Public Policy Lecture Series

Fall 2008

Changing of the Guard in 2009: Public Policy and the 2008 Election

The 2008 Public Policy Lecture Series is pleased to bring to Reed College a set of speakers who will address the policy consequences of the 2008 election. Each is a nationally known leader in his or her field, and each has already had a major impact on shaping the debate during the campaign. These speakers will come to Portland in the closing stages of the 2008 contest to help students, faculty, and community members sort out the claims and counterclaims of the candidates, sift the wheat from the chaff, and help us think about how politics might change under a new president.

spencer overtonSpencer Overton
“Changing Democracy: The Challenges in November and the Possibilities for Reform in 2009”

Thursday, September 18, 7:30 p.m., Vollum lecture hall

Author of Stealing Democracy: The New Politics of Voter Suppression (2006), professor Overton was a member of the Carter-Baker Commission on Federal Election Reform and dissented with the commission on the topic of voter identification standards for voters. His work has been published frequently in a wide array of law journals. He is an editorial board member
of the Election Law Journal.

Sponsored by the Elizabeth C. Ducey Political Science Lecture Fund.


austan goolsbeeAustan Goolsbee
“America’s Economic Agenda”

Thursday, September 25, 7:30 p.m., Vollum lecture hall

Professor Goolsbee, a Fulbright scholar in 2006, is presidential candidate Barack Obama’s lead economic adviser. He has worked with Senator Obama since his successful U.S. Senate campaign in Illinois. He also serves as a research associate at the National Bureau of Economic Research, as a research fellow at the American Bar Foundation, and as a columnist for the New York Times. Professor Goolsbee’s research focuses on the internet, investment, and taxation.

The lecture is sponsored by the Walter Krause Economics Lecture Fund and the Elizabeth C. Ducey Political Science lecture fund.


caitlin baggottCaitlin Baggott ’99
“Utopian and Dystopian Visions of Youth Citizenship: Will the Next Generation Stand for Change?”

Thursday, October 2, 7:30 p.m., Eliot Hall chapel

Baggott is a recognized innovator in youth civic engagement efforts. She and her colleagues started the Oregon Bus Project in 2001 with an idea to “engage, educate, and elect” by creating forums for discussing current political issues, encouraging voter registration, and inspiring a lifelong commitment to social change. She was a contributor and guiding force behind Zephyr, a news website.

Sponsored by the Mildred Twohy Benezet Memorial Lecture Fund.


howard wolpeHoward Wolpe ’60
“Democracy and Peacebuilding: Rethinking the Conventional Wisdom”

Thursday, October 16, 7:30 p.m., Vollum lecture hall

Wolpe, a former seven-term congressman from Michigan’s third district, served as chairman of the Subcommittee on Africa in the House Foreign Affairs Committee for 10 years. While in Congress, Wolpe was a leading congressional opponent of apartheid. He was the co-author of several key pieces of legislation, including the Pollution Prevention Act, the Industrial Process Efficiency Act, and the Taxpayer Right to Know Act. After leaving Congress in 1993, Wolpe was appointed Special Envoy to the African Great Lakes Region by President Clinton, leading the American delegation to the peace talks in Burundi.

Sponsored by the Munk-Darling Lecture Fund in International Relations.


jacob hackerJacob Hacker
“The Middle Class at Risk: Rising Economic Insecurity and the Future of American Politics”

Thursday, October 30, 7:30 p.m., Vollum lecture hall

Professor Hacker is a well-known scholar of health care in the United States and of what he calls “privatization of risk.” His most recent books are The Great Risk Shift (2008) and Off Center (2006), with Paul Pierson. Professor Hacker is also the author of The Road to Nowhere: The Genesis of President Clinton’s Plan for Health Security (1997), which was co-winner of the 1997 Louis Brownlow Book Award of the National Academy of Public Administration, and The Divided Welfare State: The Battle over Public and Private Social Benefits in the United States (2002). As a dissertation, the latter received prizes from the American Political Science Association, the Association of Public Policy Analysis and Management, and the National Academy of Social Insurance.

Sponsored by the Elizabeth C. Ducey Political Science Lecture Fund.


Post-election PanelPost-election Panel

2 p.m., Saturday, November 8, Vollum lecture hall

With both Republicans and Democrats adopting the mantle of “change,” the 2008 presidential contest is shaping up to be one of the most consequential of the past half-century.

Join Paul Gronke, Reed College political science professor and director of the Early Voting Information Center, Caroline Tolbert of the University of Iowa, and Robert Eisinger of Lewis & Clark College for a panel discussion on the campaigns, the results, and the election’s lasting implications.

Presented in conjunction with Parent & Family Weekend. Reception to follow.