PRGS Alumni Newsletter, Findings


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In this issue . . .

Professor and Former Journalist Appointed Interim Dean of PRGS

Molly SelvinMolly Selvin has been appointed interim dean of the Pardee RAND Graduate School, Executive Vice President Michael Rich has announced. Selvin has been a faculty member of the school for nearly 25 years, teaching courses on the U.S. Constitution, the use of history in policy analysis, and the role of the media in public policy.

"Molly will be an excellent steward of the graduate school as we continue our national search for a new dean," Rich said.

Selvin was on the staff of the Los Angeles Times from 1990 until 2008, both as an editorial writer and as a business reporter. Previously, she spent 10 years at RAND, participating in research on asbestos litigation, jury behavior, and civil case management. Selvin has a Ph.D. in American history from the University of California, San Diego.

"I'm thrilled to be back at PRGS and honored to have this opportunity to oversee such an extraordinary institution," said Selvin. "Rachel Swanger, Tom Cahoon, and I have exciting plans for the fall and I look forward to getting to know the current and incoming fellows as well as reconnecting with PRGS alumni."

Selvin replaces John Graham, who has left to become dean of the Indiana University School of Public and Environmental Affairs.

Current Fellow Updates

Arkadipta Ghosh Visits Beijing

Arkadipta Ghosh Arka updates Findings on his travels: "I was one of the 10 doctoral students invited to attend the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) conference on Taking Action for the World's Poor and Hungry People during October 17-19, 2007, in Beijing. We were selected on the basis of an international competition that sought to identify and invite leading Ph.D. students working on poverty and hunger. We were required to submit an application and an outline of our research, and I was selected to present Land Reforms and Women's Nutrition in India, one of the key papers in my dissertation. (This paper was subsequently renamed The Effect of Land Reforms on Long-Term Health and Well-Being in India.)

"Our trip to Beijing was fully funded by IFPRI. It proved to be an immensely rewarding and enjoyable experience. I attended a one-day workshop for the doctoral students on October 16 at which I met the other selected students, presented my research, and received useful comments from some of the leading experts in the field. The other students and I attended the main conference during the next three days, during which we heard economists, other social science researchers, policymakers, and practitioners from all corners of the world speaking on different aspects of poverty and hunger and ways to potentially solve these problems in the developing world. The conference was unique in bringing together leading development economists and other experts performing cutting-edge research, along with policymakers and practitioners who were involved in designing and implementing innovative policies. The discussion and debates in each conference session were therefore extremely lively and interesting. I also managed to find time to explore parts of Beijing—including the Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square, malls and restaurants, and, to top it all, a trip to the Great Wall at Badaling—most of these in the great company of other students. Clearly, it was one of the best and most memorable international conferences I ever attended or will attend!"

Kartika Palar Presents Salt Analysis to New York City Commissioner of Health

"On June 6, I presented the results from my analysis on the benefits of reducing sodium consumption among adults in New York City to Thomas Frieden, the commissioner of the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (which funded the study), and a group of health department officials. This study, conducted with Roland Sturm, calculated the potential economic and quality-of-life benefits of reducing sodium consumption in New York City. Potential benefits would be driven by reductions in high blood pressure and related chronic disease, which are highly prevalent and very costly city- and nationwide.

Kartika Palar"Overall, the presentation was very well received and resulted in great ideas for further analysis and collaboration. Population-based policies around chronic disease prevention are a high priority of the current administration in the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. The city made headlines this year for implementing a ban on trans fats in restaurants, as well as for requiring chain restaurants to provide calorie information on menus.

"The NYC study replicated a national analysis that calculated potential benefits of sodium reduction among U.S. adults overall, which I also presented on June 8 at the AcademyHealth Annual Research Meeting in Washington, D.C. This presentation was part of a panel entitled Emerging Models for Preventing and Managing Chronic Disease, moderated by PRGS alum Kenneth Thorpe."

