Thursday, February 25, 2010

Juveniles in Residential Placement

Presents information about juvenile offenders held in residential placement. The number of juvenile offenders in residential placement in publicly and privately operated juvenile facilities has declined steadily since 2000. In 2008, fewer than 81,000 juvenile offenders were housed, which represents the lowest number since 1993. This fact sheet includes data from the Census of Juveniles in Residential Placement and the Juvenile Residential Facility Census, both of which are 1-day counts of the juvenile placement population.

Source: Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (USDoJ)

Download full pdf publication | Link to Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention

Measuring the Information Society 2010

From the press release
Prices for information and communication technology (ICT) services are falling worldwide, yet broadband Internet remains outside the reach of many in poor countries, ITU says in its Measuring the Information Society 2010 report

The report features the latest ICT Development Index (IDI), which ranks 159 countries according to their ICT level and compares 2007 and 2008 scores. "The report confirms that despite the recent economic downturn, the use of ICT services has continued to grow worldwide," says Sami Al Basheer Al Morshid, Director of ITU’s Telecommunication Development Bureau (BDT). All 159 countries included in the IDI have improved their ICT levels, and mobile cellular technology continues to be a key driver of growth. In 2010, ITU expects the global number of mobile cellular subscriptions to top five billion. "At the same time, the report finds that the price of telecommunication services is falling — a most encouraging development," said Mr Al Basheer.

The IDI combines 11 indicators into a single measure that can be used as a benchmarking tool globally, regionally, and at national level, as well as helping track progress over time. It measures ICT access, use and skills, and includes such indicators as households with a computer, the number of fixed broadband Internet subscribers, and literacy rates.

Source: International Telecommunication Union [via United Nations Pulse Blog]

Download full pdf report | Download pdf Executive Summary | Link to International Telecommunication Union

'Enhanced interrogation' memos report [US DOJ]

Investigation into the Office of Legal Counsel's Concerning Issues Relating to the Central Intelligence Agency's Use of "Enhanced Interrogation Techniques" on Suspected Terrorists, US Department of Justice Office of Professional Responsibility, released publicly February 19, 2010 [concluding that two Bush administration lawyers committed professional misconduct when they wrote memos authorizing the use of certain interrogation techniques that critics have called torture

Source: U.S. Dept. of Justice via The Jurist

Site to download full pdf report

Midterm Election Challenges for Both Parties

From Summary:
Nine months ahead of the midterm elections, voters have conflicted attitudes about both political parties. Opinions of the Republican Party have improved significantly, and for the first time in years the GOP’s favorable ratings nearly equal the Democratic Party’s. Voting intentions for the fall elections also remain closely divided. However, the Democratic Party is still better regarded in many respects than is the GOP and far more people continue to blame the Republicans than the Democrats for the current state of the economy. And despite frustrations with his stewardship of the economy, bottom-line opinions of Barack Obama have not changed in the past few months

Source: Pew Research Center for People and the Press

Download full pdf publication
| Download pdf topline questionnaire | Link to online summary

Private-Public Sector Collaboration to Enhance Community Disaster Resilience: A Workshop Report

The terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 (9/11) on the United States prompted a
rethinking of how the United States prepares for disasters. Federal policy documents
written since 9/11 have stressed that the private and public sectors share equal
responsibility for the security of the nation’s critical infrastructure and key assets. Private sector entities have a role in the safety, security, and resilience of the communities in which they operate. Incentivizing the private sector to expend resources on community efforts remains challenging. Disasters in the United States since 9/11 (e.g., Hurricane Katrina in 2005) indicate that the nation has not yet been successful in making its communities resilient to disaster.

In this book, the National Research Council assesses the current states of the art and practice in private-public sector collaboration dedicated to strengthening community disaster resilience.

Source: National Academies Press

Download entire pdf publication (free reg. required) | Download Executive Summary (pdf)

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Modest and Uneven: Physician Efforts to Reduce Racial and Ethnic Disparities

While nearly half of U. S. physicians identify language or cultural communication barriers as obstacles to providing high-quality care, physician adoption of practices to overcome such barriers is modest and uneven, according to a new national study by the Center for Studying Health System Change (HSC). Despite broad consensus among the medical community about how physicians can help to address and, ultimately, reduce racial and ethnic disparities, physician adoption of several recommended practices to improve care for minority patients ranges from 7 percent reporting they have the capability to track patients’ preferred language to 40 percent reporting they have received training in minority health issues to slightly more than half reporting their practices provide some interpreter services. The challenges physicians face in providing quality health care to all of their patients will keep mounting as the U.S. population continues to diversify and the minority population increases.

