Date Title Podcast Doc More
02/21/2012 Going Solo: A Conversation about Cities, Social Policy, and Public Sociology with Eric Klinenberg and Sudhir Venkatesh

Going Solo: A Conversation about Cities, Social Policy, and Public Sociology with Eric Klinenberg and Sudhir Venkatesh
Co-sponsored by the Craft of Ethnography Project, a joint initiative of the Columbia University Department of Sociology and the NYU Institute for Public Knowledge.

The incredible rise of living alone is the greatest social change that we’ve failed to name and identify, let alone understand. In 1950, four million Americans lived alone. Today, more 32 million do, accounting for 28 percent of American households. The rates of living alone are even higher in urban areas. More than 40 percent of all households consist of just one person in Atlanta, Denver, Seattle, San Francisco, and Minneapolis. In Manhattan, the figure is nearly 50 percent.

Eric Klinenberg examines the seismic impact of these changes in his new book, Going Solo: The Extraordinary Rise and Surprising Appeal of Living Alone (Penguin Press). In this public event, the renowned Columbia University sociologist and best-selling author Sudhir Venkatesh joins Klinenberg in conversation.  They will discuss Going Solo, the state of contemporary cities, and the reemergence of public sociology.


Eric Klinenberg is Professor of Sociology, Public Policy, and Media, Culture, and Communications at New York University, and editor of the journal Public Culture. His books include Heat Wave:  A Social Autopsy of Disaster in Chicago, which won six scholarly and literary prizes and is currently being adapted as a feature documentary, and Fighting for Air: The Battle to Control America’s Media. In addition to his scholarly publications, Klinenberg has contributed to the New York Times Magazine, Rolling Stone, Fortune, the Wall Street Journal, the London Review of Books, and This American Life.  (Listen to a story from Going Solo on a podcast from This American Life).

Sudhir Venkatesh is William B. Ransford Professor of Sociology, and the Committee on Global Thought, at Columbia University. His most recent book is Gang Leader for a Day (Penguin Press), which received a Best Book award from The Economist and is currently being translated into several languages. His previous books include Off the Books: The Underground Economy of the Urban Poor (Harvard University Press, 2006) about illegal economies in Chicago, and American Project: The Rise and Fall of a Modern Ghetto (2000) about life in Chicago public housing. Venkatesh’s editorial writings have appeared in The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune, and the Washington Post, and his stories have appeared in This American Life, WIRED, and on National Public Radio.

A book signing with both speakers will immediately follow the conversation.  Both books will be available for sale.

02/21/2012 The United States and its Covert War in Mexico: Who’s Winning?
The United States and its Covert War in Mexico: Who’s Winning? Ginger Thompson, Washington Correspondent, The New York Times  
02/21/2012 Rudin Center for Transportation Presents "A Conversation with Council Member James Vacca"

Rudin Center for Transportation Presents "A Conversation with Council Member James Vacca"

Council Member Vacca’s involvement in public service and transportation policy began early in life at the age of 13 when he organized his fellow JHS students to rally for better bus service from the MTA. Before long, he was fighting for stop signs, traffic lights, the fixing of potholes, and other local issues that affected his community.

In 1980, at the age of 25, Mr. Vacca became the District Manager of Community Board #10, where he served until he took office as Councilmember of the 13th District in January of 2006. For 26 years as District Manager, he fought for one of the most diverse districts in the borough. At Community Board #10, Jimmy Vacca was constantly in the vanguard on issues facing the residents of his district. Since he started fighting against graffiti and other types of "quality of life" crimes in the 1980's, his former community board district benefited from his proactive stance by being rated both the safest and cleanest in the Bronx for many years. Over the past several years, he has been the voice of the community in its efforts against rampant overdevelopment, and through his leadership, City Island, Throggs Neck, and Ferry Point were recently rezoned to stop the rapid growth in these neighborhoods.

