Date Title Podcast Doc More
10/07/2009 Community Organizing Basics: A Social Change Leadership Network Learning Session

Thank you for your interest in the Community Organizing Basics learning session.

The session is currently filled to capacity, and we are no longer accepting RSVPs online.

To be placed on the event waiting list, please email by September 28, 2009. Be sure to include your name, organization, title and contact information. We look forward to your attendance at future RCLA and Social Change Leadership Network events.

For upcoming learning sessions, please visit

Thank you.

10/06/2009 Scaling Up Microfinance in Africa: Lessons from BRAC Uganda

The New York University Microfinance Initiative (NYUMI) and the
Wagner International Public Service Association (IPSA) present:

Mr. Arif Islam
Country Head of BRAC Uganda
Scaling up microfinance in Africa - Learning from What Works:
The Story of how BRAC grew to become one of the largest microfinance institutions in Uganda in less than three years

Join Mr. Arif Islam, the Country Head of BRAC Uganda, for an intimate discussion on the scaling up of microfinance in Africa.  Mr. Islam played a critical role in establishing BRAC as one of the largest microfinance institutions in Uganda in just three years.  In New York for only a week, Mr. Islam has graciously offered to give the Wagner community a unique perspective into the evolution of BRAC Uganda.
Please join us for an engaging discussion and reception following the presentation.

Mr. Arif Islam is the Country Head of BRAC Uganda.  Mr. Islam has played an instrumental role in launching BRAC Uganda in November 2005, and growing it to become one of the largest microfinance institutions in the country, in that time. BRAC Uganda has disbursed $35 million in loans to more than 90,000 borrowers through its network of 85 branch offices. It has also scaled up health, agriculture, adolescent development and education programs.  Under Mr. Islam's visionary leadership, BRAC has emerged as the largest non-profit in the country, employing more than 1,500 people and touching the lives of more than half a million poor people in Uganda.  

Mr. Islam joined BRAC in 1983 as a Program Organizer, and has since served as Regional Manager, Zonal Manager, and Program Manager of BRAC’s education program in both Bangladesh and Afghanistan.  He holds a Masters in Education and Development from the University of Bristol in the United Kingdom.

About BRAC Uganda:
In June 2006, BRAC began operating its Microfinance Program in two districts in Uganda - Kampala and Iganga. Since then, the program has successfully formed 2,352 groups, mobilized 63,407 poor women as members, and disbursed US$16.1 million in microloans to 43,967 members. Microloans are invested primarily in small-scale business, agriculture, and construction. Additionally, the BRAC Uganda primary education program has established 58 learning centers, trained 50 teachers, and graduated 844 children.  Currently 1,891 children are enrolled in the program.  For more information, please visit

About the International Public Service Association:
The International Public Service Association (IPSA) is a graduate organization that brings together members of the Wagner student body with an interest in international public service in order to provide a forum for exchange, debate, education and action in the areas of international public management, policy and finance. An integral part of Wagner School 's Global Public Service initiative, IPSA works in conjunction with faculty, administration, and other student organizations to address students with international interests and keep them informed on international program activities.

About the NYU Microfinance Initiative:
The NYU Microfinance Initiative (NYUMI) is a University-wide task force created to provide a forum for students, faculty, and community members to share knowledge about opportunities and developments in microfinance, raise awareness about microfinance in the New York University community, and connect with leading experts and practitioners in the field. For more information, please visit

For more information about the International Public Service Association at NYU's Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, please visit

Appetizers and light refreshments will be served.

Space is limited, please RSVP to  confirm your attendance.

10/01/2009 Democratic Elections: A tool for peace or catalyst of conflict?

Democratic Elections:  A tool for peace or catalyst of conflict?

Robin Ludwig, Senior Political Affairs Officer, United Nations Department of Political Affairs

09/30/2009 The Story of the Highline: A Conversation with Robert Hammond and Professor Ingrid Gould Ellen

The Story of the Highline: A Conversation with Robert Hammond and Professor Ingrid Gould Ellen

The Highline represents a radically new example of adaptive re-use of infrastructure in an urban environment, and sets a new bar for creative greening of cityscapes. While New Yorkers and visitors gain unique park space, local developers and businesses lose the eyesore of rusting, obsolescent infrastructure and the City develops the prospects of economic revitalization and property value increases.