Source: Center for Studying Health System Change

Download full pdf issue brief
| Link to online brief

From Egypt to Umbria: Jewish Women and Property in the Medieval Mediterranean.

This article compares the financial activities of medieval Jewish women in Italy and the Mediterranean. Contrary to Jewish legal tradition, which curtailed women’s financial autonomy, by the later Middle Ages communities across the region increasingly allowed women to manage their own dotal property, inherit property from a variety of sources, and engage in loan banking. An examination of the historical developments of some Jewish communities in Egypt, Spain, and central Italy suggests that this only occurred in times of communal crisis. Because all Jewish communities in the Middle Ages owed their respective governments a fiscal contribution or faced expulsion, money needed to be controlled by competent managers. In times of crisis, this could include women. Thus, in times of Mediterranean convivencia, Jewish communities flourished and followed their own laws, including prohibitions against female financial autonomy.
This article argues that in times of disintegrating Mediterranean convivencia, however, Jewish women were able to actively contribute to the welfare of their community via their financial autonomy.

Author: Frank, Karen
Source: California Italian Studies Journal, 1(1), via eScholarship Repository

Download full pdf publication | Link to online abstract

Monday, February 22, 2010

Updated: "Education under attack"

Education under attack, 2010: a global study on targeted political and military violence against education staff, students, teachers, union and government officials, aid workers and institutions

Source: UNESCO

Download full pdf publication | Link to all UNESCO Education Publications

Does Google Make Us Stupid?

Respondents to the fourth "Future of the Internet" survey, conducted by the Pew Internet & American Life Project and Elon University's Imagining the Internet Center, were asked to consider the future of the internet-connected world between now and 2020 and the likely innovation that will occur. The survey required them to assess 10 different "tension pairs" - each pair offering two different 2020 scenarios with the same overall theme and opposite outcomes - and to select the one most likely choice of two statements. Although a wide range of opinion from experts, organizations, and interested institutions was sought, this survey, fielded from Dec. 2, 2009 to Jan. 11, 2010, should not be taken as a representative canvassing of internet experts. By design, the survey was an "opt in," self-selecting effort.

Source: Pew Internet and American Life Project

Link to online report

Europeans broadly satisfied with their lives, but survey highlights concerns over the future of the economic and social situation

Europeans are on average broadly satisfied with their personal situation, but less satisfied when it comes to the economy, public services and social policies in their country, according to an opinion survey released today. The Eurobarometer on the social climate in the EU also found large differences between countries, with people in the Nordic countries and the Netherlands generally most satisfied with their personal situation.

Source: Europa

Download pdf in English | Link to online site to download in more languages

Workers' Response to the Market Crash: Save More, Work More?

The stock market crash of 2008 significantly dimmed the retirement prospects of workers approaching retirement. These workers are heavily dependent on 401(k) plans, as opposed to traditional defined benefit pensions, as a source of retirement income. During the economic downturn, these plans lost about one-third of their value. Even before the crash, many older workers lacked the assets needed to enjoy a comfortable retirement.

The rational response to a sharp decline in retirement wealth is to spread the pain – save more, work longer, and consume less in retirement – to the point where the incremental pain from each response is the same. The extent to which workers are absorbing a portion of the loss by saving more and working longer is thus critical for assessing their retirement prospects.

Source: Center for Retirement Research at Boston College

Download full pdf publication | Link to online introduction

Afghanistan: Politics, Elections, and Government Performance

In the context of a review of U.S. strategy in Afghanistan during September-November 2009, the performance and legitimacy of the Afghan government figured prominently. In his December 1, 2009, speech on policy in Afghanistan going forward, President Obama stated that the Afghan government would be judged on performance, and "The days of providing a blank check are over." The policy statement was based, in part, on an August 2009 assessment of the security situation furnished by the top commander in Afghanistan, General Stanley McChrystal, which warned of potential mission failure unless a fully resourced classic counterinsurgency strategy is employed. That counterinsurgency effort is deemed to require a legitimate and effective Afghan partner. The Afghan government's limited writ and widespread official corruption are identified by U.S. officials as factors helping sustain the insurgency in Afghanistan. President Hamid Karzai has been able to confine ethnic disputes to political competition through compromise with faction leaders, but these political alliances have limited his ability to stock his government with politically neutral and technically competent officers.

