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Sanford Pilots Local Government Innovation Program

The timing could not have been better. On September 15, President Obama issued an executive order: use behavioral science insights to better serve the American people. Two days later, 70 mayors, city managers and others from 30 local governments in North Carolina gathered at a Sanford School workshop to learn about that very thing. What is behavioral science, and how can it be used to spur innovation at the local level?


Sanford Students Develop 50-State Food Aid Database

The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, or SNAP, is the largest and most costly food assistance program in the country. The intricate web of state-by-state policies and procedures that govern the program pose challenges for researchers and policymakers seeking to better understand it and suggest reforms. Now, a team of Sanford students has developed a database compiling SNAP and WIC benefit policies from all 50 states.


China Expert to Speak on Democracy vs. Meritocracy

China expert and author Daniel A. Bell will argue the benefits of the Chinese-style political meritocracy in a panel discussion Monday, Oct. 19, at Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy. The event takes place at 5 p.m. in lecture hall 04 and is free and open to the public.


‘Hyphenated American’ Exhibit And Panel Discussion On Immigrant Identity Oct. 1

Photographer and Duke alumna Angela Zhang ’15 will lead a panel discussion about her exhibition “The Hyphenated American” on October 1. Zhang created the exhibit featuring Duke students who are recent immigrants or who grew up in immigrant families as a project for her self-designed major in mass media and cross-cultural perception.


News Tip: China Cap-and-Trade Program Removes Justification for U.S. Inaction

China is expected to announce the details of a cap-and-trade program which will limit and put a price on greenhouse gas emissions, as part of measures aimed to address climate change. “China is the world’s largest emitter of greenhouse gases, accounting for 30 percent of emissions. Anything done to ensure that the reduction targets announced earlier this year are met would be atmospherically significant. Legitimate action by China on climate change also removes a major justification for political inaction by the United States," says Tim Profeta.


Congratulations! #PolicyInAction Winners

Thank you to all who submitted photographs to Sanford's annual #PolicyInAction contest. This year we had close to 70 submissions from undergraduates, graduate students, and alumni. The goal of the contest is to see what policy looks like to you. There are five winners.


'No Child Left Behind' Leaves Some Voters Behind

When public schools receive failing grades, turnout increases in local school board elections, according to research from Duke University’s Sanford School of Public Policy. However, turnout increases unequally, with very different results among the rich and the poor.


Summer Internship Series: Roberson Goes on the Radio

Imagine having to call, email and tweet strangers in Norway in an attempt to schedule an interview for a story on an urgent deadline. It is a Friday afternoon, and when you finally reach one woman, she tells you that she is in a cab headed to a party, promptly hanging up. You have nothing. Journalism can be tough, but for Susannah Roberson PPS’16, it created a rewarding summer internship experience.


Saved for a Purpose: A Life of Leadership and Service

 In “Saved for a Purpose: A Journey from Private Virtues to Public Values” James Joseph  recounts the moral and ethical considerations of a life lived at the vanguard of some of the most important human and civil rights movements of the 20th century. In addition to being his life story, the book is a reflection on the characteristics of transformational leadership. His moral compass sometimes steered him into great risk.


Criminals Typically Acquire Guns Through Social Connections, Studies Find (Prof. Philip J. Cook)

Criminals are far more likely to acquire guns from family and acquaintances than by theft, according to new studies by researchers at Duke University and the University of Chicago.


Alumnus Profile: Michael Conway PPS’88 Leads Starbucks to New Places

You would figure there would be a lot of coffee if you were to walk into the Starbucks corporate headquarters in Seattle, but finding four to five break rooms on every floor, each one equipped with coffee brewers, coffee grinders, espresso machines and the milks and syrups the company is known for—that might be unexpected.


3 Questions For ISIS expert Jessica Stern

The Washington Post declared Jessica Stern's most recent book, ISIS, The State of Terror "should be required reading for every politician and policymaker." Stern spoke to Duke University students and the public in a talk September 10. Prior to the event, Stern talked with David Schanzer, director of the Triangle Center on Terrorism and Homeland Security, one of the event sponsors.