Monthly Archives: December 2014

author’s colloquium on We are the Ones We Have Been Waiting For

As I prepare to take a 2-week winter break from blogging, I’ll post the video of me, Jane Mansbridge and Marshall Ganz of the Harvard Kennedy School, and Jenny Sazama, Director & Co-Founder of Youth on Board, talking about my … Continue reading

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questions about “collective impact”

The concept of “Collective Impact” suddenly seems to be everywhere. No meeting is complete without it. FSG defines it as “the commitment of a group of actors from different sectors to a common agenda for solving a complex social problem.” And … Continue reading

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Foucault and neoliberalism

If you’re intellectually and ideologically eclectic, then you will find important ideas all over the map. It will not surprise you to learn that a person generally associated with the left has benefited from F.O. von Hayek or Gary Becker: leading libertarians. … Continue reading

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what does Russia make?

In the waning days of Communism, it seemed as if all the Soviet Union made that anyone else wanted to purchase were Matryoshka doll sets. In reality, the USSR was exporting oil and natural gas. Drops in their market value … Continue reading

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Bernard Williams on truth as a virtue of the humanities

Bernard Williams (1929-2003) published Truth and Truthfulness in 2002, when the humanities were still processing criticisms of truth, objectivity, science, the Enlightenment, and related ideals that had arisen with postmodernism. Williams held his own complex epistemology; he certainly wasn’t interested … Continue reading

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questions for the social movement post Ferguson

(Washington, DC) The social ferment following the Ferguson verdict looks bigger to me than Occupy, and bigger than the other nascent US social movements that I can recall from personal experience, going back to the 1980s. That is a subjective … Continue reading

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journalism students fill the news gap on Miami’s sea level rise

Robert Gutsche reports that South Florida news outlets are not covering the rise of sea levels, even though they pose an existential threat to Miami and its environs. Partly as a result of the news silence, “civic and economic leaders … Continue reading

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pigeon-guided missiles and ancient Chinese paddleboat gunships

I read Wikipedia so that you don’t have to. You can just stop by here to learn that … 1. During WWII, the behaviorist psychologist B.F. Skinner put pigeons inside missiles. The view in front of each missile was projected … Continue reading

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Obama faces the new organizers

Peter Dreier has a great piece on President Obama’s background as a community organizer. The priceless photograph above comes from Dreier’s article. I also explore this aspect of the president’s past in We are the Ones We Have Been Waiting For, … Continue reading

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the Civic 50: companies that are civically engaged

Points of Light has released its list of 50 companies that are most civically engaged, the Civic50. The idea is to move beyond hours of voluntary service by employees to consider: 1. other forms of investment (such as cash, or paid … Continue reading

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