Today, Mr. Vacca represents the Bronx’s 13th Council district which includes the areas of Pelham Parkway North and South, Pelham Bay, Country Club, City Island, Throggs Neck, Allerton, and Morris Park. As chair of the New York City Council Committee on Transportation, Mr. Vacca plays an integral role in the transportation and infrastructure policymaking.

02/17/2012 IPSA's Book Launch of Ecomind by Frances Moore Lappé

IPSA's Book Launch of Ecomind by Frances Moore Lappé

What if the ecological crisis were, at heart, a crisis of perception? In her new book, EcoMind, Frances Moore Lappé helps facilitate a much needed shift.

Join the International Public Service Association (IPSA) for a discussion and book launch with Moore Lappé. Engage in the dialogue with the NYU community about developing your own Ecomind. Appetizers and drinks will be served. The event will be followed by a small reception.

The author argues that much of what is wrong with the world, from our eroding soil to our eroding democracies, results from ways of thinking out of synch with human nature and nature’s rhythms. Moore Lappé weaves her analysis together with stories of real people the world over, who, having shifted some basic thought patterns, are shifting the balance of power in our world. She reveals that the gap between the world we long for and the world we thought we were stuck with can be bridged after all--if we can learn to think like an ecosystem. EcoMind shows us the way.

02/17/2012 Film Screening and Discussion: Invisible Slaves: An MTV EXIT Special

Film Screening and Discussion: Invisible Slaves: An MTV EXIT Special

Please join us for a special screening of Invisible Slaves: An MTV EXIT Special, a documentary film hosted by nineteen time Latin Grammy Award Winners, Calle 13. The screening will be followed by remarks on the partnership between UNICEF and MTV, the challenges and outcomes of using media and celebrity to raise awareness about human trafficking, and a short question and answer session. MTV EXIT is a campaign about freedom — about our rights as human beings to choose where we live, where we work, who our friends are, and who we love.

02/16/2012 Creating a Sustainable Food Chain from Farm to Fork

Creating a Sustainable Food Chain from Farm to Fork

Please join the Wagner Food Policy Alliance in welcoming Walter Robb, Co-CEO of Whole Foods, and Carolyn Dimitri, Professor of Food Studies at Steinhardt for a lively conversation on organics, ethical supply chain management and the role of institutions, such as Whole Foods, in supporting a sustainable food chain.   Discussion, 6:30-8 PM / Reception, 8-9 PM

Walter Robb, Co-CEO, joined Whole Foods Market in 1991 operating the Mill Valley, CA store until he became president of the Northern Pacific Region in 1993 where he grew the region from two to 17 stores. He became Executive Vice-President of Operations in 2000, Chief Operating Officer in 2001 and Co-President in 2004. Now as Co-CEO, Robb oversees six regions and is on the Whole Planet Foundation Board of Directors. An avid organic advocate, Robb is on the Advisory Board for the Organic Center for Education and Promotion. He is also on the Board of Regents for the University of the Pacific.

Carolyn Dimitri is an applied economist interested in food issues, which includes organic food, local foods, and the economic history of food marketing institutions.  Prior to joining the Food Studies faculty at NYU Steinhardt as a Research Associate Professor, she worked as a senior economist at the Economic Research Service of the US Department of Agriculture for 12 years.  Along with collaborators, she has obtained grants to study retailer and intermediary behavior regarding organic marketing and procurement practices, and urban agriculture around the US. Other recent work includes an analysis of regional food hubs across the country.  Dr. Dimitri earned her Ph.D. in Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics from the University of Maryland, College Park, and a BA in Economics from the University at Buffalo. She blogs at

02/15/2012 The Interaction Between Climate, Surface Hydrology, and Human Water Demands
The Interaction Between Climate, Surface Hydrology, and Human Water Demands
Dr. Tara Troy, Earth Institute Post-Doctoral Fellow, IRI, Columbia University   

This discussion explores two case studies on how climate, surface hydrology, and human water demands interact. The first case focuses on Northern Eurasia to examine how changes in climate are driving changes in the surface hydrology. Through the use of a numerical land surface model and in-situ observations, Dr. Troy shows that the interactions of precipitation and temperature trends during the past century have resulted in changes in the snowpack and streamflow in the region. The second case focuses on the interactions of climate variability and human water demands in the Indus River Basin, the breadbaskets of India and Pakistan. 

