Researcher says juvenile offenders' brains not fully baked

September 2016

Elizabeth Cauffman, Professor of Psychology and Social Behavior, was interviewed on Maine Public radio after two teenage boys stole a front loader and led police on a low speed chase in West Gardiner, Maine. Cauffman researches the brain development of teenagers and young adults, many whom commit much more serious crimes than joyriding.

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UCI ranked 9th among nation’s public universities

September 2016

U.S. News & World Report has ranked the University of California, Irvine ninth among public universities nationwide in its 2017 Best Colleges report. The ranking is derived from 15 measures of academic excellence, weighted by relevance to high-quality education.

“To be in the top 10 once again is a fitting tribute to the outstanding work of our faculty, staff and students, who every day ensure that students of all backgrounds benefit from the very best research and teaching that American higher education has to offer,” said UCI Chancellor Howard Gillman. “This year, we are especially proud to be recognized for the work we do educating America’s veterans. It’s a privilege to serve those who have served this nation.”

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Photo credit: Eleana Zhukova

Fingerprint forensics has a future despite new technology and the folly of humans

September 2016

Simon Cole, Professor of Criminology, Law and Society, was quoted in DW.com in their article on fingerprint forensics.

From DW.com:

"The first study that looks anything like a validation study of latent prints was published in 2011," writes Simon A. Cole, professor of criminology and law at the University of California at Irvine, in an email to DW. "As you note, that is more than 100 years after the technique first started being used. Whether one study constitutes scientific validation is a more difficult question, but most people seem to think probably not."

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Rap music remains uniquely threatening

September 2016

The research of Professor Charis E. Kubrin, Associate Professor Nicholas Scurich and graduate student Adam Dunbar on "The Threatening Nature of "Rap" Music, was mentioned in Pacific Standard.

From Pacific Standard:

Take a quick read of these song lyrics:

Well, early one evening I was rollin’ around
I was feelin’ kind of mean. I shot a deputy down.
Strollin’ on home, and I went to bed.
Well, I laid my pistol up under my head.

UCI among top 10 "Cool Schools"

September 2016

Sierra magazine recently announced their “Cool Schools” ranking and the University of California, Irvine becomes the only campus to score in the top 10 for seven consecutive years. Finishing third this year on the strength of green energy and eco-friendly transportation programs, sustainability research, and related academic and co-curricular student activities, UCI is the highest-ranked comprehensive university and leading UC school on the list.

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Student delivers hope to hospital in homeland

September 2016

Lydia Natoolo, a student ambassador for UCI's Blum Center for Poverty Alleviation and UCI biology student, founded a non-profit, Love a Community. Through Love A Community clean running water and a steady supply of electricity supplied by solar panels was supplied to a hospital in Uganda, Natoolo's homeland. She now has set her sights on addressing the issue of chronic hunger, both among patients and the wider Atutur community. “Lydia is the exemplar of a student animated by ingenuity, passion and concern. By working with her, we are learning about how to support her incredible energy and sense of purpose, about how to make that connection between the immense resources of the university and the urgent needs of our society," said Richard Matthew, director of the UCI Blume Center for Poverty Alleviation and Professor of Planning, Policy and Design. We are hopeful that at some point we will be in a position to send students to Uganda through Love A Community’s efforts to work at a rural hospital,” said Carroll Seron, Professor of Criminology, Law and Society. “We think the work Lydia is doing is remarkable, and the opportunity to be involved in this would be wonderful for our students.”

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Photo credit: Craig Hung

 

Shooting scares show a nation quick to fear the worst

August 2016

Roxane Cohen Silver,  Professor of Psychology and Social Behavior, was quoted in the New York Times. Americans are on edge with recent mass shootings and fear the worse when they hear a loud bang or screams.

From the New York Times:

Social media feeds that kind of frenzy, said Roxane Cohen Silver.
“There’s rapid dissemination of information on social media that’s not being filtered by anybody,” she said. “This provides the unfortunate opportunity for rumors to be transmitted very quickly, without any ability to evaluate the veracity.”

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Activists protest imprisonment, potential deportation of undocumented grandmother

August 2016

Ana Muñiz, Assistant Professor of Criminology, Law and Society, was quoted in a CBS news article on the imprisonment and potential deportation of an undocumented grandmother who has been held in prison for months on allegations of gang involvement.

From CBS News:

"This is an illustrative case of how gang profiling criminalizes people based on where they live and who they know rather than what they do,” Muñiz said in a statement.

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MFI Webinar Replay Video

August 2016

In case you missed the Metropolitan Futures Initiative (MFI) webinar session, or you would like to watch it again, the replay video is now available.

The MFI Research Team presented further insight about the latest two quarterly reports released:


View Webinar Replay

 

Twitter shows promise in rapid assessment of collective traumas' local impact

August 2016

An alternative to using Twitter geotags and hashtags to identify community members who have experienced collective trauma, such as a school shooting, shows promise in helping researchers rapidly assess local effects. The approach, developed by researchers at the University of California, Irvine, was deployed to study the impact of deadly gun violence at UC Santa Barbara, Northern Arizona University and Oregon’s Umpqua Community College.

Followers of local Twitter accounts, such as the city hall’s, were identified, and the tweets of these likely community members were then downloaded for data analysis. Results of the UCI team’s work will be published in the December issue of Psychological Methods, a peer-reviewed academic journal of the American Psychological Association.

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