Fellows Present on Climate Change to the Board

Ben Bryant, Lisa Klautzer, and Sarah Outcault presented to the PRGS Board of Governors on climate change policy around the world. Lisa began by discussing the structure of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, the Kyoto Protocol, and the progress and setbacks of countries in the European Union. Ben discussed the relations between the United States, China, and India, and the stalemate in negotiations that has arisen because China and India emphasize international equity in bearing the cost of emissions reduction while the United States emphasizes the importance of including all emitters. Sarah focused on the recent efforts in California stemming largely from Assembly Bill No. 32—the California Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006—and the importance of California's actions for climate action in the United States as a whole.

PRGS's Military Fellows Present on Iraq War Experiences

PRGS asked two of its Army Officer students—Lieutenant Colonel Jeffrey Peterson and Lieutenant Colonel Jamie Gayton—to brief the Board of Governors at its quarterly meeting on March 28. Jeff and Jamie spoke on their battalion command tours in Iraq.

Jeff commanded a 500-Soldier Stryker Squadron in southern and central Baghdad for 15 months from July 2006 to September 2007. He was responsible for capturing or killing insurgents, securing neighborhoods, and restoring services in an effort to stabilize neighborhoods and help Iraqis assume responsibility for these functions. Jeff's presentation focused on his "safe neighborhood" model, which was highlighted in the Wall Street Journal. Jeff's battalion walled off neighborhoods to reduce entrance and exit points and completed quality-of-life projects within the confines—all in an attempt to give the locals a neighborhood worth fighting for. His efforts were largely successful, especially in the Haifa Street area adjacent to Baghdad's International Zone.

Jamie commanded a 300-Soldier Brigade Troops Battalion in the 3rd Infantry Division in Iraq from January 2005 to January 2006. Jamie's battalion was responsible for more than $300 million worth of essential services and reconstruction operations in eastern Baghdad, including Sadr City. Jamie's presentation highlighted his reconstruction initiatives; e.g., Web-based reconstruction contracts—which broadened the contractor base; resulted in competitive bidding; and led to lower contracting costs, higher-quality construction, and more timely completions. He also highlighted his media engagement policy, whereby he volunteered to brief the media and accompany them through Baghdad neighborhoods to let them see firsthand and hear directly from Iraqi citizens about the progress being made and their subsequent changed beliefs in their government's ability to support their needs.

The presentations were well received by the board. The question-and-answer period was so engaging that it extended into the luncheon meal.

Two of PRGS's Air Force Fellows Promoted

Air Force Lieutenants David Schill and Jonathan Ferro were promoted to First Lieutenant in a ceremony attended by numerous PRGS fellows and RAND researchers. Army Lieutenant Colonel Jamie Gayton presided over the ceremony.

PRGS Military Fellows Jeff Peterson and Jamie Gayton
PRGS Military Fellows Jonathan Ferro and David Schill with Jamie Gayton (center)

Recent Issues of Policy Insight

Sai Ma and Neeraj Sood
Caring for a Third of the World's Population: Challenges for the Health Systems of China and India
Volume 2, Issue 3, June 2008

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Ryan Keefe, James Griffin, and John D. Graham
New Engines and Fuels for Cars and Light Trucks
Volume 2, Issue 2, April 2008

Read more Full document

Ying Liu and Krishna B. Kumar
China and India: Different Educational Paths Toward Prosperity
Volume 2, Issue 1, February 2008

Read moreFull document


On June 21, PRGS held its biyearly commencement. A total of 26 doctoral degrees and 42 master's degrees were awarded during the ceremony, which was attended by about 200 people.

Honorary degrees were awarded to Frank Carlucci, chairman emeritus of The Carlyle Group, former U.S. Secretary of Defense, and former vice chairman of the RAND Board of Trustees; and Alain Enthoven, Professor of Public and Private Management (Emeritus) at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business.

The Ph.D. recipients are Kamiljon Akramov, Tatiana Andreyeva, Alexis M. Bailey, Gordon Donald Bitko, Abigail Bugbee Brown, Arindam Dutta, Kateryna Fonkych, Brent D. Fulton, Arkadipta Ghosh, Owen J. Hill, Sai Ma, Mohammed Rehan Malik, Brian E. A. Maue, Amber Linea Moreen, Arnab Mukherji, Christopher Ordowich, Nishal Ray Ramphal, Hilary J. Rhodes, Oleksandr Rohozynsky, Lu Shi, M. Teresa V. Taningco, Haijun Tian, Anga Raj Timilsina, Khoa Dang Truong, Eric Jerry Unger, and Katia Vlachos-Dengler.