02/15/2012 The Road Map to Ending Trafficking: Policy, Law Enforcement and Social Services

The Road Map to Ending Trafficking: Policy, Law Enforcement and Social Services

Brownbag lunch panel on the system-level ways we approach the issue of ending human trafficking in NYC and the U.S. Emphasis will be placed on the roles, current efforts and common barriers different agencies play and experience in securing justice for trafficking victims.

Tentative speakers include representatives from the NYC Office of the Criminal Justice Coordinator, the Kings County Police Department and Safe Horizon.

This event will start promptly at noon.

02/14/2012 Pimping in the US: A Deeper Look at Commercialized Sex

Pimping in the US: A Deeper Look at Commercialized Sex

At this Valentine’s Day event, we will learn about domestic sex trafficking of American nationals from Bradley Myles, Executive Director of Polaris Project. Afterwards, guests are invited to a dessert and drinks reception with representatives from various organizations serving women and children engaged in prostitution.

02/14/2012 Mega-dams, Oil and 'Terrorists': Blowback from U.S. Geopolitics in the Horn of Africa

Mega-dams, Oil and 'Terrorists':  Blowback from U.S. Geopolitics in the Horn of Africa

Claudia Carr, Associate Professor, Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management, University of California, Berkeley  
02/13/2012 Book Launch: What the U.S. Can Learn from China

Book Launch: What the U.S. Can Learn from China
Presented by Demos and NYU Wagner

Ann Lee, Demos Senior Fellow
in conversation with
Matthew Bishop, US Business Editor and NY Bureau Chief of The Economist

Introduced by Rich Benjamin

While America is still reeling from the financial crisis and high unemployment, China’s economy continues to grow and is predicted by some to surpass the U.S. by 2020. In her new book, What the U.S. Can Learn from China, expert Ann Lee outlines lessons the U.S. can glean from China’s growth.

From education to governance and foreign aid, Lee details the policies and practices that have made China a global power and then isolates the ways the U.S. can use China’s enduring principles to foster much-needed change at home. She does not ignore China’s shortcomings, particularly in the area of human rights, but rather asserts that overemphasizing these differences will cause the US to miss a vital opportunity.

02/13/2012 Supply Chains: Slave-Made Products in the Global Market

Supply Chains: Slave-Made Products in the Global Market

As part of "Stop Traffic: Human Trafficking Awareness Week," Wagner's International Public Service Association, Wagner's Women's Caucus, and Wagner Health Network are pleased to co-sponsor this kick-off event.

This event will explore the supply chains of some common products, from cocoa to clothing. We will examine our role as consumers in creating the demand for slave-made products, and strategies for ensuring that products are made with adult, compensated labor. Potential speakers will come from The Body Shop, Free the Slaves, Made by Survivors, Kopali Organics, and Human Rights First.

02/09/2012 Campaign Watch 2012

Campaign Watch 2012
Presented by NYU Wagner and the Wagner Policy Alliance

with Steve Schmidt, Robert Shrum, and George Stephanopoulos
and introduced by Diane Yu, NYU Chief of Staff and Deputy to the President

Join us for a lively discussion moderated by George Stephanopoulos of ABC's "Good Morning America" and "This Week" and featuring Steve Schmidt, former senior advisor to the John McCain campaign in 2008, and Robert Shrum, NYU Wagner Senior fellow and former senior-advisor to the Kerry-Edwards Campaign in 2004.  The speakers will evaluate the upcoming presidential election in light of the first several caucuses and primary elections, and will discuss the current state of the Republican field, public opinion on the Obama administration and his campaigning efforts, and potential general election scenarios.

Please note:  This event is free but requires a ticket and PRE-REGISTRATION FOR THIS EVENT IS NOW CLOSED.  A limited quantity of tickets will be available at the door.

