Topic: International


Managing Ebola outbreaks with better health governance

By Ben Edwards  ::  December 10th, 2014

Over 6,000 people have died of Ebola since the outbreak began in West Africa early this year. While the outbreak appears to be subsiding in Liberia and Guinea, the situation in Sierra Leone is worsening. A recent New York Times article suggests that cultural practices are behind the depth and breadth of the outbreak in […]

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Figuring out what works, whether the goal is curing Ebola or improving public policies

By Margery Turner  ::  November 12th, 2014

Listening to NPR’s Morning Edition on Tuesday, my attention was captured by two stories about how researchers can best answer questions about what works, whether the goal is curing a terrifying disease or achieving a public policy objective. Both stories explained the value of random control trials, in which people are randomly divided into two […]

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Does the Export-Import Bank make or lose money?

By Donald Marron  ::  September 10th, 2014

    Suppose your aunt decides to start a business making pizza ovens. She will design and build the ovens, and her daughter will manage operations. A bank is ready to lend her $100,000 to get started, but it wants someone to cosign and be on the hook if she misses any payments. She offers […]

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Maps need context

By Jon Schwabish and Bryan Connor  ::  July 2nd, 2014

It might be the case that maps are the most data-dense visualizations. Consider your basic roadmap: it includes road types (highways, toll roads), directions (one-way, two-way), geography (rivers, lakes), cities, types of cities (capitals), points of interest (schools, parks), and distance. Maps that encode statistical data, such as bubble plots or choropleth maps, are also […]

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Too few women among principal refugee applicants

By María Enchautegui  ::  June 20th, 2014

June 20th is World Refugee Day, a day established by the United Nations to honor the strength, courage, and determination of refugees. This prompted me to find out more about who US refugees are, besides the usual portrait of country of origin. In looking at refugee data published by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), […]

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What about LGBT refugees in the United States?

By Erwin de Leon  ::  June 20th, 2014

    A line in a recent Christian Science Monitor article asks, “Are children fleeing Central American violence refugees who need asylum or illegal gold-diggers who need to go home?” Politicians, talking heads, policymakers, and those of us interested in immigration have been transfixed by the surge of unaccompanied minors at our southern border. Whether […]

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A simple remake for a simple chart

By Jon Schwabish  ::  June 19th, 2014

I had a hard time visually picking out the story in a simple chart published by the Financial Times earlier this week. There was nothing special or particularly complex about the chart—it’s a simple clustered column chart—but the fact that I couldn’t easily see the story made me think there must be a better way. […]

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Serving troubled families

By Susan Popkin  ::  November 21st, 2013

    Last month, I had the opportunity to meet Louise Casey, director of the United Kingdom’s Troubled Families Programme. Casey has served in three successive British cabinets and is passionate about finding solutions to the deep problems that have trapped many families in intergenerational poverty. Unusual for a public official, before deciding on an […]

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What we can learn from the debate about Syria to improve crime policy

By John Roman  ::  September 9th, 2013

  Last week, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee announced that it had reached an internal agreement on the parameters authorizing the Obama administration to use military force in Syria. The administration’s stated goal of military intervention is to deter and degrade the Assad administration’s ability to serially mass murder its own citizens. This week, the […]

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