Source: Congressional Research Service

Download full pdf publication | Link to online overview

"As Men Do with Their Wives": Domestic Violence in Fourteenth-Century Lucca

Marriage disputes, such as those contained in the records of the episcopal court of Lucca, offer a glimpse into the meanings and effects of domestic violence in the fourteenth century. In one case in particular, the case of Guilielino and his wife Sitella, violence is the centerpiece of the marriage dispute. In this conflict, Guilielino, complaining that Sitella had left his household against the law of marriage, petitioned the court to force the restitution of his wife and marital rights under penalty of excommunication. Guilielino and Sitella’s testimonies indicate that both parties sought to exploit social and legal preconceptions of gender. Guilielino insisted that the violence in question was not excessive, but moderate and appropriate for a husband who must correct his wife, while Sitella described Guilielino as inhuman and depraved, impugning his ability to provide for her or to control himself. To Guilielino, violence was a tool for correction and a means of confirming his masculinity. Sitella used language that indicated her own helplessness, describing occasions on which Guilielino threatened her, beat her, deprived her of food and drink, and tried to kill her, all while emphasizing her obedience. The episcopal court, torn between preserving the indissolubility of marriage and protecting a member of its diocese, granted Sitella a separation a mensa
et throro, from table and bed, freeing her from her marital obligations, but also preventing her from remarrying. Violence thus served several functions in this case: as a tool for reinforcing gender relations, as a means of legally justifying abandonment, and as the impetus for creative legal solutions within the episcopal court
Author:Wieben, Corinne
Source: California Italian Studies Journal, Italian Studies Multicampus Research Group, UC Office of the President via eScholarship Repository

Download full pdf publication | Link to online abstract

Pervasive Image Capture and the First Amendment: Memory, Discourse, and the Right to Record

As digital image technology proliferates in camera phones, iPhones, and PDAs, almost any image we observe can be costlessly recorded, freely reproduced and instantly transmitted. We live, relate, work, and decide in an environment in which pervasive image capture from life is routine. During the last half decade, captured images have come to underpin crucial elements of ongoing private and public discourse; digital image capture has become a ubiquitous adjunct to memory and a pervasively accepted mode of connection and correspondence.

Digitally captured images precipitate conflicts between government authority and free expression. From efforts to suppress cell phone videos of official abuse or private malfeasance to prosecutions of “sexting,” the proliferation of digital image technology will require legal decision makers to come to grips with the First Amendment status of pervasive image capture. This Article commences the task.

Source: Scholarship at Penn Law via Nellco Legal Scholarship Repository

Download pdf publication | Link to online abstract

Electronic Legal Resources on International Terrorism

This site aims to provide comprehensive and accurate legal information on the steps taken by the international community and individual countries in the fight against international terrorism.

Stored data are accessible in full-text, and provide up-to-date information on counter-terrorism conventions, resolutions, and national criminal laws worldwide.

Model laws, legislative guides, and other legal tools can also be accessed to assist national authorities in setting up the structures and adopting the legislation necessary to implement the global legal framework against terrorism.

Source: United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime

Link to site database

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Beyond Compliance: Rethinking Why International Law Really Matters


The conceptual, and more recently empirical, study of compliance has become a central preoccupation, and perhaps the fastest growing sub-field, in international legal scholarship. The authors seek to put in question this trend. They argue that looking at the aspirations of international law through the lens of rule-compliance leads to inadequate scrutiny and understanding of the diverse complex purposes and projects that multiple actors impose and transpose on international legality, and especially a tendency to oversimplify if not distort the relation of international law to politics. Citing a range of examples from different areas of international law-ranging widely from international trade and investment to international criminal and humanitarian law-the authors seek to show how the concept of compliance (especially viewed as rule-observance) is inadequate to understanding how international law has normative effects. A fundamental flaw of compliance studies is they abstract from the problem of interpretation: Interpretation is pervasively determinative of what happens to legal rules when they are out in the world yet “compliance” studies begin with the notion that there is a stable and agreed meaning to a rule, and we need merely observe whether it is obeyed.

Source: New York University Public Law and Legal Theory Working Papers. Paper 174.