This dramatic public-private solution did not manifest, despite its win-win promises, without tumult and challenge. Join the NYU Wagner Rudin Center and Professor Ingrid Gould Ellen for a conversation with Robert Hammond, co-founder of Friends of the High Line. Listen in on a dialogue covering Robert’s storied history with the Highline, from his brainchild through the recent opening of its first phase, covering the policies, politics, workarounds, and innovations that took the project from near disaster to success.

09/29/2009 Changing Climate and Water Management: A Perspective on Science and Implementation for Adaptation

Changing Climate and Water Management: A Perspective on Science and Implementation for Adaptation 

Upmanu Lall, Alan & Carol Silberstein Professor of Engineering, Columbia University; Director, Columbia Water Center; Senior Research Scientist, International
Research Institute for Climate & Society at Columbia University.

Changing climate poses significant risks to societies. Many of these risks are manifest through changes in the space and time availability of fresh water of suitable quality, and through changes in the incidence and severity of floods. It is through such changes that stresses in agriculture, disease incidence, ecological health, and energy supply and demand, and hence in the economics of many communities are felt, especially in developing countries. While anthropogenic climate change is the current concern, structured low frequency climate variability, i.e., persistent multi-year or decadal fluctuations in climate, poses a very similar challenge that societies need to adapt to.

In this talk, Upmanu Lall will provide examples of how an integrated approach to assessing and managing risks in water systems in a changing environment can be developed. This approach provides a core strategy for adaptation to a changing climate.

09/24/2009 Mobilizing Women for Economic Development:




Karen Grepin
Assistant Professor of Global Health Policy, NYU Wagner


Yaw Nyarko
Director, NYU Africa House and Professor of Economics, NYU FAS

Opening remarks by Ellen Schall, Dean, NYU Wagner

Followed by a Q&A and a wine and cheese reception.  Don't forget to bring valid photo ID!

NANA KONADU AGYEMAN-RAWLINGS, the former first lady of Ghana is committed to engaging women in the socio-economic and political progress of society by focusing her career on empowering women and putting both women and children on the political agenda. Mrs. Rawlings is also credited with the movement "Two Million Strong", where 870 pre-schools were setup for child-development. She is the founder of the grassroots 31st December Women's Movement in Ghana. Thanks to the efforts of Mrs. Rawlings, Ghana was one of the first nations approved by the United Nations Convention on the Right of the Child in 1991.

Members of the press should contact NYU Africa House via email or phone ((212) 998-4465) for more information.

09/24/2009 What Can the UN Do in Response to Extrajudicial Killings?

What can the UN do in response to Extrajudicial Killings Around the World?

Philip Alston, John Norton Pomeroy Professor at NYU Law School and UN Special Rapporteur on extrajudicial executions.

09/22/2009 An Evening with Robert Kaiser of The Washington Post

Hosted by the NYU's John Brademas Center for the Study of Congress, housed at NYU Wagner

The startling story of the monumental growth of lobbying in Washington, D.C., and how it undermines effective government.

For nearly half a century, Robert Kaiser has monitored the changes in American politics for The Washington Post. And it is from this insiders vantage point that, in this revelatory book, he chronicles the growing influence of the federal government in our lives and how it has given rise to an array of organized special interests who look to Washington for protection or assistance.

He describes how lobbyists grasped politicians all-consuming and ever-increasing need to raise money (an average Senate campaign cost $437,000 in 1974; in 2006, $7.92 million) and created a mutually beneficial, mutually reinforcing relationship between special interests and members of Congress. We see how behavior once considered corrupt or improper became commonplace, how special interests became the principal funders of elections, and how lobbyists and the politicians who depend on them have ignored such huge problems as health care, global warming, and the looming crisis for Medicare and Social Security.

A timely and tremendously important book that finally explains fully how Washington works today.

09/21/2009 Mega-Projects: New York: Building Big: A Critical Examination of the Planning of Mega Urban Transportation Projects

Mega-Projects: New York

Building Big: A Critical Examination of the Planning of Mega Urban Transportation Projects 
Professor Harry Dimitriou, Director of the Omega Centre at the University College of London, will outline a unique approach to the use of story-telling in its investigation of decision-making in the planning and delivery of ten urban transport mega-projects from around the world.   He will highlight some of the key research findings from the use of this methodology as applied to the Centre's first UK Case Study of the Channel Tunnel Rail Link.  His remarks will include comments on how these findings apply to other mature established areas such as New York as well as newly developing cities such as Abu Dhabi. 
This is the first is several talks to be given by leading thinkers from around the world addressing issues of common concern to New York and Abu Dhabi, the anchors of NYU's Global Network University.  

