Aug. 16, 2001
Vol. 20 No. 20

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    In the News

    Michael Dietler, Associate Professor in Anthropology, described in a Monday, July 23 article in the Chicago Sun-Times the ancient shell art he and his colleagues found in southern France. Discovered at a site called Lattes, the shell art, which is 2000-years-old and of Celtic origin, was found on the floors of homes there. According to Dietler, these works of art help to explain how the Roman conquest affected Celts living in the south of France at that time. “We get a sense of the transformations in people’s lives” during the colonization by the Romans.

    Steven Levitt, Professor in Economics, wrote an op-ed that was published in the Saturday, July 28 issue of the Chicago Sun-Times. Levitt wrote about the danger swimming pools pose for children, writing that children are more likely to drown in swimming pools than be killed by guns or by faulty consumer products designed for children. “Potential lives saved from pool safety are far greater than from child-resistant packaging (an estimated 50 lives saved per year), keeping children away from airbags (fewer than five young children a year have been killed by air bags since their introduction), flame-retardant pajamas (perhaps 10 lives saved annually), or safety drawstrings on children’s clothing (two lives saved annually).

    Martha McClintock, the David Lee Shillinglaw Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology, and Suma Jacob (A.B., ’91, Ph.D., ’98), a University researcher, were quoted in both Chicago Tribune and Chicago Sun-Times articles about their recent research on odorless chemosignals. The research, which was published in the journal NeuroReport, indicates that these chemical signals influence brain activity that is responsible for emotions, attention, memories and sight.

    Leon Kass, the Addie Clark Harding Professor on the Committee on Social Thought and author of The Ethics of Human Cloning, wrote an op-ed that appeared in the Tuesday, July 31 Chicago Tribune. Kass wrote in favor of a ban on human embryo cloning that was introduced in the House of Representatives as the Weldon-Stupak bill and passed by the House Tuesday, July 31. Writing that “therapeutic cloning” is not the answer to fighting disease, Kass said, “Scientists want complete freedom to experiment at will. For the most part we gladly grant this freedom. Occasionally, however, they must accept the need for limits, when their doings threaten core human values—in this case, the taboo on designing human children.” Kass also discussed the ethical ramifications of cloning and other biomedical issues as a guest on the WGN Radio program Extension 720 on Monday, July 9. Kass also was quoted in the Tuesday, July 31 Christian Science Monitor.

    President Randel appeared in a Chicago Tribune photo with Chicago Mayor Richard Daley that was taken during a press conference Wednesday, Aug. 1, when Daley announced the city’s strategic plan to attract more venture capital and technology firms. Randel and Daley answered questions during the press conference, which followed a luncheon sponsored by the Mid-America Committee, a not-for-profit, Chicago-based organization for CEOs of multinational corporations. A story accompanied the Tribune photo that was published Thursday, Aug. 2, and a story on the forum also appeared in the Chicago Sun-Times. “The university produces research because it pursues knowledge wherever that knowledge happens to be. We are not ourselves primarily in the investment business. What we need to do is make the front door to this world of ideas a good deal easier to enter—where the investment community and the business community can come together with the kinds of idea producers we have at the university to produce a common outcome,” said Randel in the Sun-Times.

    Allen Sanderson, Senior Lecturer in Economics, discussed on the WBEZ Radio program Odyssey the implications of a report to reorganize college-level sports. Sanderson appeared as an Odyssey guest on Wednesday, July 11.

    The research of John Cacioppo, the Tiffany and Margaret Blake Distinguished Service Professor in Psychology, was the focus of an article published in the July/August issue of Psychology Today. A pioneer of social neuroscience, Cacioppo was interviewed about the field, which he describes as the study of the mind’s “dynamic interactions with biological systems of the body and the social world in which it resides.” Cacioppo added, “The human species is an incredibly social organism. As animals go, we’re not especially strong or fast, so we survive by being smart and forming groups. To understand the human brain, it helps to think about social contexts, behavior and implications—and vice versa.”

    As a guest of WBEZ Radio’s World View program on Friday, July 13, Susan Gzesh, Director of the Human Rights Program, discussed immigration issues and other topics related to a Chicago visit by Mexico’s President, Vicente Fox. Gzesh also appeared as a guest on WTTW’s Chicago Tonight program on Monday, July 16, with Friedrich Katz, Professor in History. Gzesh and Katz were members of a panel discussion on Fox’s Chicago visit, which included a dinner at the home of President Randel and his wife, Carol.

    Paul Sereno, Professor in Organismal Biology & Anatomy, was featured in a Tuesday, July 24 story published in the Chicago Sun-Times. The article reported on Sereno’s recent trip to Wyoming, where he unearthed a tyrannosaur fossil. The article explained how Sereno is hoping this fossil will provide evidence of the dinosaur’s skin. “It was not buried as a mummy like the others. But it was buried in such a way that we think the surface of the skin may be preserved for the first time in a large predator.”

    Randal Picker, the Paul and Theo Leffmann Professor of Commercial Law in the Law School, was interviewed about the reversal of the Microsoft decision on WBEZ’s Odyssey program on Monday, July 2. Picker also addressed the Microsoft case in an op-ed he wrote, which appeared in The Financial Times of London Tuesday, July 24. Picker wrote that Microsoft should be required to use the same distribution options as its competitors when it distributes additional software products for its Windows XP. Picker also was quoted in a Chicago Tribune business column published Friday, July 13.

    David Strauss, the Harry N. Wyatt Professor in the Law School, was interviewed on WBEZ’s Odyssey program Tuesday, July 3, to discuss recent trends in Supreme Court rulings.

    A story reporting on President Bush’s nomination of Randall Kroszner, Professor of Economics in the Graduate School of Business, to the White House Council of Economic Advisers was published in The Washington Post Thursday, July 26.

    The work of University Hospitals researchers—Jonathan Moss, Professor in Anesthesia & Critical Care; Chun-Su Yuan, Assistant Professor in Anesthesia & Critical Care; and Michael Ang-Lee, Senior Resident in Anesthesia & Critical Care—on the effects of herbal supplements used by patients who undergo surgeries, was published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Stories reporting on the research appeared in the Wednesday, July 11 Chicago Sun-Times; New York Times; Los Angeles Times; Chicago Tribune; and USA Today.

    John MacAloon, Associate Dean of the Division of Social Sciences and an historian of the Olympic Games and the International Olympic Committee that oversees them, was quoted in numerous newspaper stories that reported on the committee’s anticipated vote to name a host city for the 2008 Summer Games. MacAloon predicted that the committee was leaning toward choosing Beijing. In an Associated Press story that appeared in the Arizona Republic and the Charleston Gazette, MacAloon said: “More and more members I talk to understand that this could be the most important postwar contribution of the Olympic movement to the development of the world political system.” MacAloon also was quoted in The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, USA Today, and the Christian Science Monitor.