From Russia without love
Russian Language Lecturer Krista Hanson's participation in a panel discussion at San Francisco’s Commonwealth Club, "From Russia Without Love: the 2014 Winter Olympics and Human Rights in Russia," was referenced in a Feb. 5 Bay Area Reporter article. "Putin feels the need to bolster his power by uniting people against a common enemy. LGBTs are an easy target," Hanson said. "The risk to athletes is low. The Olympics are Putin's baby. He wants them to go without issues. They want Sochi to look gay-friendly. It's LGBT Russians and allies who are at risk."
CBS News interviewed Professor of Earth & Climate Sciences John Monteverdi for a Feb. 6 report on California's statewide drought and recent rains. "The drought's probably not over but it does look like a break," Monteverdi said. Although the government's Climate Prediction Center estimates there is a 49 percent chance of El Nino developing later this year, "There's no absolute way of saying 'Yes, we're going to have an El Nino.'"
Yardstick for performance
Professor of Management John Sullivan discussed how and why employers should assess the value of their employees for a Feb. 6 Bloomberg BNA report. "All organizations should know the value of their assets, especially top-performing employees; unfortunately most don't," Sullivan said. "The estimated value doesn't have to be perfect," but the evaluation process needs to be consistent.
Professor of Asian American Studies Russell Jeung commented on the Bayview-Hunters Point YMCA's joint celebration of Black History Month and Lunar New Year for a Feb. 7 San Francisco Examiner article. Despite reductions in crime against Asians, racial tensions are "still pretty salient," Jeung said. "Especially for Asians, I think there’s a sense of being targeted. There's a high rate of being bullied and harassed on the streets. It's been pretty consistent."
Shopping for joy
Associate Professor of Psychology Ryan Howell's research, which suggests compulsive shoppers believe purchases will improve their moods, was the focus of a Feb. 10 Miami Herald report. "Every commercial offers transformation expectations -- the idea that if you buy perfume you won’t only smell good but men will like you better and your life will transform -- but compulsive shoppers buy into it more than most people," Howell said. "Just like having to count calories when you eat, shopping is much less enjoyable when you’re aware of your finances."
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