International Affairs
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University of Tokyo, UC Berkeley to exchange scholars in cosmology, other areas
The University of Tokyo and the University of California, Berkeley, formalized an agreement Dec. 17 to encourage research and educational exchanges between the campuses, which are considered to be the top public universities in the world.
(18 December)

Climate change could boost incidence of civil war in Africa, study finds
Climate change could increase the likelihood of civil war in sub-Saharan Africa by over 50 percent within the next two decades, according to a new study led by a team of researchers at University of California, Berkeley, and published in today’s (Monday, Nov. 23) online issue of the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS).The study, conducted by researchers at UC Berkeley as well as at Stanford University, New York University and Harvard University, provides the first quantitative evidence linking climate change and the risk of civil conflict. It concludes by urging accelerated support by African governments and foreign aid donors for new and/or expanded policies to assist with African adaptation to climate change.
(23 November)

Cambodian opposition leader Mu Sochua speaks of government repression at home
"We cannot accept democracy fed to us by the teaspoon; we want full democracy," a Cambodian parliamentary opposition leader, Mu Sochua '81, told an audience at Berkeley in a brief and impassioned talk Sept 14.
(16 September)

The Human Rights Center at 15
Applying a raft of interdisciplinary tools and approaches to the messy reality of the international human-rights movement, the HRC serves as a bridge between academia and the practitioners and activists in the field.
(10 September)

Scholars protest repression of colleagues in Honduras
In an online petition spearheaded by Rosemary Joyce, chair of anthropology at Berkeley, scholars and academics across the country are urging the U.S. government to sanction the de facto regime for "escalated violence directed at our counterparts in universities and research centers in Honduras." Joyce has also launched a blog — offering English-language translations of commentary from Honduras — in the wake of the June 28 ouster of President Zelaya.
(25 August)

Huge wage cost to filling gap in sub-Saharan Africa's health workforce, study projects
Hiring the workers needed to eliminate the staggering shortage of health care professionals in sub-Saharan Africa by 2015 will cost $2.6 billion a year, or 2.5 times the annual funds currently allocated for health worker wages in the region, according to a new study led by UC Berkeley researchers.
(06 August)

Two Berkeley alums are reportedly detained by Iran
Two of the three hikers reportedly detained by the Iranian government last week are former UC Berkeley students who have been working as journalists in the Middle East and Africa. They are Shane Bauer, a 2007 honors graduate in peace and conflict studies, and Sarah Emily Shourd, 30, who graduated in 2003 with a B.A. in English.
(03 August)

Simon Karlinsky, scholar of Russian classic and émigré literature, dies at 84
Simon Karlinsky, a University of California, Berkeley, professor of Slavic languages and literature and a pioneering scholar of Russian classic and émigré literature, died in his Berkeley home on July 5 of congestive heart failure. He was 84.
(28 July)

Shinnyo-en Foundation names chancellor a 2009 "Pathfinder to Peace"
University of California, Berkeley, Chancellor Robert Birgeneau is one of three recipients of the Shinnyo-en Foundation's 2009 Pathfinders to Peace Prize issued today (Monday, June 22) by the Shinnyo-en Foundation during ceremonies in San Francisco.
(22 June)

Dalai Lama: Creating a peaceful 21st century will take all 6 billion of us
Whether history remembers the 21st century as happy or unhappy "is in your hands," the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso, told the students at UC Berkeley campus appearance.
(27 April)

Dalai Lama speaks on peace at UC Berkeley's Greek Theatre
The Dalai Lama made his third visit to UC Berkeley on Saturday, April 25. His Holiness made a special appeal to students to help put an end to war, saying that peace begins with "personal disarmament."
(25 April)

An impatient man, a hopeful moment
At the April 23 groundbreaking for the Richard C. Blum Center for Developing Economies' new campus home, Al Gore paid tribute to its founder and, especially, to the students whose engagement gives the center such promise to aid the world's poor.
(24 April)

Black-leather pragmatist
Russia today, under Vladimir Putin, is neither autocratic nor imperialistic, Communist nor democratic, says an emeritus professor of political science. The good news? Things could be a lot worse… for the Russian people in particular.
(23 April)

Veteran journalist says schools and hospitals, not missile attacks, can defeat al Qaeda
Only a handful of journalists operate in the border region between Afghanistan and Pakistan. One of them told a campus audience last week how the U.S. might better conduct its campaign against Islamic extremists there.
(09 April)