The event can also be watched live online at 

House opens at 12:00pm.  Event begins promptly at 12:30pm.

02/07/2012 Bringing it All Back Home: International Development in Reverse
Bringing it All Back Home: International Development in Reverse
  Brad Heckman, Chief Executive Officer, New York Peace Institute  
02/06/2012 "Daisy Bates: First Lady of Little Rock" Documentary Screening and Discussion

"Daisy Bates: First Lady of Little Rock" Documentary Screening and Discussion

The NYU Wagner Black Student's Alliance and Wagner's Women Caucus will be screening the documentary "Daisy Bates: First Lady of Little Rock" on Monday, February 6, 2012 from 5:30 - 8:00 pm in the Kimmel Center Room 803. Following the screening, there will be a Q&A session with the Director/ Producer Sharon La Cruise, an NYU alumni. Join us to celebrate Black History Month with this documentary  - refreshments will be served.

Synopsis: Daisy Bates: First Lady of Little Rock tells the story of a seven-year journey by filmmaker Sharon La Cruise to try to unravel the life of a forgotten civil rights activist named Daisy Bates. In 1957, Bates became a household name when she fought for the right of nine black students to attend the all-white Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas. Bates’ public support culminated in a constitutional crisis—pitting a president against a governor and a community against itself. As head of the Arkansas NAACP, and protector of the nine students, Daisy Bates would achieve instant fame as the drama played out on national television and in newspapers around the world. But that fame would prove fleeting and for her attempts to remain relevant, she would pay a hefty price.

Bio: Sharon La Cruise, Director/ Producer
Sharon La Cruise has worked in television and film for twenty years, both in the corporate and production aspects of the business. Currently, she is the Producer/ Director of Daisy Bates: First Lady of Little Rock, a feature length documentary on civil rights activist Daisy Bates, which will be broadcast February 2012 on PBS' Independent Lens. She began her television career with ABC Primetime sales, working closely with account executives and advertising agencies. She has worked for Blackside Ind., Firelight Media, Roja Productions, The Faith Project, The Coca-Cola Company, the 1996 Summer Olympic Games, and the Cable News Network (CNN). She has worked on: Shut up and Sing, Going Up River: The Long War of John Kerry, Beyond Brown: Pursing the Promise, Citizen King, Matters of Race, This Far By Faith: African-American Spiritual Journeys, The Life of Zora Neale Hurston, and CNN's Through the Lens, The Road to the White House and The Planetary Police. She currently works as an associate for the Ford Foundation in the JustFilms unit. She is a member of the International Documentary Association. She holds an M.A. degree in television journalism from New York University, and a B.A. in history from Adelphi University.

02/03/2012 Summer Courses Abroad Info Session

Summer Courses Abroad Info Session

Join us for a presentation by faculty and staff regarding Wagner’s courses abroad in Accra, Geneva, and Shanghai.

02/02/2012 Salary and Gender Issues in the Jewish Community with The Forward's Jane Eisner

Salary and Gender Issues in the Jewish Community with The Forward's Jane Eisner

For Wagner/Skirball Dual-Degree Students

Jane Eisner, editor of The Forward, will be coming to talk with Wagner/Skirball students and alumni and friends of the program about issues relating to salary and gender inequality in the Jewish professional field. Attendees are asked to read the following articles published by The Forward in December as preparation for the discussion:

01/31/2012 The Uses, Abuses, and Limitations of New Technologies in Unstable Areas for Humanitarian Monitoring
The Uses, Abuses, and Limitations of New Technologies in Unstable Areas for Humanitarian Monitoring Richard Garfield, Henrik H. Bendixen Professor of Clinical International Nursing, Columbia Nursing School   
12/12/2011 Roundtable Discussion on Long-Term Liabilities & Healthcare
Roundtable Discussion on Long-Term Liabilities & Healthcare
Presented by The Fund for Public Advocacy, in partnership with the Office of the New York City Public Advocate and NYU Wagner School of Public Service, with generous support from The New York Community Trust and The Peterson Foundation.  Co-sponsored by the Wagner Economics and Finance Association.

