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Full-Text Articles in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Editor's Note, Padraig O'Malley Jul 2007

Editor's Note, Padraig O'Malley

New England Journal of Public Policy

This issue of the New England Journal of Public Policy that deals with issues of climate change, oil, and water and the interconnection of the three with the future of the planet.

Initially our topic was conceived as “Oil & Water” only. We planned to present the proceedings of an Institute for Global Leadership symposium held at Tufts University in 2005. There was then still a debate about global warming, although the Kyoto Treaty was in place. But without the world’s preeminent manufacturer of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the United States (20 percent of the total emissions with 5 percent ...


Oil. Seeking Peace In The Niger Delta: Oil, Natural Gas, And Other Vital Resources, Darren Kew, David L. Phillips Jul 2007

Oil. Seeking Peace In The Niger Delta: Oil, Natural Gas, And Other Vital Resources, Darren Kew, David L. Phillips

New England Journal of Public Policy

Nigeria’s oil-rich Niger Delta region has seen little benefit from the billions of dollars earned from oil over the last four decades, prompting a growing but disorganized insurgency across the region. Irresponsible oil companies and government officials have reduced the Niger Delta to one of the most polluted environments on earth. Corrupt local and national politicians, many of whom came to power through rigged elections, have colluded to manipulate ethnic divisions amid poverty to loot the region’s wealth. Consequently, the people of the Niger Delta have no formal political voice in Nigeria’s nascent democratic system, increasing the ...


Editor's Note, Padraig O'Malley Mar 2007

Editor's Note, Padraig O'Malley

New England Journal of Public Policy

In 1990, the New England Journal of Public Policy published a special issue on Women. The subject was women & economic empowerment. The authors found that while women had made significant gains during the 1970s and 1980s in many spheres relating to the workplace, true equity with respect to their male peers was still elusive, and gender bias, despite remedial legislation, continued to be the acceptable norm.

Seventeen years on, another group of women, under the direction of guest editor Sherry H. Penney, herself a contributor to the 1990 journal, looks anew at some of these issues and expands the horizons of their inquiry to other fields where women have struggled to get access. The authors find that despite many gains (female students outnumber men at the undergraduate level and in many graduate and professional areas), bias is still deeply embedded in our socio/economic/political ethos, despite there being some very visible "firsts" - first Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi; and first female president of Harvard, Drew Gilpin Faust; and first female Democratic Party frontrunner for president, Hillary Clinton - there are still barriers that need to be razed, and old problems of inequality, whether questions of equal payor access to tenure, that need to be addressed.


The Face Of Corporate Leadership: Finally Poised For Major Change?, Toni G. Wolfman Mar 2007

The Face Of Corporate Leadership: Finally Poised For Major Change?, Toni G. Wolfman

New England Journal of Public Policy

When, several decades ago, interested observers began commenting on the absence of women and minorities from corporate boardrooms and executive suites, there was not much data on the role of women in the national economy, little benchmarking, and few efforts to make the business case for breaking down the barriers that had been excluding women from positions of corporate power. Since that time, academic researchers and activists from many venues have produced a wealth of data, arguments for diversifying corporate leadership, and strategies and resources designed to create opportunities for women and minorities to advance to those positions. And yet ...


New Directions In Workforce Development: Do They Lead To Gains For Women?, Susan R. Crandall, Surabhi Jain Mar 2007

New Directions In Workforce Development: Do They Lead To Gains For Women?, Susan R. Crandall, Surabhi Jain

New England Journal of Public Policy

In order to achieve gender equality, it is critical to resurrect women’s interests as a driving force in the formulation of workforce development policies and programs. Current workforce strategies are centered on helping economically disadvantaged individuals gain employment in high demand industries that offer opportunities to earn family-sustaining wages. Yet many of these high-growth industries consist of male-dominated occupations, which provide lower earnings and advancement potential for women. Because women continue to be channeled into lower-paying fields, demand-driven workforce policies may result in lower earnings for women. To address gender biases, increased emphasis should be placed on selecting jobs ...