Download full pdf publication | Link to online abstract

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Sick at Work: Infected Employees in the Workplace During the H1N1 Pandemic

From News Release
A new Briefing Paper entitled Sick at Work: Infected Employees in the Workplace During the H1N1 Pandemic, released by the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, finds that while almost 26 million employed Americans age 18 and over may have been infected with the H1N1 flu in 2009, nearly 8 million employees took no time off work while infected. Relying on data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the
Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) on rates of illness and work attendance during the months of September through November, 2009, the study suggests that an alarming number of employees attended work while sick, and this pattern was especially prevalent in industries with low paid sick days coverage. The findings suggest that a lack of paid sick days allowed H1N1 to spread in the workplace.

Source: Institute for Women's Policy Research

Download full pdf publication | Link to Institute for Women's Policy Research

Investing in Improvement: Strategy and Resource Allocation in Public School Districts

From the Executive Summary
The operating environments of public school districts are largely void of the market forces that reward a company's success with more capital and exert pressure on it to eventually abandon unproductive activities. HBS senior lecturer Stacey Childress describes the strategic resource decisions in 3 of the 20 public school districts that she and colleagues have studied through the Public Education Leadership Project at Harvard. The stories in San Francisco, New York City, and Maryland's Montgomery County occurred largely before the districts faced dramatic decreases in revenues, though they show the superintendents facing budget concerns near the end of the narratives. Even so, the situations share common principles that superintendents and their leadership teams can use to make differentiated resource decisions—reducing spending in some areas and increasing it in others with a clear rationale for why these decisions will produce results for students.

Source: Harvard Business School Working Papers

Download full pdf publication | Link to online summary

Pew Report : Social Media and Young Adults

Two Pew Internet Project surveys of teens and adults reveal a decline in blogging among teens and young adults and a modest rise among adults 30 and older. Even as blogging declines among those under 30, wireless connectivity continues to rise in this age group, as does social network use. Teens ages 12-17 do not use Twitter in large numbers, though high school-aged girls show the greatest enthusiasm for the application.

Source: Pew Internet and American Life Project

Download full pdf report | Link to online overview

Becoming Protagonists for Integration: Youth Voices from Segregated Educational Spaces

We report the preliminary findings of a community-based participatory action research project grounded in the principles of emancipatory education. Born as a grassroots response to profound racial and socioeconomic segregation between the "gifted" and "regular" learning programs, this action research collaboration was centered in a middle school. The project curriculum was built on the premise that youth have the potential to become protagonists of integration. With that in mind,the project provided a space in which to become increasingly conscious about segregation and to imagine and enact new possibilities for integration. Findings from in-depth qualitative interviews with six youth participants reveal various youth efforts toward integration in three distinct layers of consciousness that we refer to as voice: (a) reflective voice as an awareness of self in segregated places and the associated social consequences; (b) dialogic voice as communal recognition of the structural nature of segregation, solidarity in opposition to it, and a common need for healing and reconciliation; and (c) praxis voice as the commitment to transforming segregated educational spaces through a critique of segregation and demand for subdermal diversity. We discuss the implications of these findings for continued transformative action at the local site and lessons for educational pedagogies and actions in general.

Source: InterActions: UCLA Journal of Education and Information Studies, 6(1)

Download full pdf publication | Link to eScholarship repository record

Change and Continuity in Labor Relations in Mexico at the Beginning of the 21st Century

From the introduction
The corporative system has predominated in industrial relations in Mexico for the past 70 years. Some people believed it was approaching its end with establishment of the neoliberal economic model, but some 20 years have passed since then and it appears to persist. Others assumed that arrival to power in the year 2000 of a political party other than the traditional PRI would imply the end of this system of industrial relations, but that has not been the case. Nevertheless, important changes have taken place in these past six years. In this essay, we analyze the changes in labor relations during the last 13 years of the PAN government (2000-2009), the first occasion in 75 years of a change of party in power in Mexico.

Source: Institute for Research on Labor and Employment
UC Los Angeles [via escholarship repository]

Download full pdf publication | link to eScholarship Repository Record

Exploring the Intersection of Science Education and 21st Century Skills

An emerging body of research suggests that a set of broad "21st century skills"--such as adaptability, complex communication skills, and the ability to solve non-routine problems--are valuable across a wide range of jobs in the national economy. However, the role of K-12 education in helping students learn these skills is a subject of current debate. Some business and education groups have advocated infusing 21st century skills into the school curriculum, and several states have launched such efforts. Other observers argue that focusing on skills detracts attention from learning of important content knowledge.

