Sun 26 May | Associated Press

Affleck Gets Honorary Doctorate From Brown

AAcdemy Award-winning actor and director Ben Affleck has received one of six honorary doctorate degrees from Brown UUniversity. Affleck was among artists, writers, scientists and educators to receive the degrees from the Ivy League school at commencement exercises Sunday. He received a doctor of fine arts degree. 
Sat 25 May | The Providence Journal

Your Neighbors

Three Brown University professors  - David Cane, Rose McDermott and Walter Strauss - have been elected to membership in the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and will be inducted at a ceremony at the academy’s headquarters in Cambridge, Mass., on Oct. 12.
Sat 25 May | The Providence Journal

How the brain adapts with age

Dima Amso, assistant professor of cognitive, linguistic and psychological sciences, comments on how learning becomes more difficult with age. “It could be that plasticity is something that decreases over time,” Amso says. “But here’s the flip side: It could also be that … your brain becomes entrenched in what you learn so much that it’s hard to override that.”
Sat 25 May | The Providence Journal

Getting ready for commencement

A photo of Brown University students Alexx Temena and Kenya Wright placing name tags on tables Friday in preparation for the campus dance. 
Fri 24 May | WPRO

SPOTLIGHT: Brown grad turns thesis into thriving business

Capital Good Fund is the brainchild of Andy Posner, a Brown University graduate who matriculated to Providence from his home in Los Angeles. In 2008, just when the recession hit hardest, Posner was getting set to graduate. So Posner wrote his master’s thesis on what turned into the business plan for Capital Good Fund (CGF), which officially launched in 2009. 
Fri 24 May | The Boston Globe

Cure for distracted mind: Stare at a painting

Cathy Kerr, assistant professor of family medicine, is quoted in this article on how technology may be affecting mental focus, saying that studies indicate that we don’t stick with one activity for as long as we did in the past, and it’s likely causing subtle brain changes. Kerr suggests meditation as a way to possibly counteract some of those affects. 
Fri 24 May | MSN

Soaring ER use adds more pain to health costs

Michael Lee, assistant professor of emergency medicine, comments on new research that finds that increasing hospital admissions through the ER are raising healthcare costs: "The ER has become increasingly important as a place where people go for acute unscheduled care...However, there has been little rigorous analysis of its cost structure."
Fri 24 May | Associated Press

Brown trustees want 'robust response' on climate

 Members of Brown University’s governing body have asked the school to develop a ‘‘robust response’’ to climate change but taken no action on a recommendation that it divest from coal companies during its annual meeting on Thursday and Friday. On Friday, President Christina Paxson said the university has long been committed to environmental sustainability and will work with students on the issue of divestment.
Fri 24 May |

Brown University Corporation Elects 12 New Members

At its business meeting this morning (Friday, May 24, 2013), the Corporation of Brown University elected two new members of its Board of Fellows and ten new members of its Board of Trustees. The Corporation also formally accepted gifts to the University totaling more than $38 million and appointed 13 faculty members to named chairs.
Thu 23 May | Bloomberg

Nigerian Writer Chinua Achebe Buried as President Pays Tribute

Nigerian writer Chinua Achebe, whose novel “Things Fall Apart” is one of the most-read books by an African author, was buried today in his hometown of Ogidi in the country’s southeast. Achebe, who died in Boston on March 21 at the age of 82, was lowered into his grave with tens of thousands in attendance, including Nigeria President Goodluck Jonathan and Ghana’s President John Mahama.
Thu 23 May | The Atlantic

Race Is Not Biology

An article on the belief within the scientific community in biological "races," that between races, differences exist that are grounded in the biological characteristics of the races themselves, cites recent research co-authored by Lundy Braun, professor of medicine science, as one critique of this belief. That paper reviewed the degree to which common conceptions of race have in fact historically shaped by administrative imperatives in medicine and issues a warning on the use of race as a proxy.
Wed 22 May | Science 360

CreatureCast: The Resurrection Fern

In today's Science 360 featured video. Rebecca Haumann, from Erika Edwards' Plant Diversity course at Brown University, describes how different plants cope with drying out.
Wed 22 May | Wilmington Star News

Smell: The underrated sense

Rachel Herz, adjunct assistant professor of psychiatry and human behavior, comments on how smell can influence people's attraction to one another, in this article on the science behind smell. “If a woman does not like how a man smells, it is a visceral barrier to being intimate,” Herz says. 
Tue 21 May | Associated Press

