics and artificial neural networks pioneer Jeff Elman has been named the seventh recipient of the David E. Rumelhart Prize.




$2.2 Million for Latin American Studies- The U.S. Department of Education has awarded a $2.2 million research grant to UCSD’s Center for Iberian and Latin American Studies and its counterpart at SDSU.
Backs to the Future: Aymara Language and Gesture Point to Mirror-Image View of Time- Tell an old Aymara speaker to “face the past!” and you just might get a blank stare in return — because he or she already does.

Sectarianism Is Problem for Religious Right Political Partnerships- Members of groups that comprise the “religious right” exhibit negative attitudes toward other religious groups on the right, making the building of political coalitions more difficult, according to first national survey of “sectarianism.”
UCSD Receives Largest Social Sciences Gift from an Alumnus- Jerri-Ann and Gary E. Jacobs (’79) have made a $1 million gift to the Division of Social Sciences in support of graduate fellowships.
Drawing on Tribal History- Ethnic Studies professor Ross Frank has created a virtual, public collection of rare and precious Plains Indian ledger art.


Policy Defaults Are Seen as Recommendations on Important Issues- New research indicates that people perceive the default option as a recommendation by policymakers and that this helps explain why few people request a change in their organ-donation status or retirement plan participation.
David Swinney, 59- Psychology professor David Swinney has died; a fellowship established in his name will support doctoral students in cognitive psychology.
The Birds and the B’s: Challenging Chomsky, Starlings Learn ‘Human-Only’ Syntax Patterns- The European starling — long known as a virtuoso songbird and as an expert mimic too — may also soon gain a reputation as something of a “grammar-marm.”



American Academy of Arts and Sciences Elects Fellows- Six scholars from UCSD, including two from political science, have been named fellows of the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Sciences.
Kavli Institute at UCSD Announces Innovative Research Awards- Investigations into the persistence of mistaken political beliefs, the surprising cognitive inflexibility of children and whether sleep requires a brain are among nine projects selected.
Q&A with Steve Erie on Water Politics- Director of the Urban Studies program and a professor of political science, Steve Erie discusses the issues raised in his new book Beyond Chinatown.
Pellow on California Cultures- David Pellow, of Ethnic Studies, discusses the interdisciplinary program he heads up, California Cultures in Comparative Perspective.