News & Commentary - Archive 2013

December 11, 2013

A prominent program that claims to reduce infant and maternal deaths in rural India by encouraging mothers to deliver in private hospitals has been unsuccessful, despite the investment of more than $25 million since 2005, a new Duke University study finds.

The Chiranjeevi Yojana program in Gujarat, a state in northwestern India, received the Wall Street Journal Asian Innovation Award in 2006 and has been hailed by some as a model for wide adoption throughout India.

December 8, 2013

President Obama this week repeated an earlier call to raise the minimum wage as part of a larger effort to fix persistent problems in the economy. But the president should go further: He should create a federal job guarantee for all citizens.

December 4, 2013

America’s workers would not be subjected to low wage jobs if they were assured of employment at non-poverty wages. Maintenance of full employment with available jobs offering livable wages would accomplish that goal. To get from here to there would require the United States to comply with the terms of an existing law, the Full Employment and Balanced Growth Act of 1978.

December 4, 2013

“It’s no secret that government in not working in America,” former Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell said Tuesday at the Sanford School. Two things are stopping government at the federal and state level from getting things done: partisanship and lack of courage by elected officials, he said.  At the federal level, President Obama has “basically no Republican support on anything,” he said. 

December 3, 2013

Three weeks ago, the NC Dream Team, a group of undocumented high-school students, launched a petition and phone campaign directed at N.C. Attorney General Roy Cooper, the UNC Board of Governors and the N.C. Community College System to demand in-state tuition.

November 24, 2013

In an effort to keep educational costs in check, America’s cash-strapped states, local school districts and charter schools are hiring less costly novice teachers. I understand that Pittsburgh Public Schools may soon be among them. Superintendent Linda Lane has said she hopes to find new college grads in the two-year Teach for America program to help fill 15 to 30 teaching vacancies next fall.

November 13, 2013

Two national security experts from opposite sides of the fence explored divergent views on whether U.S. surveillance tactics should be revealed to the American public during a debate at the Sanford School of Public Policy on Monday.

“The government has secrets and we try to find them out.  We have to be free to write or we don’t have self-government,” Pulitzer-Prize-winning reporter Barton Gellman said.

November 8, 2013

At a time when Americans seem obsessed by the sanctity and immutability of their borders, you have to wonder how the government could essentially lose track of a chunk of American soil. You also have to wonder why we are cutting off new patches of American land again today through another construction project along the Rio Grande: the 18-foot-high border fence with Mexico.

November 7, 2013

Last week, Duke Professor of Public Policy and Political Science Bruce Jentleson held his first Google Hangout with the students of his 21st Century American Foreign Policy online course —a MOOC (Massive Open Online Class) run through the Coursera consortium that kicked off on October 20.

November 6, 2013

Education research clearly documents that investments in early childhood programs are among the smartest investments that states can make.