Illegal drug trade has left deep scars on Mexican culture, says renowned journalist
Mexico's thriving drug trade has produced not only a wave of increasingly shocking violence but a durable imprint on the culture, the renowned Latin American reporter Alma Guillermoprieto told a campus audience.
(23 March)

Guantánamo detainees confirm 'arbitrary and humiliating' treatment by U.S. guards
A new study based on extensive interviews with former detainees at the U.S.-run prison in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, confirms that the abuses they suffered there were not only "cruel, humiliating, and degrading" — in the words of the study's authors — but "clearly [rose] to the level of torture."
(20 November)

New report details shattered lives of released Guantanamo detainees
Detainees released from U.S. detention in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, and Afghanistan live shattered lives as a result of U.S. policies in the war on terror, according to a new report by human rights experts at UC Berkeley.
(12 November)

Advice for the next president: Talk frankly about the limits of U.S. power
The next president must talk frankly about the limits of U.S. power, not be engulfed by outdated ideas and the chattering class, and confront problems like climate, terrorism, and nuclear proliferation that require multilateral solutions, says Harry Kreisler, executive director of UC Berkeley's Institute of International Studies.
(08 October)

Modern China is fractured and contradictory, says journalist
With more than a billion people of many ethnicities — whose most striking shared quality is an aversion to following rules — it's difficult to speak of one China, journalist James Fallows told an audience at UC Berkeley on Sept. 25.
(29 September)

Student recalls daily life with an Iraq War ER unit
Cleavon Gilman, a UC Berkeley undergrad, dreamed of "action," possibly even killing a person, when he deployed to Iraq. He indeed saw blood, lots of it, during his tour of duty, though not on the terms he expected, he told a spellbound audience at UC Berkeley Sept. 19. The Cal transfer student spoke at a day-long teach-in on the Iraq war and lessons to be drawn from the Vietnam War era.
(22 September)

Revisiting the human-rights horror in Cambodia
It’s taken this long to bring just five likely Khmer Rouge killers before a tribunal. Wouldn’t it be easier simply to ‘bury the past’ and move on? Sophal Ear isn’t sure
(18 September)

Teach-in on the Iraq War to be held at UC Berkeley Sept. 19
Iraq War veteran Cleavon Gilman, who is a UC Berkeley undergrad, and pacifist Vietnam War vet Brian Willson will share a stage at a teach-in on the Iraq War to be held at UC Berkeley on Friday, Sept. 19, 2008. The vets will offer personal perspectives on two U.S. wars separated by four decades.
(18 September)

The second-class workers behind China's urban construction boom
Behind the rapid modernization of China, powerfully symbolized by the architectural wonders of the Beijing Olympics, are millions of migrant construction laborers from rural villages, working for low wages and outside the protection of Chinese labor laws.
(14 August)

Q&A: Professor M. Steve Fish comments on Russian-Georgian conflict
With tensions still mounting in the continuing violent conflict between Russia and Georgia, UC Berkeley political science professor M. Steven Fish fields questions about the prospects for peace in the region and impact on the conflict of U.S. presidential politics.
(13 August)

Bringing 'tools of the west' to sub-Saharan healthcare
"Compassion" and "computer networking" rarely appear in the same sentence. But they coexist easily for grad student Melissa Ho, whose networking innovations in developing nations have brought her the "Foundations of Change" Thomas I. Yamashita Award.
(24 June)

An alliance for green prosperity?
On a visit to Berkeley and LBNL this week, Chilean President Michelle Bachelet emphasized the value of collaboration between her nation and the state of California as she sought solutions to one of Chile's most pressing challenge: how to provide its own energy.
(13 June)

CITRIS co-sponsors Copenhagen climate and energy conference as lead-in to 2009 UN meeting
On Thursday, June 19, some 250 of the world's leading climate and energy researchers, industry representatives and government leaders will convene in Denmark for an international research summit co-sponsored by the Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS) at UC Berkeley in partnership with the Copenhagen Climate Council. The conference, organized at the request of the Danish government, aims to identify the critical research and development achievements necessary for a successful transition to a low carbon economy.
(13 June)

After the storm in Burma
Human Rights Center Director Eric Stover, who makes a career of flying into the teeth of tragedy, arrived in Burma — by coincidence — the day after Cyclone Nargis struck last month. During his two weeks in the country, he saw not only the impacts of the deadly cyclone itself, but the ways in which 45 years of military rule are exacerbating the crisis.
(12 June)

