Stanford in the News

Talkin' "turkey": The linguistic link between the bird and the country

This article cites Dan Jurafsky, professor of linguistics and of computer science, noting that although the Spanish introduced the Meleagris gallopavo, the bird that is native to North America, to Europe in the 15th century, it was probably the Portuguese who spread the bird throughout the continent.

Yet another way that poor countries will suffer the most from climate change

This article features a new study co-authored by Dave Donaldson, associate professor of economics and senior fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research, and Arnaud Costinot and Cory Smith of MIT, which found that an economic model of global agriculture that predicts what grows where, what food costs on the global market and what crops are traded between countries, in a warming world, compared with a counterfactual model in which countries aren't allowed to import and export food, suggested little difference in how much relief trade can bring for countries struggling with crop losses.

Firm that teaches 'life skills' to suspected shoplifters extorts them, suit alleges

This article quotes Joan Petersilia, professor of law, commenting on the tactics of Corrective Education Co., which purports to give low-level, first-time shoplifters a valuable opportunity to learn how to make better choices, while saving them a criminal record and sparing law enforcement resources.

With this hire, the FCC could soon get tougher on privacy and security

This article quotes George Triantis, professor of law, on the hiring of Jonathan Mayer, doctoral student in computer science, as the Federal Communications Commission's technical lead for investigations into telephone, television and Internet service providers.

Income inequality makes the rich more Scrooge-like, study finds

This article features a new study led by Robb Willer, professor of sociology, which found that higher-income people were less inclined to be generous both when they came from states where income inequality is high and when they were made to believe that there was a sharp divide between rich and poor.

Q. and A.: Jindong Cai on 'Beethoven in China'

This article is an interview with Jindong Cai, associate professor (performance) in the Center for East Asian Studies, on his new book co-authored with his wife, writer Sheila Melvin, "Beethoven in China: How the Great Composer Became an Icon in the People's Republic."

The worst band to play a James Bond song would be ?

This is an interview with Adrian Daub, associate professor of German studies, on Bond theme songs. Co-author Charles Kronengold is an assistant professor of music.

139 countries could get all of their power from renewable sources

This article quotes Mark Jacobson, professor of civil and environmental engineering, and describes the energy plan he will present at U.N. COP 21 climate talks later this month.

Having kids can make parents less empathetic

This article is written by Jamil Zaki, assistant professor of psychology, on how emotional investment in children can make people feel like they don't have as much space to care about anyone else.

Adam Johnson wins National Book Award in fiction, Ta-Nehisi Coates in nonfiction

This article notes that Adam Johnson, associate professor of English, has won the National Book Award for fiction with his short story collection, "Fortune Smiles."

BMW's fear of lawsuits blinds it to a customer's idea

This article quotes James Lattin, professor at the Graduate School of Business, on the disadvantages of a company accepting product suggestions from the public.

Goal of the Manhattan Project historical park is to 'remember and learn from' nation's nuclear achievements

This article quotes Siegfried Hecker, professor (research) of management science and engineering and senior fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, on the significance of America's World War II effort, as commemorated by the proposed Manhattan Project National Historical Park.

Unmitigated climate change to shrink global economy by 23 percent, researchers find

This article notes that Marshall Burke, assistant professor of Earth system science and center fellow at the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, is a co-author with researchers from the University of California, Berkeley, of a new study that predicts that rising temperatures due to climate change will wreak havoc on economic output.

The key to political persuasion

This article is co-authored by Robb Willer, professor of sociology, and Matthew Feinberg of the University of Toronto, on their study findings that people struggled to set aside their reasons for taking a political position and failed to consider how someone with different values might come to support that same position in a debate.

Complex problem made simple sends computer scientists wild

This article quotes Ryan Williams, assistant professor in computer science, commenting on a potential breakthrough in a long-standing theoretical computer science problem called graph isomorphism.

West Virginia ruling could clarify the rights of criminal defendants

This article quotes Jeffrey Fisher, professor (teaching) of law, commenting on the importance of a recent ruling by the West Virginia Supreme Court that a man could withdraw a guilty plea he made in 2002 for a robbery and rape because prosecutors had withheld DNA testing results suggesting that he was probably innocent.

This is the real unemployment rate

This article is a guest post written by Ed Lazear, professor at the Graduate School of Business and senior fellow at the Hoover Institution, on the two measures of the country's employment situation: the widely reported unemployment rate, the proportion of the labor force that is without a job, and the employment rate, the proportion of the working-age population (16 and above) that has a job.

What's driving inequality: CEO pay or company success?

This story features a new paper co-authored by Nicholas Bloom, professor of economics and senior fellow at the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research; David J. Price, doctoral student in economics; Jae Song of the Social Security Administration; Fatih Guvenen of the University of Minnesota and Till von Wachter of the University of California, Los Angeles, which found that while incomes of the highest-paid workers (e.g., those earning more than 90 percent or 99 percent of all others) had grown faster than the median, they had not grown faster than those of their co-workers. Quotes Bloom.

How to apologize without looking weak

This article quotes Jeffrey Pfeffer, professor at the Graduate School of Business, on how we instinctively respect strength, confidence and assurance, although we think we want apologies from those who have harmed us.

'Leadership qualities' vs. competence: Which matters more?

This is an interview with Lindred Greer, assistant professor at the Graduate School of Business, on her study with researchers at Stanford and at Erasmus University about which set of qualities - leadership qualities or what is actually required from the people leading teams and other working groups - matters most to team performance.

Tackling plastic pollution with worms

This article features study findings by researchers at Stanford and in Beijing, China, that mealworms can safely eat Styrofoam and other types of plastic and while deriving energy from the process. Quotes co-author Wei-Min Wu, senior research engineer in civil and environmental engineering, and Craig Criddle, professor of civil and environmental engineering.

School vs. society in America's failing students

This article quotes Martin Carnoy, professor of education, on a recent study he co-authored with Emma García from the Economic Policy Institute in Washington and Tatiana Khavenson from the Institute of Education at the Higher School of Economics in Moscow, which suggests that socioeconomic deficits impose a particularly heavy burden on American schools.

16-year-olds in D.C. could vote for president in 2016, under proposal

This article quotes Nathaniel Persily, professor of law, on how the legal argument against allowing younger residents of the nation's capital to vote in federal elections could be tenuous.

In swimming, jellyfish and lampreys really pull their weight

This article features new research from researchers at Stanford and at the Marine Biological Laboratory, which found that jellyfish and lampreys both generate areas of low pressure that force water past their bodies, instead of creating high-pressure zones by pushing against the water. Quotes John Dabiri, professor of civil and environmental engineering and of mechanical engineering, and senior author of the study.

Teens spend a 'mind-boggling' 9 hours a day using media, report says

This article quotes James Steyer, professor (consulting) in Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity, on the "mind-boggling" volume of media technology that children are exposed to on a daily basis. Steyer also cites Stanford study findings that found dramatic differences in cognitive control and the ability to process information between heavy media multitaskers and light media multitaskers.