Diversification Of A University Faculty: Women Faculty In The Mit Schools Of Science And Engineering, Nancy Hopkins Mar 2007

Diversification Of A University Faculty: Women Faculty In The Mit Schools Of Science And Engineering, Nancy Hopkins

New England Journal of Public Policy

A broadly diverse faculty is critical to MIT’s educational mission, and significant efforts have been made to achieve a faculty whose diversity reflects that of the students we train. To assess the success of some of these efforts, I examined the percentage of women faculty in the Schools of Science and Engineering over time. In Science, the increased number (and percentage) of women faculty today is the consequence of: pressures associated with the civil rights movement in the early 1970s; unusual efforts between 1996 and 2000 by former Dean of Science Bob Birgeneau in response to the 1996 Report ...


Future Promise For Women In Science, Christine Armett-Kibel Mar 2007

Future Promise For Women In Science, Christine Armett-Kibel

New England Journal of Public Policy

This article examines possible reasons why women are still not making it to the top in the hard sciences in academia. It considers two major difficulties that women face. The first concerns the psychological nature of women, which is alleged to be unsuited to the competitive and aggressive mindset considered necessary for scientific achievement. The second concerns the childbearing and child-nurturing roles of women, which make it difficult for them to conform to the intense, time-consuming demands of an academic career in science. The article argues that many of the qualities associated with the female stereotype are actually human characteristics ...


Walking The Maternal Tightrope: Work And Family In America, Roxanne A. Donovan, Andrew L. Pieper, Allison N. Ponce Mar 2007

Walking The Maternal Tightrope: Work And Family In America, Roxanne A. Donovan, Andrew L. Pieper, Allison N. Ponce

New England Journal of Public Policy

In the last few decades, an unprecedented number of women with children have entered the U.S. workforce. The ability to negotiate the roles of parent and employee is important to the health and financial well-being of these women and their families, but institutional and social barriers impede the process. Using the empirical and theoretical literature on women and work, this article examines these barriers. The authors address the impact of cultural ideals, psychological processes, and public policy on the maternal work-family balance. Several changes that would help create an atmosphere supportive of balance are explored, including increased support for ...


Foreword, Sherry H. Penney Mar 2007

Foreword, Sherry H. Penney

New England Journal of Public Policy

The author of the foreword speaks about how this issue touches on the subjects of women's rights and how their struggle to break through the glass ceiling has given them more empowerment than ever. The article also speaks about the works within the issue and how each one talks about the struggle, the progress, and success of women in today's working and educational world.


Women In Power, Margaret A. Mckenna Mar 2007

Women In Power, Margaret A. Mckenna

New England Journal of Public Policy

The country is filled with powerful women, but women in power remain significantly underrepresented across a variety of professional fields, in business, academe, politics, and the media. With more women enrolled in colleges today than men, continued underrepresentation of women in leadership roles throughout society is not just morally unacceptable, it is economically damaging. The nation needs to maximize all human capital, in order to meet our own challenges and stay competitive in this global economy. Young women need to be supported in developing the knowledge and skills necessary for being leaders and catalysts for change. Reflecting on a career ...


Women In New England Politics, Paige Ransford, Carol Hardy-Fanta, Anne Marie Cammisa Mar 2007

Women In New England Politics, Paige Ransford, Carol Hardy-Fanta, Anne Marie Cammisa

New England Journal of Public Policy

This essay addresses a serious deficiency in the literature on women and politics in the United States today: the lack of attention to regional variation and, more specifically, the absence of research on women’s representation in New England. This deficiency is particularly troubling since political analysts of all stripes typically portray New England as imbued with ideological, individual, and structural characteristics likely to lead to rates of political representation higher than the nation as a whole. This essay provides a brief history of women in politics for New England as a whole; describes the current status of women at ...