Chilean president to talk about new Chilean-California pact
Chilean President Michelle Bachelet will speak at the University of California, Berkeley, this Thursday (June 12) at 5 p.m. on the challenges facing her country and the impacts of a new agreement between Chile and the state of California.
(09 June)

Berkeley researchers go global to document endangered languages
As the "Breath of Life" conference on California Indian language revitalization gets underway on June 8 on campus, UC Berkeley faculty and student linguists are fanning out around the globe to research and document other often endangered languages.
(06 June)

Q&A: Raj Patel talks about the food crisis
A visiting scholar at UC Berkeley's Center for African Studies, Raj Patel shares insights on the global food crisis. Patel authored the newly released book "Stuffed and Starved: The Hidden Battle for the World Food System."
(21 May)

Games aside, the real Olympic challenge is engaging with China
As activists excoriate the nation's rulers over human-rights issues, a campus symposium makes the case for a less confrontational attitude toward Beijing.
(08 May)

More focus needed for effective HIV prevention strategies in Africa, says new policy paper
A new policy analysis led by public health researchers at UC Berkeley and Harvard University says that the most common HIV prevention strategies - including condom use, HIV testing, vaccine research and abstinence - are not backed by rigorous studies and are having limited impact on the epidemic in Africa. More resources are needed for two less popular interventions - male circumcision and reduction of sexual partners - that have been proven effective in Africa, the researchers argue.
(08 May)

Clean energy plans dominate 2008 Global Social Venture Competition
A plan to make clean energy affordable around the world to poor, rural households without access to electricity won the grand prize of the 2008 Global Social Venture Competition at the University of California, Berkeley's Haas School of Business.
(23 April)

Panel to explore U.S. universities' role in global development
The role that U.S. universities play in global development will be addressed in a panel discussion on Thursday, April 17, as part of the official launch of UC Berkeley's new Center for Evaluation for Global Action (CEGA).
(16 April)

Student viewpoints on China, the Olympics, and the protests
Six UC Berkeley undergraduates share their thoughts on China's hosting of the 2008 Summer Games and the protests accompanying the journey of the Olympic torch to Beijing.
(10 April)

Raising the profile of immigration studies
"Human history has always been about migration," says sociologist Irene Bloemraad, "but with ever-increasing globalization, the 21st century will be a century of people on the move." Over the past five years, she has worked to raise the profile of immigration studies at UC Berkeley, where a remarkable two thirds of students are foreign born or have at least one foreign-born parent.
(19 March)

Understanding the Middle East, or not
On the eve of the fifth anniversary of the Iraq invasion, a retired commander of U.S. forces in the Middle East shared this year's Nimitz lectures with the former head of the CIA's bin Laden desk. But where Gen. John Abizaid said we're on the right track in the "war on terror," Michael Scheuer said we've got it all wrong.

(19 March)

Art student portrays fallen U.S. troops as Iraq War approaches five-year mark
For graduate student Emily Prince, who's been drawing portraits of U.S. troop fatalities for more than three years, the Iraq War's fifth anniversary is a deeply felt milestone.
(17 March)

C.V. Starr East Asian Library to open March 17
The University of California, Berkeley's new C.V. Starr East Asian Library - the first freestanding structure at a United States university erected solely for East Asian collections - will open its stately bronze doors to the public on Monday, March 17.
(14 March)

New analysis finds alarming increase in expected growth of China CO2 emissions
The growth in China's carbon dioxide emissions is far outpacing the previously expected trajectory for the country, making the goal of stabilizing atmospheric greenhouse gases even more difficult, according to a new analysis by economists at UC Berkeley and UC San Diego.
(10 March)

New digital projects teach English in India, monitor air pollution
An online mystery game in which student sleuths will monitor air pollution in South Central Los Angeles and in Cairo, Egypt, and a project using cell phones to teach English to children in India have won funding for two University of California, Berkeley, professors.
(25 February)

New Asia business center to bolster UC Berkeley's offerings in Asia
The University of California, Berkeley's Haas School of Business is launching a new center focused on significantly increasing the school's leadership training for Asian business managers and on expanding its research collaborations with Asian universities, Dean Tom Campbell announced today (Tuesday, Feb. 19).
(20 February)

General says Abu Ghraib scandal will resonate ‘for years to come’
In a rare public appearance last week at International House, Antonio Taguba said revelations about abuse at the now-notorious Baghdad prison “affected the moral and ethical conscience of our nation,” and blamed U.S. leaders for what he called "the ambiguity of rules of war."
(13 February)