09/18/2009 Bridge Bash 2009

Please join NYU Wagner's Bridge: Students for Social Innovation for our annual Bridge Bash, one of the most exciting events of the fall semester. 

Bridge Bash is a social event that connects professionals, fellow students, alumni, and faculty interested in:
•    Social Entrepreneurship and Social Enterprise
•    Microfinance and Financial Access
•    Socially Responsible Investing
•    Corporate Social Responsibility

Wine and cheese will be served.

09/17/2009 Constitution Day: Rebalancing of Constitutional Powers of the Executive and Legislative Branches: A Status Report on the New Obama Administration

The third session will discuss approaches for implementing social media within an organizational context. It will focus on marrying the far-reaching possibilities mentioned in the first session with the tools demonstrated in the second session. This session will also offer general guidelines on how to design and implement social media strategies that cater to the needs of various audiences. To illustrate the organizational challenges that need to be overcome during the implementation of a new media strategy, the session will draw on established case studies and develop a project in the class based on one or more examples suggested by the participants. Participants will work together and learn how these tools can facilitate collaborations in the workplace and with external partners. 

This session is designed for people who are interested in or responsible for the actual implementation and management of new technologically driven projects.


The second session will be dedicated to describing the newest social media tools and training participants in how to use them. The workshop will explain how to use internet chat (Skype), wikis (Google,, RSS readers (Netvibes, Google Reader), blogs and Web sites, and microblogs (Twitter) and will give participants hands-on experience working with them. The particular challenges and possibilities of each tool will be discussed, and participants will learn how to adapt them to facilitate communication and coordination within organizations, between organizations, and in outreach to constituencies.

This session is designed for people who learn best by doing and those who are seeking hands-on experience with the actual tools. 


The first session introduces the dramatically transformed landscape in which nonprofits operate and addresses the revolution in modes of communication in general. The session will look at how these changes have made it possible for many more people to engage in new forms of activism, journalistic endeavors and efforts to shape policy and political processes, as well as enabling new modes of cooperation between individuals and organizations.   Participants will learn what new social media tools are out there and how groups can best use them to increase the effectiveness of an organization as a whole.

This session is designed for organizations that are curious about the possibilities of today's social media tools and want to learn how these tools can aid in accomplishing their organizational mission.  

07/23/2009 Health Care Delivery Tuscan Style

A roundtable discussion at NYU Wagner

Italy has a national health care system ranked number three by WHO for access and fairness with significantly lower cost and better health outcomes on OECD measures. As we discuss health care reform here at home, what might we learn from their practices?

Join us for an interesting and lively discussion with Ronda Kotelchuck, Executive Director of Primary Care Development Corporation, and Professor Paula Wilson, NYU Wagner, and three prominent Directors of the Tuscan Health Care System on the design and delivery of health care in Tuscany, a region in Italy noted for its primary care system.

- Alberto Zanobini, Manager of the Tuscan Region for Human Resources
- Carla Donati, Financial Manager for the Tuscan Region
- Maria Jose Caldes Pinilla, MD,  Consultant to WHO, Coordinator of International Health Cooperation program for Tuscany.

Moderated by:
- Jeanne Marie Kiss, Ph.D. Wagner alum and co-director of NYU Wagner/Medical School Summer Course

Reception to follow.
This program is a partnership of NYU Wagner with the Medical School of Florence Campus Abroad, and co-sponsored by NYU LaPietra-Wagner Policy Dialogues.