PRGS Commencement Graduates

Master of Philosophy Candidates

PRGS Commencement Members

Doctor of Philosophy Candidates

Dean John Graham noted that PRGS awards Ph.D.'s in the relatively new field of public policy analysis: "They have earned this degree at one of the most innovative programs in higher education, one that combines classroom education from several disciplines with on-the-job training in applied research for real-world clients in the public and private sectors. The result is 26 graduates who are now prepared to tackle the world's most pressing problems: health care, counterterrorism, education, and sustainable development, to name just a few."

Francis Fukuyama Keynote speaker Francis Fukuyama, noted author and political scientist, spoke to the graduates about how the United States (1) must adapt to a world in which military might is no longer enough and (2) needs to address its problems at home if it wants to continue to have global influence.

"The problems the United States faces are ones of our own creation," Fukuyama said. "None of the problems and challenges are insoluble. They are mostly political and institutional ones." In his speech Is the United States Ready for a Post-American World? Fukuyama noted that the world has changed dramatically since the Cold War and the post-Cold War eras, when the common assumption was that "the United States was the absolute dominant power in the world, and that power would be sufficient to shape outcomes all over the world."

But today, other nations are catching up economically and the world that is emerging calls for a different set of skills. American foreign policy now has to integrate a certain amount of social work and nation-building, because improved trade and democracy has only limited appeal to the poor populations that are at the center of the struggle for power and influence in the world, he said. Groups like Hamas and Hezbollah and Latin American leaders such as President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela have gained power by offering social services to the poor people in their countries.

Despite his rejection of an inevitable American decline, Fukuyama listed three areas of weakness that the United States must address: the diminishing capacity of the public sector; a certain degree of complacency among Americans about understanding the world from a non-U.S. perspective; and a polarized political system that is incapable of even discussing solutions.

After the Soviet Union launched Sputnik in 1957, America responded by ramping up investments in science and technology that restored American technological leadership. It should have done a similar thing after the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, by trying to gain a greater understanding of complex regions of the world like the Middle East, he said. But today, the U.S. embassy in Baghdad has only a handful of fluent Arabic speakers.

The deadlock in the American political system has "taken off the table the serious discussion of how to solve some of these long-term and very challenging problems," Fukuyama said, noting that neither the left nor the right has suggested raising the energy tax, which he said was the obvious way to deal with foreign energy dependence and encourage development of fuel alternatives.

Fukuyama is a member of the Pardee RAND Graduate School Board of Governors and a trustee of the RAND Corporation.

Alumni Updates

Dr. Yılmaz Argüden, chairman of ARGE Consulting and Rothschild-Turkey, received the Distinguished Citizen Award from Gen. Brent Scowcroft, chairman of the American-Turkish Council (ATC), and Ferit F. Sahenk, chairman of the Turkish-U.S. Business Council (TAIK), for his innovative leadership in promoting Turkey in North America. Previous recipients of the award include Richard B. Cheney; Alexander M. Haig; Zbigniew Brzezinski; Richard Holbrooke; Ahmet Ertegün, founder of Atlantic Records; Mustafa V. Koç, chairman of a leading Turkish conglomerate; Rıfat Hisarciklioğlu, chairman of Turkish Chambers of Commerce and Industry; and Hikmet Çetin, NATO's Civilian Representative in Afghanistan.

Argüden is a leading strategist, advisor, and board member for major public and private institutions in Turkey, Canada, the Netherlands, and Russia, as well as for many nongovernmental organizations. ARGE Consulting is a leading management consulting firm in Turkey and has been recognized at the European Parliament as one of the three best companies "shaping the future" with its commitment to corporate social responsibility. ARGE is the first Turkish signatory of the Global Compact. Rothschild is an investment bank in Turkey.

