Class on Design Thinking Makes Its Debut [Video]
A new course at NYU Wagner taught by Mike Peng of IDEO, an adjunct professor, introduced students to the concept of design thinking. In their final projects, student teams employed design thinking, an approach most commonly used in the development of consumer products, to effect policy change and social impact. The challenge was to come up with people-centered improvements for New York City schools, subways, hospital care, or other services. In this NYU Wagner video, Peng discusses design thinking and its relevance for change makers. The students presented their final presentations, also excerpted here, at the close of last semester (Fall, 2010). The course title was "Design Thinking: A Creative Approach to Problem Solving."
Conference on Social Theory, Politics and the Arts, Oct. 11-13
On October 11th, 12th and 13th, the Conference on Social Theory, Politics and the Arts (STP&A) -- the premier arts and cultural policy conference - will be conducted for the first time in more than a decade in New York City, and the first time ever at NYU. The 33rd annual conference, which was held last year in Vienna, Austria, will be chaired by NYU Wagner Professor Ruth Ann Stewart. It begins Thursday evening, Oct. 11, 2007, with an opening reception in the Puck Building in Manhattan, the landmark home of the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service. About 200 scholars, artists, and cultural-organization leaders from 26 countries and 22 states throughout the U.S. are expected to attend the conference and share their professional experience and research findings through papers and panels. The six conference themes are: Artists, Activism, and Social Change; Leadership in, of, and through the Arts; Sustaining Cultural Industries and Organizations; Role of the Arts in Bridging Ethnic, Cultural, and Regional Differences; Cultural Planning, Development, and Economics; Urban Revitalization and the Arts.
The online conference schedule can be found at http://stpa.culture.info. Anyone interested in attending this exciting event may contact the Conference Coordinator, Darren Flusche, at email@example.com.
Congratulations, NYU Wagner Class of '11! [Slide Show]
A highly spirited, good-humored and at times poignant NYU Wagner convocation ceremony filled the beautiful Brooklyn Academy of Music on May 17, including a keynote address delivered by visiting scholar, best-selling author, and astute social critic Irshad Manji.
Her subject was "moral courage," a matter she teaches at Wagner with great passion and insight. As part of her presentation, several students stood in the auditorium; their faces were beamed onto a jumbo screen and their voices were amplified as they explained to hundreds of asssembled classmates, friends and family members what the phrase "moral courage" means to each of them.
It was just one of many emotional and powerful moments as the more than 350 graduates cheered -- all of them poised to embark on the next step of their amazing careers in public service within and across sectors and disciplines.
In another twist on the standard graduation ceremony, three MPA graduates -- Nilbia Y. Coyote, Chesray L. Dolpha, and Kuo Jeng Yang -- greeted the audience with "Welcome" in dozens of languages that reflect the United Nations-like variety of native tongues embodied by Wagner's student body and its diverse global ties.
Ellen Schall, Wagner's dean, led the ceremonies, while New York University Provost David W. McClauglin offered words of welcome and praise, and Associate Dean and Professor Rogan Kersh recited the Athenian Oath. Faculty and student awards aplenty were yet another highlight of the day.
Congratulations to the Class of '11. Forward!
Conversation Starter: Mayor Bloomberg's Bid to Ban Soda Purchases with Food Stamps
Mayor Michael Bloomberg has long made it a paramount goal to rid New York City of unhealthful foods, and he recently asked the Federal government for permission to prohibit Food Stamp recipients from using stamps to buy soda and other sugared beverages in the city.
Supporters are cheering Bloomberg’s stance, saying he’s striking a blow for better dietary habits and ultimately lower public health costs and consequences such as obesity. But critics question the move, seeing it as an example of big government, even patronizing toward the poor.
Research can be a valuable guidepost for public officials. In 2009, after Mayor Bloomberg required restaurant franchises to put calories counts on their menus, NYU Wagner professors Rogan Kersh and Brian Elbel sought to measure the impact of the calorie labeling initiative on consumer habits at fast-food restaurants in low-income neighborhoods. Their survey of 1,156 adult found little direct evidence to support the Mayor’s view that the posting of calorie counts causes fast-food patrons to buy items containing fewer calories. Elbel’s and Kersh’s widely discussed study, published in the journal Health Affairs, emphasized that follow-up studies are needed to determine the value and effectiveness of menu labeling and other obesity-related policies.
Professor Elbel describes the Mayor’s current proposal to prohibit the use of food stamps for the purchase of soda and sugary drinks as “an extremely innovative policy approach to tackle the complicated and multifaceted problem of obesity. It deserves a rigorous assessment, to evaluate its overall impact on healthy food choice and obesity,” says Professor Elbel, assistant professor of medicine and health policy. “The rest of the nation can then learn from the New York City experience as these and other policies to fight obesity are considered across the country.”
What’s your opinion of the Mayor’s food stamp initiative? Is it good public policy? Or should it just be allowed to fizzle out? Visit Wagner’s Public Service Today blog to post your comment today.
David Sandman, Ph.D., Named President and CEO of New York State Health Foundation
"David's experience and expertise in the world of New York health care, public policy, and in philanthropy position him perfectly to lead NYSHealth in its next chapter," said Ellen Rautenberg, Chair of the Foundation's Board of Directors. "His passion for our work is palpable, and he balances that with the patience and pragmatism required to effect meaningful social change."
Dr. Sandman said he was honored to be chosen. "In its first 10 years, the Foundation has established itself as a vital player working to help New Yorkers stay healthy and ensure our health care system meets patients' needs," he said. "I look forward to building on that work, focusing our energy in these important areas, and being responsive to new opportunities."
Dr. Sandman will begin his new role effective March 1, 2016, following the departure of founding President and CEO James R. Knickman, Ph.D., who is joining the faculty of New York University, where he will have a joint appointment in NYU Wagner and the NYU Langone Medical Center's Department of Population Health. Dr. Knickman will hold the Robert Derzon Chair in Health and Public Service.
"All of us on the NYSHealth Board are grateful to Jim Knickman for his leadership of the organization since its inception," said Ms. Rautenberg. "He shaped the Foundation into a strong force in New York's health landscape that has made a meaningful difference for the health and wellbeing of New Yorkers."
Dean Sherry Glied Writes on Data Access @ APPAM.org
Sherry Glied, Dean and Professor of Public Service at NYU Wagner, has published an essay entitled "Data and the Quest for Available Access" on the website of APPAM, the Association for Public Policy Analysis & Management.
As she writes, "Making data more readily available, so that researchers can better evaluate and assess programs, will require governments spend time and money." Read on.