06/23/2009 A Conversation on Governance: A Multi-Industry Discussion on Best Practices for Organizational Leadership

Join the Wagner Alumni Association for a multi-industry discussion on best practices in:

-Organizational Leadership
-Managing Relationships with Boards of Directors
-Strategic Planning
-Community Relations


Al Smith, IV
Chairperson, St. Vincent's Hospital Medical Center

Henry Amoroso
President and CEO, St. Vincent's Hospital Medical Center

Moderated by

Lou Gordon
Director, BALCONY/Business and Labor Coalition of New York

06/17/2009 Councilmember Bill de Blasio

Councilmember Bill de Blasio

05/20/2009 Overcoming Barriers to Energy Efficiency in Existing Buildings

The First Annual Patty Noonan Memorial Policy Roundtable:
Presented by GreenHomeNYC in cooperation with NYU Wagner

The emergence of the green initiatives at the City, State and Federal level has brought advocates of all types together to ask the same question: Can't we just make our buildings more efficient now? The answer is "yes", but the combination of available programs, financing, and misleading information in some quarters makes the process difficult at best. Listen to some of our areas true believers, and discover that the programs and policies are in place, and that with determination, most buildings can reduce their carbon footprint substantially.

Introduction: Jerry Salama, Adjunct Professor, NYU Wagner & NYU School of Law

Moderator: Ariella Rosenberg-Maron. Deputy Commissioner, NYC Dept. of Citywide Administrative Services

Les Bluestone - Principal, Blue Sea Construction
Ashok Gupta - Air and Energy Program Director, NRDC
Kathryn Wylde - President & CEO of the Partnership for New York City
F.L. Andrew Padian, VP for Energy Initiatives, The Community Preservation Corporation

Patty Noonan Memorial Policy Roundtable is organized by GreenHomeNYC ( in cooperation with NYU Wagner as an annual event honoring the memory of Patty Noonan, who was an early advocate of sustainable affordable housing, a friend to many in the green building field, and a supporter of GreenHomeNYC. Patty participated actively both in financing sustainable affordable housing and in shaping the policy environment in New York. At the time of her passing, Patty served as Senior Vice President of Policy & Economic Development at the New York City Investment Fund, the director of the research & policy department at the Partnership for New York City, and represented the partnership on the Mayor’s Energy Policy Task Force. Previously, she directed the Partnership's High Performance “Green” Building program, which produced the first affordable ENERGY STAR homes in New York State. Patty earned a Masters degree in Public Administration from NYU Wagner and was a member of the 2000-2001 Coro Foundation's "Leadership New York" class, a yearlong program designed to develop the next generation of city leaders from among the public, private and non-profit sectors.

GreenHomeNYC Board of Directors:
Aaron Yowell, Andy Padian, Ariella Maron, Caitlin Fitzgerald, Gita Nandan, and Bomee Jung

About GreenHomeNYC: Since 2002, GreenHomeNYC has been connecting NYC residents with local experts and actionable information to help them improve the energy and environmental performance of their homes and buildings. GreenHomeNYC uses a peer-learning model that brings together interested volunteers to organize our programs, and to learn and teach others about green building in New York City. Read about our programs at

About the GreenHomeNYC Monthly Green Building Forum:
2009 will be GreenHomeNYC's seventh year of organizing the Monthly Green Building Forum. The Green Building Forum is held on the third Wednesday of each month (except December) at 6:30 PM and features presentations by green building practitioners followed by discussion.  The events are always free and open to the general public.

Our audience is an engaged and interactive crowd, ranging from 40 to sometimes more than 100 people. Guests tend to represent architects, landscape architects, and interior designers; members of the building-industry and related fields, as well as folks who work in city agencies and non-profits related to development; not to mention people interested in green building, but not active in the building/design industry -- students, professionals looking for a career change, co-op or condo board members / residents, and just plain folks.

05/14/2009 Powering the Future: Commercial Energy Efficiency

This event is being held by the New York League of Conservation Voters

Education Fund, NYU's Robert F. Wagner Graduate School for Public

Service and its Institute for Civil Infrastructure Systems, and Con

Edison at a two-part forum series that seeks to answer these questions.

The Commercial Energy Efficiency Forum will focus on state energy

efficiency policy relating to commercial enterprises and developers.

What can these companies do to support efficiency efforts? What should

government be doing to assist the business community in adopting energy efficiency standards?


Together, we are bringing together experts and stakeholders to discuss

what incentives exist, how they can be made more effective, the role of

energy efficiency mandates, and how programs could be more effectively



Panelists Include:

- Ramon Cruz, Vice President for Energy and Environment, Partnership for

New York City
- Hon. Paul DeCotis, Deputy Secretary for Egergy, State of New York
- Robert F. Fox, Jr., Partner, Cook+Fox Architects LLP Hon.