Brown students to address board on divestment

Members of the Brown Divest Coal Campaign, which is pushing for the school to divest from coal companies, said they have been invited to speak Thursday during the first day of the Corporation’s annual two-day May meeting. 
Mon 20 May | RI NPR

A Year of Future Docs, In One Documentary

RI NPR is wrapping up its year-long "Future Docs" segment with an hour-long documentary about the crucible of medical school, set against the backdrop of some of the most dramatic changes in health care in a generation. Listen to the full hour or individual segments at the link. 
Mon 20 May | The New Yorker

Why is Europe so Messed Up? An Illuminating History

In a column on Europe's ongoing economic crisis, John Cassidy references Mark Blyth's new book to answer the question of why Europe continues to enact austerity measures, despite the tactic being "discredited in the nineteen-twenties and thirties."
Mon 20 May | The Washington Post

The ancient Maya meet the modern Internet

Stephen Houston, professor of anthropology, comments on how the Internet is helping researchers write the history of Mayan civilization. "The Web log gets ideas out quickly, which is very appealing,” said Houston. “You don’t have to wait two years for publication. You want to lay claim to a new idea and get it noticed by colleagues.”
Mon 20 May | Psychology Today

Childhood ADHD Linked to Obesity in Adulthood

An article on a new study that found that men diagnosed with ADHD as children were twice as likely to become obese as adults, cites research out of Brown that found that obesity impedes the production of a hormone that curbs appetite and inspires calorie burning.
Sun 19 May | New Zealand Radio International

US Study links child obesity with infant milk formula

Stephen McGarvey, professor of epidemiology, is studying the feeding patterns of Samoan babies and the effect it has as the child grows.McGarvey says a previous study showed children who put on the most weight for their body length, had been fed with formula milk as infants, and cautions that if this pattern continues, the children will become overweight as they enter kindergarten age.
Sat 18 May | The New York Times

The Health Toll of Immigration

An article on the health patterns of both Hispanic immigrants and American-born Hispanics cites 2001 research from Andrew Fenelon that found that half of the three-year life expectancy advantage that Hispanic immigrants had over American-born Hispanics was because they smoked less. 
Sat 18 May | The Providence Journal

Seeking the Formula at Brown

Every year, Brown’s Formula Society of Automotive Engineers team prepares for a competition in Michigan, where they present and race their car against entries from 119 other schools.  They build the racecar from scratch, except for a few major components like the engine and tires, an engineering feat that requires a vast base of knowledge, tens of thousands of dollars, and tremendous creativity and hard work.
Fri 17 May | National Geographic

Emerging Explorers

Chad Jenkins, associate professor of computer science, has been selected as one of this year’s National Geographic Emerging Explorers. The program recognizes and supports uniquely gifted and inspiring young adventurers, scientists, photographers, and storytellers—explorers who are already making a difference early in their careers. To help the Emerging Explorers realize their potential, National Geographic awards each of them $10,000 for research and exploration.
Fri 17 May | Marketplace

Fed may ease off on stimulus

President of the San Francisco Federal Reserve John Williams made headlines when he speculated that the Fed may reduce its stimulus efforts in the coming months. David Wyss, adjunct professor of economics and international relations, explains whether or not Williams' comments should be interpreted as optimism about the economy.
Thu 16 May | The Providence Journal

Brown stands by decision to give its officers guns

Seven years after Brown University became the first college in the state to equip its campus police with guns, Russell Carey, executive vice president for planning and policy, says it’s unlikely the school will reverse that policy anytime soon, given it has allowed its police to catch more perpetrators.
Thu 16 May | NPR

Ivy Leaguers Broaden Minds With New Race Center

Tricia Rose, professor of Africana studies, talks with Michel Martin about her new role as director of the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America, her vision for the Center and how she hopes it will spark new questions about race and ethnicity. 
Wed 15 May | The Providence Journal

Jewelry startup Haverhill Inc. wins business plan cash prize

Azavy, a business plan led by Brown senior Tyler Benster, won the student track in last night's RI Business Plan Competition Finals, earning the team $15,000 in cash and services valued at $24,000. Azavy is an online store that connects people and organizations that own 3D printers with consumers who want to buy products designed and printed on them.