Argüden is also an adjunct professor at Bosphorus University and Koç University, author of numerous books, and a columnist focusing on business and strategy issues. He was selected as a Global Leader for Tomorrow by the World Economic Forum for his commitment to improve the state of the world.

Arthur Brooks, Louis A. Bantle Professor of Business and Government Policy at Syracuse University, has been chosen by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) Board of Trustees to be AEI's next president. He will succeed Christopher DeMuth on January 1, 2009. Bruce Kovner, chairman of the AEI Board of Trustees and of the Board's succession search committee, said, "AEI's trustees are delighted and very gratified that Arthur Brooks has accepted our appointment . . . The trustees were both unanimous and highly enthusiastic in deciding that Arthur Brooks—by dint of his intellect, accomplishments, character, and devotion to AEI's work and purposes—is the best possible person to lead AEI in the critical years ahead."

James Q. Wilson, chairman of the AEI Council of Academic Advisers and also a member of the succession search committee, said, "I have known and worked with Arthur Brooks since the late 1990s when he was a doctoral candidate at the Pardee RAND Graduate School. He is one of America's outstanding young policy scholars, combining empirical sophistication and philosophical depth to a rare degree. He is also a man of character, conviction, and practical judgment whose research interests span the full range of AEI's programs. We are immensely fortunate that a man of his talents would devote himself to directing AEI's research, publications, and institutional development." Wilson is a member of the Pardee RAND Graduate School Board of Governors and a former trustee of the RAND Corporation.

Steve Kiser reports that he has been deployed to Baghdad, where he is in charge of the Iraq Threat Finance Cell, an interagency organization directed by the National Security Council that works to disrupt terrorist finances.

David Maxwell-Jolly has been appointed director of the California Department of Child Support Services (DCSS) by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger. "With David's leadership, the department has developed cutting-edge technology to provide vital financial security to thousands of California children and families. His technical expertise and commitment to helping families make him the ideal candidate for this job," said Governor Schwarzenegger.

Maxwell-Jolly had served as chief deputy director for DCSS since 2005. In that position, he advised and assisted the director of the department in the formulation, implementation, and administration of statewide policies pertaining to child support services programs and systems including the California Child Support Automation System (CCSAS). From 2002 to 2004, Maxwell-Jolly was project director of CCSAS at DCSS and the Franchise Tax Board, where he directed state and contract staff in the development of the statewide automated system and the state disbursement unit. Maxwell-Jolly previously served as a deputy secretary for the Health and Human Services Agency from 1999 to 2002. As deputy secretary, he provided budget and management oversight for 12 departments and one board under the agency.

From 1986 to 1999, Maxwell-Jolly was a principal consultant on health and human services issues for the California State Senate. Prior to that, Maxwell-Jolly was a supervising analyst for the California Legislative Analyst's Office from 1982 to 1986. His experience also includes two years as a project analyst for the Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program.

Rehan Malik reports to Findings that his dissertation work is being well received: "I made a presentation at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) this month. One of my papers got accepted at American Educational Research Association Annual Meeting, and one was accepted at the European Association of Development Research and Training Institutes conference at Bonn in Fall 2005. Two papers submitted, two acceptances. I wish there were nine days in a week so that I could process the other four papers as well."

Anga Timilsina wrote from Addis Ababa, where he was training field staff from a variety of United Nations organizations, including the Office on Drugs and Crime, the UN Development Programme (UNDP), and the Economic Commission for Africa. The training program is part of the UNDP's Global Programme Against Corruption. Anga is also working on a UNDP primer on corruption and development. He writes: "When I accepted the position of research analyst in the Democratic Governance Group, Bureau for Development Policy, UNDP, I didn't realize that I would be this busy. Can you imagine that I flew from Oslo to New York last Friday and left for Addis Ababa early Saturday morning? Although I am very busy, I am quite satisfied with what I am doing."

Khoa Truong has accepted an assistant professorship at the Department of Public Health Sciences in the College of Health, Education, and Human Development at Clemson University. Before the position begins in June 2009, Khoa will be working as a visiting research fellow/teaching faculty member jointly at the Vietnam Health Strategy and Policy Institute and the Hanoi School of Public Health.