We've Got The Power: Rise Of Women Entrepreneurs, Phyllis Swersky, Aileen Gorman, Jessica Reardon Mar 2007

We've Got The Power: Rise Of Women Entrepreneurs, Phyllis Swersky, Aileen Gorman, Jessica Reardon

New England Journal of Public Policy

The authors address women’s recent entrepreneurial successes in local, national, and international settings, offering, as a case study, one nonprofit organization whose mission is to support women entrepreneurs and help them grow: The Commonwealth Institute. In examining The Commonwealth Institute, the authors provide insight into the challenges facing some of the women entrepreneurs they work with in Massachusetts. They also offer some strategies to make sure women continue to make a significant contribution to New England’s economy.


Rethinking Retirement Policy In Massachusetts, Ellen A. Bruce Mar 2007

Rethinking Retirement Policy In Massachusetts, Ellen A. Bruce

New England Journal of Public Policy

Women are significantly poorer than men in old age. One major cause of women’s disproportional poverty is retirement income policy that bases pensions and savings incentives on earned income. This paper describes the structure of our retirement policies and argues that some policies should be implemented that are not associated with earned income as a way to both support women’s caregiving roles and insure their economic well-being in old age.


Life Balance: Can We Have It All?, Beth Brykman Mar 2007

Life Balance: Can We Have It All?, Beth Brykman

New England Journal of Public Policy

Women today struggle to make difficult choices involving their children and their careers. Can they achieve that elusive sense of life balance? Beth Brykman taps her personal experience and her professional marketing skills to craft this well-researched issue. Having been a full-time employed, parttime employed, and a stay-at-home mom, Brykman interviewed more than one hundred mothers, some employed, some not, from many walks of life, letting the women speak for themselves about the reality of their lives and satisfaction with the paths they selected. This insightful discussion of contemporary motherhood captures the many challenges facing women, offering the pro’s ...


I Am A Contradiction: Feminism And Feminist Identity In The Third Wave, Meredith A. Evans, Chris Bobel Mar 2007

I Am A Contradiction: Feminism And Feminist Identity In The Third Wave, Meredith A. Evans, Chris Bobel

New England Journal of Public Policy

How is Third Wave feminism defined? What are the implications for self-labeling as a feminist and the evolution of the “I’m not a feminist, but. . . .” group? While much controversy surrounds the etiology and even the very existence of a “Third Wave” of feminism, this nascent movement is a significant aspect of the current dialogue on contemporary feminism. Therefore, it is important to examine the history and the meaning of the identity of Third Wave. In an attempt to elucidate contemporary feminism, four key Third Wave collections of personal narratives were chosen and analyzed for current definitions of feminism. The ...


Why Not A Dollar?, Evelyn Murphy Mar 2007

Why Not A Dollar?, Evelyn Murphy

New England Journal of Public Policy

Statisticians point out that women do not yet have quite as many years’ experience in the workforce as men have. It’s true that for the generation that began working in the 1960s, fewer women than men have a steady forty or fifty years of on-the-job experience. So maybe there should be a gap of a few pennies (at most!) to reflect that slight disadvantage. But not 23 cents’ worth! Social scientists hedge their conclusions about what causes that broad gap with disclaimers. They acknowledge that biases exist in their measurements. They admit that they cannot say for sure that ...


Numbers Are Not Enough: Women In Higher Education In The 21st Century, Sherry H. Penney, Jennifer Brown, Laura Mcphie Oliveria Mar 2007

Numbers Are Not Enough: Women In Higher Education In The 21st Century, Sherry H. Penney, Jennifer Brown, Laura Mcphie Oliveria

New England Journal of Public Policy

Women are now the majority of students in institutions of higher education in the United States, and in many ways women as students and faculty have seen significant progress. But numbers do not tell the whole story. Subtle forms of discrimination continue to exist, and the higher up the pyramid you go, the fewer women are to be found, whether among tenured faculty, as presidents and provosts or as board members and board chairs. Many steps can be taken to improve the situation. Some institutions are recognizing that. We note some positive changes and discuss areas where improvement is needed ...


Do What You Love, Cathy E. Minehan Mar 2007

Do What You Love, Cathy E. Minehan

New England Journal of Public Policy

This article is about the author’s career and how it has taken her to many places in her life and beyond. She starts on her first day of training in New York and ends up with her as President of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston. She describes balancing her life with her career and the rewards and difficulties of it all.