Exploring the Intersection of Science Education and 21st Century Skills addresses key questions about the overlap between 21st century skills and scientific content and knowledge; explores promising models or approaches for teaching these abilities; and reviews the evidence about the transferability of these skills to real workplace applications.

Source: National Academies Press

Download full pdf of publication (free-Registration required)
| Link to record online

Getting Value Out of Value-Added: Report of a Workshop

"The National Research Council and the National Academy of Education held a workshop, summarized in this volume, to help identify areas of emerging consensus and areas of disagreement regarding appropriate uses of value-added methods, in an effort to provide research-based guidance to policy makers who are facing decisions about whether to proceed in this direction."

Source: National Academies Press

Download pdf (registration required)
| Link to online record

Immigration: Terrorist Grounds for Exclusion and Removal of Aliens

The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) spells out a strict set of admissions criteria and exclusion rules for all foreign nationals who come permanently to the United States as immigrants (i.e., legal permanent residents) or temporarily as nonimmigrants. Notably, any alien who engages in terrorist activity, or is a representative or member of a designated foreign terrorist organization, is generally inadmissible. After the September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, the INA was broadened to deny entry to representatives of groups that endorse terrorism, prominent individuals who endorse terrorism, and (in certain circumstances) the spouses and children of aliens who are removable on terrorism grounds. The INA also contains grounds for inadmissibility based on foreign policy concerns. The report of the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (also known as the 9/11 Commission) concluded that the key officials responsible for determining alien admissions (consular officers abroad and immigration inspectors in the United States) were not considered full partners in counterterrorism efforts prior to September 11, 2001, and as a result, opportunities to intercept the September 11 terrorists were missed. The 9/11 Commission's monograph, 9/11 and Terrorist Travel, underscored the importance of the border security functions of immigration law and policy. In the 110th Congress, legislation was enacted to modify the terrorism-related grounds for inadmissibility and removal, as well as the impact that these grounds have upon alien eligibility for relief from removal. The Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2008 (P.L. 110-161) modified certain terrorism-related provisions of the INA, including exempting specified groups from the INA's definition of "terrorist organization" and expanding immigration authorities' waiver authority over the terrorism-related grounds for exclusion. P.L. 110-257 expressly excludes the African National Congress (ANC) from being considered a terrorist organization, and provides immigration authorities the ability to exempt most terrorism-related and criminal grounds for inadmissibility from applying to aliens with respect to activities undertaken in opposition to apartheid rule in South Africa. Immigration reform is an issue in the 111th Congress, and legislative proposals may contain provisions modifying the immigration consequences of terrorism-related activity. The case of Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab, who allegedly attempted to ignite an explosive device on Northwest Airlines Flight 253 on December 25, 2009, has refocused attention on terrorist screening during the visa process.

Source: Congressional Research Service

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| Link to online summary

Monday, February 08, 2010

Data Collection Methods Semi-Structured Interviews and Focus Groups

The authors developed an introductory short course on qualitative research methods. This document provides an annotated version of the course material, which includes an overview of semi-structured interviews and focus groups, two techniques that are commonly used in policy research and applicable to many research questions.

Source: RAND Corporation

Download full pdf publication | Link to RAND Corporation

Children in the Aftermath of Immigration Enforcement

This report examines the consequences of parental arrest, detention, and deportation on 190 children in 85 families in six locations, providing in-depth details on parent-child separations, economic hardships, and children's well-being. The contentious immigration debates around the country mostly revolve around illegal immigration. Less visible have been the 5.5 million children with unauthorized parents, almost three-quarters of whom are U.S.-born citizens. Over several years, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) intensified enforcement activities through large-scale worksite arrests, home arrests, and arrests by local law enforcement. The report provides recommendations for stakeholders to mitigate the harmful effects of immigration enforcement on children.

Source: The Urban Institute

Download full pdf report | Link to online abstract and Executive Summary

'Warm' or 'Competent'? What Happens When Consumers Stereotype Nonprofit and For-profit Firms

In 2002, a promising new nonprofit that wanted to link school teachers in search of basic classroom supplies with willing donors nearly collapsed because of potential backers' concerns that despite having a worthwhile goal, the organization itself would not be able to execute its mission competently.