Keynote address:

Neera Tanden, President of the Center for American Progress

Carol Kellermann, Citizens Budget Commission Carol O’Cleireacain, Brookings Institute Bruce McIver, League of Voluntary Hospitals and Homes
Michael Powell, The New York Times, Moderator 
The Fund for Public Advocacy, in partnership with the Office of New York City Public Advocate Bill de Blasio and the NYU Wagner School of Public Service, with generous support from The New York Community Trust and the Peterson Foundation, is sponsoring a series of roundtable discussions to engage members of the public, government officials, and other key stakeholders on New York City’s long-term liabilities.  The first roundtable explored pensions, and this upcoming one will focus on healthcare.   New York City’s commitments to provide healthcare to current employees and our retirees are critical to preserving our middle class.  But a weak economy and rising costs will challenge our ability to make good on those responsibilities in the years ahead.  Our roundtable will explore different strategies for providing quality—and affordable—healthcare for our workforce in the long-term.
8:00 AM -- Registration 8:30 AM -- Keynote & Panel Discussion
A light breakfast will be served.
For more information on this event, please contact Lynn Pyfer at the Fund for Public Advocacy.  
12/09/2011 WSAFA: Film Screening of Venus Noire

WSAFA: Film Screening of Venus Noire

Co-sponsored by SNEAC and The Wagner Women's Caucus

The film Venus Noire, is a real-life story about the life of Saartjie Baartman, a black, Khoi domestic worker, who in 1810 was enticed by fame and fortune to leave her home in South Africa for Europe. Upon her arrival in London she faced dehumanization and extreme ridicule as she was displayed as a "freak of nature" by virtue of her unusual anatomy and sexual organs. She was shipped to France where she was studied, made to mimic savagery and expose her body in Carnivals and eventually in brothels, where she was sexually exploited.

Baartman died at the tender age of 27 of pneumonia and venereal disease, all alone and never having returned to her homeland. After her death, her sexual organs and brains were displayed in a French Museum and studied to establish a link between man and apes. After several years of the South African government requesting that the remains of Baartman be returned for a humane burial, she was eventually returned in 2002 and buried in her homeland.

We will explore the issues raised in Venus Noire, particularly the role of women in general, the perception of African women and how issues of sexuality, dignity and power play into society today.

12/08/2011 SCJR Brown Bag: Stop, Question & Frisk

SCJR Brown Bag: Stop, Question & Frisk

Join Students for Criminal Justice Reform (SCJR) for a brown bag dinner discussion on the stop, question and frisk policy of the New York City Police Department, featuring:

Pat Wing, former NYPD Captain, current Director of Uniform Operations with the Department of Public Safety at New York University, and a Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service Executive Master of Public Administration candidate.

Dinner and refreshments will be served.

12/08/2011 Engage2012 Opening Event

Engage2012 Opening Event

The Women of Color Policy Network at New York University's Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service will host a convening of leading people of color policy experts, practitioners and social change advocates working on issues related to immigration, racial justice, economic security, LGBTQ rights and reproductive and environmental justice to better understand how to work across communities to identify common policy goals and targets, strengthen coalitions and dismantle issue silos, and ultimately advance a multi-issue, intersectional framework to address structural and institutional inequalities and disparities present in society.

The public is welcome to attend the opening plenary of Engage2012 with policy experts, practitioners, thought leaders, key stakeholders, and members of the NYU community.