- Martha Hirst, Commissioner of the Department of Citywide Administrative

Services, City of New York
- Josh Sirefman, Senior Vice President for U.S. Development, Brookfield Properties
- Russell Unger, Executive Director, USGBC New York


Moderated by:

Isaac Dovere, Editor, City Hall & The Capitol 

05/12/2009 Essential Tools for Essential Organizing: Training for Trainers

Presented by RCLA’s Social Change Leadership Network

…Critically engaging your constituents through action, reflection, and collaboration…

This learning session, facilitated by Joan Minieri in collaboration with RCLA staff, connects social change leaders to practical, diverse and effective methods of popular education and training. The 2008 version of this learning session received positive response and feedback from the participants has been incorporated to make this year’s session even more dynamic.  The RCLA Social Change Leadership Network invites you to learn with us as we train with essential tools for essential organizing.

This session will provide the opportunity for you to:
o Identify training methods that provoke critical thought, participation and partnership;
o Learn with social change leaders and the RCLA team through hands-on experience; and
o Enhance your training design skills-set to help advance the work of your organization.

This training would be most beneficial for community organizers, program directors and coordinators that provide trainings, organizing and education work. 

Please note that participation priority will be given to  those who fit this description and to social change leaders who are attending an RCLA Social Change Leadership Network learning session for the first time.

A light breakfast and lunch will be provided. Space is limited!

Your participation in this event is free of charge, with special thanks to the Ford Foundation and the Leadership for a Changing World Research & Documentation Component of RCLA at New York University’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service.

Session Co- Facilitators: Joan Minieri (SCLN session coordinator), Amparo Hofmann-Pinilla (RCLA deputy director and SCLN director), and AiLun Ku (RCLA programs manager)

05/07/2009 Panel Discussion and Book Launch: Portfolios of the Poor: How the World's Poor Live on $2 a Day


The Financial Access Initiative and Africa House present a panel discussion followed by a book signing and wine and cheese reception.

Portfolios of the Poor: How the World’s Poor Live on $2 a Day

Authors: Daryl Collins, Jonathan Morduch, Stuart Rutherford and Orlanda Ruthven
Published by Princeton University Press

Opening Remarks:
Rogan Kersh, Associate Dean, NYU Wagner School of Public Service

Panel Discussion Participants:

  • Matthew Bishop, Chief Business Writer/American Business Editor, The Economist
  • Daryl Collins, Co-author, Portfolios of the Poor, Senior Associate, Bankable Frontier Associates
  • Bill Easterly, Professor of Economics, NYU, author of The White Man’s Burden
  • Jonathan Morduch, Co-author, Portfolios of the Poor, Professor of Public Policy and Economics, NYU and Managing Director, Financial Access Initiative
  • Yaw Nyarko, Professor of Economics, NYU, Director of Africa House

Link for more information:

05/06/2009 Recession, Budget Cuts, and Asian Americans: A Community in Crisis

A discussion with leading policy experts on the impact of the current economic crisis and city and state budget cuts on New York's Asian American communities and what you can do about it.

Moderated By:
Vanessa Leung, Deputy Director
Coalition for Asian American Children and Families (CACF)

Anthony Ng, Deputy Director of Policy and Advocacy
United Neighborhood Houses of New York (UNH)

Gigi Li, Policy Director for Child Welfare and Youth Employment
Neighborhood Family Services Coalition

Sponsored by:
NYU Wagner Asian Pacific American Student Alliance (
NYU Wagner Women of Color Policy Network (
Coalition for Asian American Children and Families (
Asian Americans for Equality (

05/06/2009 Councilmember David Yassky

With Councilmember David Yassky

05/05/2009 Capstone End Event Exhibition

The Capstone program is a valuable service that NYU Wagner proudly offers to the city, the region, and the world.

Join us for this year's end event exhibition where students will display summaries of their work.

04/30/2009 Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations, Gabriella Shalev
Please join the Bronfman Center for Jewish Student Life, the NYU Wagner-Skirball Dual Degree Program in Nonprofit Management and Judaic Studies, JeWPA (Jewish Wagner Professional Association), Hagshama, the Israeli Consul General and the Berman Jewish Policy Archive at NYU Wagner in welcoming Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations to NYU for a conversation on The State of Israel and its Challenges for its 62nd Year.

Space is limited, RSVP required.