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Are we human, or are we rational?

When you hear the word “economics,” what’s the first thing that comes to mind? Supply and demand? Interest rates? Maybe just complex graphs and configurations? You’re not to blame, but there’s a more approachable branch that we can explore: welfare economics. It’s how we evaluate the aggregate well-being of all of society, and how it can be improved or, yes, maximized. It’s the examination of efficiency versus equity (See “The Big Tradeoff”) and the study of how our government might have an opportunity (and an obligation) to step in and champion social welfare…
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Published On: October 17, 2017 |
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Get to know LPP Minor alumnus Kevin Opoku-Gyamfi

“This is not a time for anybody to sit on the sidelines. People should really think hard and find ways to be involved. This is your world. You should make it the way you see fit,” says Northeastern University alumnus Kevin Opoku-Gyamfi…
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Published On: October 16, 2017 |
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Award-winning monograph explores how to source and utilize data to improve cities

  In a new thought-provoking monograph, Dietmar Offenhuber, an architect, information designer and urban planner, challenges the way practitioners think about waste, infrastructure and urban governance. Published last month by MIT Press, Waste in Information: Infrastructure Legibility and Governance explores how data can be sourced, used and governed to improve cities. On Friday, Oct. 6,…
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Published On: October 10, 2017 |
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Professor finds commonalities and similarities in dozens of Asian urban real estate megaprojects

  With the urban future of the world lying in rapidly growing cities in Asia, Africa and Latin America, a new book examines key questions of land rights at the center of the political battles that are shaping these cities. Gavin Shatkin, an associate professor in Northeastern’s School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs, found…
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Published On: October 6, 2017 |
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Guest Column: How my MPA helped me manage projects for Boston’s Housing Innovation Lab

  By Monique Gibbs This past spring, I was selected to be a Rappaport Public Policy Fellow, which allowed me to manage two exciting projects for the Housing Innovation Lab at the city of Boston’s Department of Neighborhood Development. The projects focused on improving constituent access to affordable housing resources. For instance, I created an…
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Published On: October 5, 2017 |
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To raise [the minimum wage] or not to raise, that is the question

When we examine any issue through an economic lens, there are two distinct possibilities for focusing—normative or positive. The former answers the question of “what will happen?” and the latter, “what should we do?” Using normative economics, our class was challenged to debate a $15 minimum wage in Massachusetts. While debates we are familiar with more often revolve around our moral convictions of what’s right and wrong (“positive”), this was purely about costs and benefits. ..
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Published On: October 4, 2017 |
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Faculty in the Media: September 2017

The faculty at the School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs continue to be reliable sources of expertise on current pressing issues. Below is a list of articles during the month of September that reference our knowledgeable staff and their research.  

Published On: October 3, 2017 |
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MPP student to apply military skills to improve, expand Boston-based nonprofit

  A Northeastern student and U.S. Coast Guard veteran is applying his interest in law, public policy and behavioral sciences to help improve and expand initiatives at All Dorchester Sports and Leadership, a Boston-based nonprofit organization whose mission is to develop the skills of at-risk youth and strengthen their families by providing them with an…
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Published On: October 2, 2017 |
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New paper explores judicial and electoral institutions’ role in Japan’s nuclear restarts

A new paper co-authored by Daniel Aldrich sheds light on the impact of conditions influencing reactor restarts in Japan after 3/11. In “All Politics is Local: Judicial and Electoral Institutions’ Role in Japan’s Nuclear Restarts,” Northeastern professors Aldrich and Timothy Frazer use qualitative comparative analysis based on nearly 30 interviews and five case studies to…
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Published On: September 28, 2017 |
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MPA alumna joins Department of Veterans Affairs’ Institute for Clinical Research

  Valerie Amaral, who graduated in 2016 with a Master of Public Administration, has recently moved to Washington D.C. to work at the Institute for Clinical Research, a government affiliated nonprofit corporation through the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. In her role as grants management specialist, Amaral manages the administration of research-based contracts and grants…
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Published On: September 27, 2017 |
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