Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs comprises more than 70 full-time faculty and more than 200 adjunct faculty, scholars, and practitioners. All have distinguished themselves in research and leadership in the policy world, and have produced scholarship in a wide variety of subjects, including international relations, democratization, elections, demography, and social policy.

March 2018|Alexander Hertel-Fernandez

Employers are increasingly recruiting their workers into politics to change elections and public policy-sometimes in coercive ways. Using a diverse array of evidence, including national surveys of workers and employers, as well as in-depth interviews with top corporate managers, Alexander Hertel-Fernandez's Politics at Work explains why mobilization of workers has become an appealing corporate political strategy in recent decades. The book also assesses the effect of employer mobilization on the political process more broadly, including its consequences for electoral contests, policy debates, and political representation. 

Hertel-Fernandez shows that while employer political recruitment has some benefits for American democracy-for instance, getting more workers to the polls-it also has troubling implications for our democratic system. Workers face considerable pressure to respond to their managers' political requests because of the economic power employers possess over workers. In spite of these worrisome patterns, Hertel-Fernandez found that corporate managers view the mobilization of their own workers as an important strategy for influencing politics. As he shows, companies consider mobilization of their workers to be even more effective at changing public policy than making campaign contributions or buying electoral ads. 

Hertel-Fernandez closes with an array of solutions that could protect workers from employer political coercion and could also win the support of majorities of Americans. By carefully examining a growing yet underappreciated political practice, Politics at Work contributes to our understanding of the changing workplace, as well as the increasing power of corporations in American politics. It is essential reading for anyone interested in the connections between inequality, public policy, and American democracy.

February 2018|Health Systems & Reform|Lisa Tarantino, C. James Hospedales
January 2018|American Economic Journal: Applied Economics|Rodrigo Soares, Rafael Dix-Carneiro, Gabriel Ulyssea

Economic Shocks and Crime: Evidence from the Brazilian Trade Liberalization

January 2018|Urban Disasters|Dale Buscher

Refugees in the City: Promoting Resilience and Restoring Dignity

December 2017|Open Society Foundations|Anya Schiffrin, Beatrice Santa-Wood, Susanna De Martino, Nicole Pope, Ellen Hume

Journalists in many countries are experimenting with how to build trust and engage with audiences, and our report examines their efforts. In our study, Bridging the Gap: Rebuilding Citizen Trust in the Media, commissioned by the Open Society Foundation’s Program on Independent Journalism, we profile organizations that are working to build bridges with their readers, viewers and listeners and deliver relevant news to local audiences.

We surveyed 17 organizations and conducted interviews with representatives of 15 organizations, one of which chose to remain anonymous. Among others we spoke to Chequeado in Argentina, GroundUp in South Africa, Raseef 22 in the Middle East, 263 Chat in Zimbabwe, Krautreporter and Correct!v in Germany, as well as Bristol Cable in the UK. The report also includes an annotated bibliography of academic studies on media trust and media literacy and a list of ongoing initiatives as well as sidebars on past efforts to boost media credibility.

December 2017|Financial Times|Nobuchika Mori

Too much medicine could make the system sicker

November 2017|Jacana Press|Anya Schiffrin, George Lugalambi

African Muckraking is the first collection of investigative and campaigning journalism written by Africans about Africa. The editors delved into the history of modern Africa to find the most important and compelling pieces of journalism on the most important stories of their day. This collection of 41 pieces includes passionate writing on labor abuses, police brutality, women’s rights, the struggle for democracy and independence on the continent and other subjects.

Each piece of writing features an introduction by a noted scholar or journalist that provides context around a story’s writing and an account of the story’s impact. Some highlights include feminist writing from Tunisia into the 1930s, exposés of the secret tactics planned by the South African government during apartheid, Richard Mgamba’s searing description of the albino brothers in Tanzania who fear for their lives and the reporting by Liberian journalist Mae Azango on genital cutting, which forced her to go into hiding. Many of the African Muckrakers featured in the book have been imprisoned and even killed for their work. African Muckraking is a must-read for anyone who cares about journalism and Africa.