What a difference a few years can make. is thriving today. But the nonprofit's near-death experience was one of the reasons that compelled a team of academic researchers to explore how and why consumers, investors and other stakeholders pigeonhole a company using stereotypes, often to its detriment. The study -- the first of its kind ever undertaken -- reveals that consumers frequently assign stereotypical views to nonprofits, such as, that brand them as warm, generous and caring organizations, but lacking the competence to produce high-quality goods or services and run financially sound businesses. In contrast, for-profit companies are seen as more competent from a balance sheet perspective, but are not necessarily socially aware.

Source: Knowledge @ Wharton

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| Link to online article

2009 State Teacher Policy Yearbook

The 2009 edition of the State Teacher Policy Yearbook is the National Council on Teacher Quality's third annual review of state laws, rules and regulations that govern the teaching profession. This year's report is a comprehensive analysis of the full range of each state's teacher policies, measured against a realistic blueprint for reform.

The release of the 2009 Yearbook comes at a particularly opportune time. Race to the Top, the $4.5 billion federal discretionary grant competition, has put unprecedented focus on education reform in general, and teacher quality in particular. In many respects, the Yearbook provides a road map to the Race to the Top, addressing key policy areas such as teacher preparation, evaluation, alternative certification and compensation. Our analysis makes clear that states have a great deal of work to do in order to ensure that every child has an effective teacher.

Source: National Council on Teacher Quality

Download full Report | Link to download reports by state

Leadership Development in Business Schools: An Agenda For Change

There is surprisingly little evaluation of business school or, for that matter, company leadership development efforts. What evidence exists suggests that business schools have not been particularly effective, overall, in their leadership development activities. In part this is because leadership development has been used more for fund raising than to guide either the curriculum or affect the faculty evaluation process. If business schools are going to take the mission of leadership development seriously, a number of changes are necessary.

Author: Jeffrey Pfeffer (CASBS Fellow 1999) Source: Stanford Graduate School of Business

Download full pdf publication | Link to online Abstract

U.S. Health Care and Real Health in Comparative Perspective: Lessons from Abroad

Among the 19 rich democracies I have studied for the past 40 years, the United States is odd-man-out in its health-care spending, organization, and results. The Obama administration might therefore find lessons from abroad helpful as it moves toward national health insurance. In the past hundred years, with the exception of the U.S., the currently rich democracies have all converged in the broad outlines of health care. They all developed central control of budgets with financing from compulsory individual and employer contributions and/or government revenues. All have permitted the insured to supplement government services with additional care, privately purchased. All, including the United States, have rationed health care. All have experienced a growth in doctor density and the ratio of specialists to primary-care personnel. All evidence a trend toward public funding. Our deviance consists of no national health insurance, a huge private sector, a very high ratio of specialists to primary-care physicians and nurses, and a uniquely expensive (non)system with a poor cost-benefit ratio. The cure: increase the public share to more than 65% from its present level of 45%. In regards to funding the transition cost and the permanent cost of guaranteed universal coverage: no rich democracy has funded national health insurance without relying on mass taxes, especially payroll and consumption taxes. Whatever we do to begin, broad-based taxes will be the outcome. Three explanations of "why no national health insurance in the U.S.?" are examined.

Source: Working Paper Series, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, UC Berkeley

Download full pdf publication | Link to online record in eScholarship Repository

Neighborhood Ethnic Density as an Explanation for the Academic Achievement of Ethnic Minority Youth Placed in Neighborhood Disadvantage

The underachievement of ethnic minority youth from disadvantaged neighborhoods is a
pervasive educational issue this nation is facing. Based on an ecological perspective, we examined the contextual effects of neighborhood ethnic density and neighborhood disadvantage on the academic achievement of Hmong immigrant youths. Utilizing hierarchical linear modeling techniques in analyzing 3,185 Hmong and White students (for comparisons) across 79 neighborhoods, we found when we controlled for student demographics, Hmong students in the most disadvantaged neighborhoods (high-crime and high-poverty) performed better academically than their ethnically identical peers in the more safe and affluent neighborhoods. Further, with student demographics held constant, Hmong adolescents in the most disadvantaged neighborhoods academically outperformed their White counterparts with the same neighborhood conditions. These intriguing findings resulted from ethnic density in that the predictor of the
Hmong population percentage in each neighborhood appeared to absorb the significant effect of neighborhood types. Hmong students would be more likely to achieve highly when they were surrounded by more Hmong residents in their neighborhoods. The logic behind ethnic density functioning as a positive factor for Hmong students within neighborhoods high in disadvantage is discussed along with the implications of this finding for policy.

