April 29, 2019
Organizing for the Equal Rights Amendment the first time round, in 1972-82, tapped the strengths and experienced the weaknesses of social movements in general. The strengths of social movements derive from their “hydra-headed” qualities: the activists bubble up from many different arenas, giving the movement great flexibility, adaptability, diversity, and intelligence. The weaknesses derive from their relative absence of selective incentives, so that the motivation for activism is primarily ideological commitment. That commitment in turn, creates a “dynamic of deafness,” in which activists are unlikely to listen and learn from their opposition. In this seminar, Jane Mansbridge discusses how the current organizing effort has learned in different ways from the past.
Jane Mansbridge, Adams Professor of Political Leadership and Democratic Values, Harvard Kennedy School
April 29, 2019
Millions of people disclosed sexual harassment and violence against them following the #MeToo breakthrough in October 2017. Despite the fact that advocates, individuals and the government had been taking action to address sexual harassment, it remains a widespread problem that prevents employees from reaching their full potential. Monica Ramirez, a national recognized expert on ending workplace sexual violence and the author of the Dear Sisters letter that helped spark the TIMES UP movement, will discuss the policy measures, as well as the employment and societal norms that must be addressed to meaningfully address this problem.
Monica Ramirez, MC/MPA 2015, Co-Founder and President, Alianza Nacional de Campesinas
April 29, 2019
Join us for an HKS Gender and Security Seminar Series event featuring Theresia Thylin, PhD Candidate in the Essex University (UK) Department of Sociology and a Gender and Humanitarian Specialist at the United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) in New York. Chelsea Green, PhD candidate in the Harvard Department of Government, will serve as a discussant. This event is organized by Dara Kay Cohen, Ford Foundation Associate Professor of Public Policy, and Zoe Marks, Lecturer in Public Policy.
October 12, 2017
In this seminar, Jia Xue discusses the current state of domestic violence law in China. In particular, she focuses on how this social issue transfers into a policy agenda. Jia draws on findings from her current project, which examines the use of social media in the context of intimate partner violence in China. Additionally, she introduces another project investigating the impact of intimate partner violence on mental health through the examination of Weibo messages (Chinese version of Twitter).
Jia Xue, Ph.D. Candidate in Social Welfare, University of Pennsylvania. Fellow, Carr Center for Human Rights
February 16, 2017
While gender equity is a core value in public service, women continue to be underrepresented in the top-level of leadership of public sector organizations. Existing explanations for why more women do not advance to top leadership positions consider factors, such as human and social capital, gender stereotypes and beliefs about effective leadership, familial expectations, and work-life conflict. Such studies, largely based on private-sector organizations, focus on why women do not reach top leadership positions rather than trying to understand how, or why, some women do. In this seminar, Amy Smith discusses findings from a multi-method study examining career histories of women and men who have reached the top-level of leadership in U.S. federal regulatory organizations. Her analysis identifies a typology of career paths for women and men in public service. Amy finds that while both women and men assert personal and professional qualifications to legitimize their claims to top leadership positions, they do so in different, possibly gendered, ways.
Amy E. Smith, Associate Professor of Public Policy and Public Affairs, McCormack Graduate School of Policy and Global Studies, University of Massachusetts Boston
December 1, 2016
Across the world, the increasing use of digital payments for government to person transactions for social programs has provided an entry point for the world’s poor into the formal financial sector. This phenomenon begs the question: how can governments best leverage this opportunity to enable economic empowerment for women? This seminar explores research that uses a randomized controlled trial to assess how financial inclusion coupled with targeted benefit payments impact women's labor force participation and economic welfare in India.
Simone Schaner, Assistant Professor of Economics, Department of Economics, Dartmouth College
October 6, 2016
Historians have long suspected that Queen Victoria’s gender played a role in the rise of constitutional (e.g. ceremonial) monarchy in 19th-century Britain. But what was the nature of this role? In this seminar, Arianne Chernock takes on this question through an archival-based approach by exploring Victoria’s centrality to the early women’s rights movement in Britain – especially in inspiring women to demand the right to vote. Chernock argues that recognizing Victoria’s role in the women’s rights movement allows us to see the shift towards a more restricted Crown as an attempt to contain radical thinking about women, agency, and power to create a more democratic and transparent British state.
Speaker: Arianne Chernock, Associate Professor, Department of History, Boston University
September 15, 2016
In this seminar, the recent efforts by the Department of Education’s
Office of Civil Rights (OCR) to enforce Title IX policy are considered
in the broader context of unsuccessful attempts to establish protection
of sexual violence as a civil right in the United States. OCR
enforcement has stimulated both praise for its bold determination to
address an epidemic of sexual violence on college campuses and criticism
for its capacious exercise of administrative power. Bumiller reframes
this debate by considering how these regulatory measures are a new
chapter in a varied and complex story about the effectiveness of public
enforcement of civil rights statutes through the combination of
administrative and judicial action. Her work questions whether over
reliance on public agency enforcement potentially weakens the
participatory and democratic effects of private action. She also
examines how current federal regulations regarding Title IX continue a
pattern that over emphasizes criminal justice priorities.
Speaker: Kristin Bumiller, George Daniel Olds Professor in Economic and Social Institutions; Chair of Political Science, Amherst College
September 8, 2016
Rape is common during wartime, but even within the context of the same war, some armed groups perpetrate rape on a massive scale while others never do. In this seminar, Dara Kay Cohen discusses her new book, Rape during Civil War, and examines variation in the severity and perpetrators of rape using an original dataset of reported rape during all major civil wars from 1980 to 2012. Cohen also conducted extensive fieldwork, including interviews with perpetrators of wartime rape, in Sierra Leone, Timor-Leste and El Salvador. Combining evidence from these interviews with statistical analysis of the quantitative data, Cohen argues that armed groups that recruit their fighters through the random abduction of strangers use rape—and especially gang rape—to create bonds of loyalty and trust between soldiers. Results from the book lay the groundwork for the systematic analysis of an understudied form of civilian abuse, and will be useful to policymakers seeking to understand and to mitigate the horrors of wartime rape.
Speaker Dara Kay Cohen, WAPPP Faculty Affiliate; Assistant Professor of Public Policy, Harvard Kennedy School