Feb. 1, 2001
Vol. 20 No. 9

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    In the News

    The Chronicle’s biweekly column In the News offers a digest of commentary and quotations by a few of the University faculty members, students and alumni who have been headlining the news in recent weeks. Chicago faculty members are some of the most frequently quoted experts; however, space does not allow the Chronicle to print all of the quoted material published or interviews broadcast by media outlets. To read many of the full newspaper articles mentioned in this column, visit the In the News column at the University News Office Web site at: http://www-news.uchicago.edu/.

    The research results of a study led by Edward Laumann, the George Herbert Mead Distinguished Service Professor in Sociology, and Robert Michael, Dean of the Irving B. Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies, and subsequently published in the newly released book Sex, Love, and Health in America: Private Choices and Public Policies, has been the subject of numerous media reports. The Associated Press Newswires and the Reuters English News Service carried stories about the book, which is a second installment of the 1992 National Health and Social Life Survey. The survey is a compilation of interviews of 1,921 women and 1,511 men and is regarded as the most comprehensive scientific study of American sexual behavior and attitudes. The Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune both published front-page stories about the book’s data Thursday, Jan. 25. Reports also ran on the NBC Nightly News, WMAQ-TV, Wisconsin Public Radio, WFLD-TV, CLTV, Associated Press Radio, Fox News, WLS-AM, WTTW-TV’s Chicago Tonight and ABC Radio Network’s Al Rantel Show.

    The University’s winter festival Kuviasungnerk–with its Polar Bear Run on the Main Quadrangles and its Salute to the Sun at Promontory Point on the lakeshore–was featured by local television stations WMAQ-TV, WBBM-TV and WLS-TV, which all covered the Polar Bear Run event on Thursday, Jan. 18. WMAQ-TV also reported on the Salute to the Sun event at Promontory Point on Friday, Jan. 19. The Chicago Sun-Times printed a photo from the Salute to the Sun event in its Sunday, Jan. 21 issue.

    University third-year Wayne Tsuang was the subject of a story about a flu study he has conducted in residence halls on campus. The story was published in the Friday, Jan. 26 issue of The Chronicle of Higher Education.

    Pradeep Chintagunta, the Robert Law Professor of Marketing in the Graduate School of Business, was the subject of a story published in The Economic Times on Sunday, Jan. 7. The story introduced research he is doing on forecasting the future success of unreleased films using a statistical model and it profiled his life, including his ties to the University. “Working here is terrific. Chicago is as close to intellectual utopia as you can get. I find it very challenging. I have colleagues who are super smart, and I consider it a privilege to be part of the group of faculty here. The students, M.B.A. and Ph.D., are also extremely bright and keep you on your toes.”

    Research conducted by Mark Duggan, Assistant Professor in Economics, which will be published in the Journal of Political Economy in a paper titled “More Guns, More Crime,” was the subject of an article that appeared in The Economist, Saturday, Jan. 13. The article described Duggan’s research methods, which included using state-and-county-level sales data from one of America’s largest gun magazines, government health statistics on gun-related deaths and the effect of concealed-weapons laws on gun ownership. Duggan found that a growth in gun ownership has resulted in significantly higher rates of burglary and larceny and no reduction in the rates of robbery, assault, rape and car theft.

    An essay written by Leon Kass, the Addie Clark Harding Professor in the Committee on Social Thought, which is titled “The Wisdom of Repugnance,” was quoted by syndicated columnist George Will in an editorial he wrote about human cloning and eugenics. Will’s column appeared in The Baltimore Sun and The Washington Post. “It is, Mr. Kass says, ‘moral myopia’ to think that all values must yield to the goals of better health and desirable traits. A cost of such yielding can be the reduction of man to the status of just another man-made thing,” wrote Will.

    Jeff Milyo, Assistant Professor in the Irving B. Harris Graduate School of Public Policy Studies, wrote an op-ed that appeared in the Friday, Jan. 26 Chicago Sun-Times. Milyo argued that campaign finance reformers are misguided. “Not only is the case for campaign reform overstated, but additional regulations may do more harm than good. Campaign spending is strongly associated with higher voter turnout. In addition, recent research indicates that soft money spending by state parties increases electoral competition for state legislative seats,” he wrote.

    An op-ed by Patricia Lee, Lecturer in the Law School, appeared in the Chicago Tribune Friday, Jan. 12. Lee wrote that the City of Chicago’s Department of Consumer Services should do away with a regulation that requires taxicab drivers to pick up passengers within 30 minutes of a call or face fines and possible loss of license. Lee argued that the consequences of such a rule could bring the same result a similar rule brought for a Domino’s Pizza delivery driver. Trying to meet a 30-minute delivery deadline, the pizza delivery driver caused an accident that seriously injured a woman.

    Stephan Meyer, Professor in Astronomy & Astrophysics and Physics, who is the University’s team leader on a project in Antarctica called TopHat, was quoted in a story that appeared in The Hindu. The TopHat project is observing the cosmic microwave background to determine size and mass of the universe.

    Aaron Burke, a Ph.D. candidate in the Oriental Institute and Near Eastern Languages & Civilizations, was interviewed about the course Archaeology and the Bible for a story published Tuesday, Jan. 16, in the Chicago Tribune. The course, which Burke teaches, has been sold out for weeks and attracts students with diverse interests. “You get people who are interested in the biblical aspects. Some are interested in Near Eastern history. Others simply want to expand their knowledge of archaeology.”

    A story about the University’s revival of the Faculty Revels appeared in the Chicago Tribune Thursday, Jan. 25, prior to its one-night-only performance on Saturday, Jan. 27. The Revels played to a sold-out house at the Quadrangle Club as its performers, made up of faculty members and friends of the club, presented 2001: A Space Oddity. (See photo and caption from the performance on Page 3.)