Source: Berkeley Review of Education, 1(1), . Retrieved from:

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Unauthorized Alien Students, Higher Education, and In-State Tuition Rates: A Legal Analysis

Currently, federal law prohibits states from granting unauthorized aliens certain postsecondary educational benefits on the basis of state residence, unless equal benefits are made available to all U.S. citizens. This prohibition is commonly understood to apply to the granting of "in-state" residency status for tuition purposes. Legislation to amend this federal law has routinely been introduced in previous Congresses, and several similar bills have been introduced in the 111th Congress, including H.R. 1751, S. 729, and H.R. 4321. Meanwhile, some states have passed laws aimed at making unauthorized state residents eligible for in-state tuition without violating this provision. This report provides a legal overview of cases involving immigrant access to higher education, as well as an analysis of the legality of state laws that make in-state tuition rates available to illegal immigrants.

Source: Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress

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Avon Global Center for Women and Justice at Cornell Law School: Legal Resources

"This Legal Resources section provides access to treaties and other international and regional documents, statutes and case law from around the world relating to gender-based violence. By making these resources available, our goal is to promote the use of laws and rules aimed at providing access to justice to survivors of gender-based violence."

Link to Avon Global Center for Women and Justice at Cornell Law School: Legal Resources

State Responses to Immigration: A Database of All State Legislation

This database contains all bills and resolutions related to immigrants or immigration that were considered by state legislators across the nation. At present, the database contains all immigration-related legislation for 2007. Data for 2008 and historic 2001-2006 data will be added in the coming months.

Source: Migration Policy Institute

Link to MPI Search site

Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Almost All Millennials Accept Interracial Dating and Marriage

"Over the last several decades, the American public has grown increasingly accepting of interracial dating and marriage. This shift in opinion has been driven both by attitude change among individuals generally and by the fact that over the period, successive generations have reached adulthood with more racially liberal views than earlier generations. Millennials are no exception to this trend: Large majorities of 18-to-29 year olds express support for interracial marriage within their families, and the level of acceptance in this generation is greater than in other generations."

Source: Pew Research Center

Download Pew report on racial attitudes in the United States | Link to online fact sheet

World Bank: Global Economic Prospects 2010

"The global economic recovery that is now underway will slow later this year as the impact of fiscal stimulus wanes. Financial markets remain troubled and private sector demand lags amid high unemployment,..."

Source: World Bank

Download full pdf publication | Link to news release

Report of the National Equality Panel (U.K.)

From the Executive Summary

"The independent National Equality Panel was set up to examine how inequalities in
people’s economic outcomes – such as earnings, incomes and wealth – are related to
their characteristics and circumstances – such as gender, age or ethnicity."

"Our report shows the way economic advantage reinforces itself across the life cycle, and on to the next generation. It matters more in Britain who your parents are than in many other countries."

Source: Government Equalities Office, United Kingdom

Download full pdf report | Download summary | Link to online overview

Pew Survey Report: Senate Legislative Process A Mystery To Many

"In the latest installment of the Pew Research Center’s News IQ Quiz, just 32% know that the Senate passed its version of the legislation without a single Republican vote. And, in what proved to be the most difficult question on the quiz, only about a quarter (26%) knows that it takes 60 votes to break a filibuster in the Senate and force a vote on a bill. The survey was conducted before Massachusetts Republican Scott Brown won a special election to the Senate on Jan. 19; Brown’s election means Senate Democrats can no longer count on a 60-vote majority once he takes office."

Source: Pew Research Center for People and the Press.

Download full pdf report | Download topline questionnaire | Link to online summary

Statistical Portrait of Hispanics in the United States

This statistical profile of the Latino population is based on Pew Hispanic Center tabulations of the Census Bureau's 2008 American Community Survey (ACS). The ACS is the largest household survey in the United States, with a sample of about 3 million addresses. It covers virtually the same topics as those in the long form of the decennial census. The ACS is designed to provide estimates of the size and characteristics of the resident population, which includes persons living in households and, for the first time, persons living in group quarters.

Source: Pew Hispanic Center

Download full pdf report
| Link to online summary and tables