How Could Less Red Tape Make Societies More Equal? | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian
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How Could Less Red Tape Make Societies More Equal?

To merely open a bank account or secure a driver’s license, people around the world face one common barrier: paperwork. Americans, in fact, spend 11.4 billion hours a year on federal paperwork alone. Harvard legal scholar Cass R. Sunstein, former administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, has a name for this kind of drudgery: sludge. …

Can California Help America Reduce Gun Violence? | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian
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Can California Help America Reduce Gun Violence?

The United States has more firearms (390 million) than people (325 million), routinely experiences mass shootings, and suffers rates of gun violence far higher than other wealthy countries. California has touted itself as a safer model, with the most gun regulations in the country, the 44th lowest rate of gun violence among the 50 states, and a 9 percent decrease …

Is Cutthroat Science Hindering Discovery? | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian
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Is Cutthroat Science Hindering Discovery?

Laboratories around the world are under fire for their lack of diversity, a culture of harassment and bullying, rigid hierarchies, and research that cannot be reproduced. Is the entire research system to blame? Our model of funding individual scientists encourages cutthroat competition rather than a cooperative infrastructure better tailored to solving our biggest problems. In a recent article for Issues …

| Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian
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Is South L.A. Forging a New American Identity?

South Los Angeles, one of the West Coast’s last great working-class places, has been a destination point for two great migrations: African Americans arriving from the South and East, and, more recently, Latin Americans immigrating to Southern California. While media have long dwelled on examples of interracial and interethnic conflict there, the everyday reality of South L.A.’s ever-changing neighborhoods has …

How Have Women’s Sports Changed Since Title IX? | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian
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How Have Women’s Sports Changed Since Title IX?

When Gertrude Ederle became the first woman to swim the English Channel in 1926, she beat the record of every man who’d attempted it before her—by two hours. And she did it in a two-piece bathing suit that she’d fashioned herself, eschewing the bulky wool dress, stockings, and shoes expected to be worn by women swimmers for modesty’s sake. Before …

What Makes A Good Small Town? | Zocalo Public Square • Arizona State University • Smithsonian
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What Makes A Good Small Town?

California’s smaller cities are pitied, when they’re thought about at all. Media coverage of towns, especially in rural areas, emphasize their poverty, their lack of amenities and people, or their supposedly clannish cultures or peripheral politics. But the reality is that small towns stand at the center of California’s biggest challenges—climate, energy, inequality, public health, education, water, broadband access, and …