Confirmed Panelists Include:

--Cornell Belcher, President of Brilliant Corners Research and Strategy

--Rea Carey, Executive Director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force
--Cheryl Contee, Co-Founder of the award-winning Black political blog Jack and Jill Politics

--Susan Herman, President of the American Civil Liberties Union
--Marc Lamont Hill, host of the nationally syndicated television show Our World with Black Enterprise and Columbia University Professor
--Avis Jones-DeWeever, Executive Director of the National Council of Negro Women
--Maria Teresa Kumar, Executive Director and Co-Founder of Voto Latino
--Clarissa Martinez de Castro, Director of Immigration and National Campaigns at the National Council of La Raza
--Anika Rahman, President and CEO of the Ms. Foundation for Women
--Rashad Robinson, Executive Director of ColorOfChange
--Linda Sarsour, Director of the Arab American Association of New York
--Miriam Yeung, Executive Director of the National Asian Pacific American Women's Forum

 --Moderator: Sheryl Huggins Salomon, Managing Editor of The Root

Additionally, the following individuals are still pending confirmation:

--Reverend Al Sharpton, Founder and President of the National Action Network and host of MSNBC's PoliticsNation
--Kimberly Teehee, Senior Policy Advisor for Native American Affairs, White House Domestic Policy Council

Engage2012 is co-sponsored by: Applied Research Center, Demos, Drum Major Institute for Public Policy, Ford Foundation, Ms. Foundation for Women, National Council of La Raza, National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, National Urban League, Open Society Foundations, The Opportunity Agenda, Rock the Vote, Voto Latino and Women’s Funding Network

12/08/2011 Moving Forward, Getting to Zero: the AIDS Crisis after 30 Years

Moving Forward, Getting to Zero: the AIDS Crisis after 30 Years

Sponsored by the Stonewall Policy Alliance

Building upon this year's World AIDS Day theme, the event will bring together experts and practitioners from the fields of science, public health, public policy, and community activism to discuss how the HIV/AIDS epidemic generates an ever-evolving social and collective understanding of HIV/AIDS. Reflecting upon the almost immediate response of activists and artists, we wish to inform new activists in how to reinvigorate the public, policymakers, and the science and medical communities by deploying cultural, artistic, and deeply social responses once at the heart of the fight against the disease.

Moderator: Sean Cahill, Phd., Adjunct Assistant Professor of Public Administration at Wagner and Director of Health and Policy Research at the Fenway Institute.

Mitchell Warren, Executive Director of AVAC, Global Advocacy for HIV Prevention

Catherine Hanssens
, Executive Director and founder of the Center for HIV Law and Policy

Jaszi Alejandro, Youth & Diversity Programs, Gay Men's Health Crisis

Cheikh Traore
, Senior Policy Advisor, Sexual Diversity HIV Practice, United Nations Development Program

Imoh Colins Edozie, Executive Director of the Centre for Human Development and Social Transformation, in Nigeria

The event will begin with a panel discussion and then attendees will form interactive brainstorming groups to discuss provided scenarios that will allow them to posit questions to the speakers.

12/08/2011 Guest Lecture: Carlos Leite on "Sustainabillity Indicators in Sao Paulo"

Guest Lecture: Carlos Leite on
"Sao Paulo Sustainability Indicators: from formal to informal territories"

About the Speaker:
Carlos Leite, Professor, School of Architecture and Planning, Mackenzie Presbyterian University, Sao Paulo; Principal, Sustainable Development and Design consultant at Stuchi & Leite Projetos

Professor Leite is both a practicing architect and urbanist on sustainable urban development in global megacities.

His current research in Sao Paulo covers sustainability indicators in both the formal city center and the informal urban periphery.

12/06/2011 Thinking of Working in Philanthropy? Career Reflections from Gara Lamarche

Thinking of Working in Philanthropy? Career Reflections from Gara Lamarche

Join Wagner’s Alumni in Philanthropy Affinity Group in conversation with Mr. Gara LaMarche, Senior Fellow at Wagner. Mr. LaMarche, who previously served as President and CEO of Atlantic Philanthropies, will be sharing reflections from his rich career in philanthropy – fifteen years on the “giving end,” as well as twenty years before that on the “receiving end.” Mr. LaMarche will talk about how he made his career in philanthropy, provide insights on the state of the field and best ways to foster relationships in the philanthropic sector.

Visit to read Mr. LaMarche’s full biography.