Let Other Alums Know What You Are Up To!

Send us a class note, or just update your contact information; please be sure to include your name, graduation year, current contact information, and, if available, a recent photo. Please send to

Dissertations from Recent Alums

Kamiljon Akramov, Governance and Foreign Aid Allocation

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Tatiana Andreyeva, An International Comparison of Obesity in Older Adults: Effects and Risk Factors

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Alexis Bailey, Religious Expression and the United States Air Force

Gordon Bitko, RFID in the Retail Sector: A Methodology for Analysis of Policy Proposals and Their Implications for Privacy, Economic Efficiency and Security

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Abigail Brown, Private Firms Working in the Public Interest: Is the Financial Statement Audit Broken?

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Arindam Dutta, Three Papers in International Health Policy: Modeling the Links Between Economics and Epidemiology

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Kateryna Fonkych, Accelerating the Adoption of Clinical IT Among Healthcare Providers in US: Strategies & Policies

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Arkadipta Ghosh, Life, Livelihood, and Long Term Well-being: The Effect of Mortality Risks and Land Reforms on Human Capital Investments in India

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Owen Hill, Aircraft Modifications: Assessing the Current State of Air Force Aircraft Modifications and the Implications for Future Military Capability

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Sai Ma, A Good Start In Life: Revisiting Racial and Ethnic Disparities in Health Outcomes At and After Birth

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Mohammed Rehan Malik, Improving Decision-making Systems for Decentralized Primary Education Delivery in Pakistan

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Brian Maue, Balancing Two Lives: The Relationship of Activation, Pay, and Retention Among U.S. Air Force Reserve Pilots

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Amber Moreen, Overcoming the "Resource Curse": Prioritizing Policy Interventions in Countries with Large Extractive Industries

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Arnab Mukherji, Agrarian Households in Semi-Arid Tropics: Evaluating Policy Options

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Christopher Ordowich, Considering a Cadre Augmented Army

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Nishal Ramphal, The Role of Public and Private Litigation in the Enforcement of Securities Laws in the United States

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Hilary Rhodes, Confronting the Challenges of Student Engagement: A Case Study of a School-Based Intervention

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Oleksandr Rohozynsky, Developing a Safety Net for Ukraine

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Maria Teresa Taningco, Assessing the Effects of Parental Decisions About School Type and Involvement on Early Elementary Education

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Haijun Tian, Caring for Depression and Comorbid Pain: Evidence from the Health and Retirement Survey and the Healthcare for Communities Survey

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Anga Timilsina, Getting the Policies Right: The Prioritization and Sequencing of Policies in Post-Conflict Countries

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Khoa Truong, Essays on Environmental Determinants of Health Behaviors and Outcomes

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Eric Unger, An Examination of the Relationship Between Usage and Operating and Support Costs for Air Force Aircraft

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Katia Vlachos-Dengler, Carry That Weight: Improving European Strategic Airlift Capabilities

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Remembering Sue Bourdon

Glenda Sue Bourdon—one of the first PRGS administrators—passed away peacefully, at home with her family, on November 3, 2007, after a long battle with cancer.

Sue was born in Tulare, California, in 1937. She graduated from Tulare Union High School and attended College of the Sequoias on a drama scholarship. She worked for IBM and RAND before graduating from Loyola Law School. She was in private practice in Los Angeles before serving 10 years as a deputy district attorney.

After retiring from practice she became an avid tennis player; was a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for foster children; and served as a member of the Foster Care Review Board, the Yavapai CASA for Kids Board, and the Friends of Yavapai College Arts Board.

She is survived by Eric, her husband of 51 years; her sons Stuart, Glen, and Phillip; her grandchildren Erica, Alexandria, Jeffrey, Nicole, and Taylor; her sister Beth; her uncle Tom; and a myriad of cousins and friends.

In lieu of flowers, please send a donation to Yavapai CASA for Kids, P.O. Box 12457, Prescott, AZ 86304. Sign Up for Lifetime Email Forwarding!

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