“Saving the World’s Coral Reefs”
Category Archives: Humanitarian Issues
“Immigration in the Era of Trump and Brexit”
Professor Bram Elias joined the clinic in 2014 and has directed the Clinic’s immigration practice since 2015. He previously worked as an immigration attorney in private practice in downtown Iowa City, where his work focused on federal immigration law, removal defense, immigration-related family law issues in state court, and immigration-related post-conviction review and habeas corpus litigation in state and federal courts. Professor Elias’s students practice before federal immigration courts and administrative bodies, the federal Board of Immigration Appeals, and state and federal courts at both the trial and appellate levels.
“Plastics in the Oceans”
“How Mass Migration Is Changing Our Understanding of Language and Bilingualism”
“A Multicultural Perspective to See Mental Health: Theories and Applications”
“The Migingo Dispute between Uganda and Kenya: What the world’s tiniest island tells us about international law and relations.”
Christopher Rossi directs Humanities Iowa and is an adjunct faculty member at the Iowa Law College. He has a Ph.D. from the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies and law degrees from the University of London and the University of Iowa. He worked on deterrence issues for the Arms Control Association, a division of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, and on verification issues at the UN International Atomic Energy Agency in Vienna, Austria. He has taught at American University, UNI, the Mongolian Diplomatic Academy, and Pusan National University.
He served on the White House National Security Council as director of human rights and humanitarian affairs. He has published articles on the law of war, legal history, international courts and criminal tribunals, polar affairs, Latin America, and on the law of the sea. He has co-edited two books on international affairs and has authored three books, the latest titled Sovereignty and Territorial Temptation (Cambridge University Press, 2017). He has also edited a chapbook on the Lewis & Clark Corps of Discovery Expedition, which was distributed to 20,000 5th grade students of Iowa history, and a documentary collection of Iowa photographs by the American master, David Plowden. His current research interest is on Whiggish International Law: The Monroe Doctrine, Elihu Root, and International Law in the Americas.
Migingo is a small island in the eastern waters of Africa’s Lake Victoria. It is half the size of the Hawkeye football field. For as long as anyone can remember, it was an uninhabited pinprick that happens to straddle the water boundary between Uganda and Kenya. Recent changes in the Lake Victoria’s water table have turned the island into a perfect waystation for hunting the much-desired Nile perch. This newly discovered value of the islet has turned it into a dangerous flashpoint in the deteriorating relations between Uganda and Kenya. Who owns this island? The answer presents unsettling questions about the history of international law, colonialism, genocide, and the future of the International Criminal Court in Africa.
“Palliative Care is Everyone’s Business : Community Participation in Healthcare”
Dr. M.R. Rajagopal, a native of India, is both a palliative care physician and an anesthesiologist. He studied palliative care at Trivandrum Medical College and anesthesiology at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi. Dr. Rajagopal held the position as Professor and Head of Anesthesiology at Calicut Medical College.
Following his time there he served as a professor and Head of Pain and Palliative Medicine at the Amrita Institute of Medical Sciences. While holding this position, Rajagopal kickstarted the first university approved graduate program in India in Pain and Palliative Medicine.
“Healthcare Delivery in Developing Countries”
John Canady, a native of Jefferson, Iowa, received his Bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Grinnell College in 1980. Following graduation John enrolled in the University of Iowa College of Medicine. Dr. Canady completed two residencies, the first in Otolaryngology at the University of Iowa, was completed in 1988. He then completed a residency in Plastic Surgery at the University of Kansas.
Dr. Canady made his mark at Iowa as Professor of Plastic Surgery at UIHC, where he practice clinically, conducted research, and instructed medical students, residents, and fellows. John also served a one year term as President of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons from 2008-2009. After departing UIHC, Dr. Canady became the Medical Director for Johnson & Johnson.
Dr. Canady’s expertise has been valued by patients over the world including a current University of Iowa College Medicine student, Ethan Craig. Ethan, originally from Korea, was adopted by a family in Cedar Rapids. Ethan had a successful cleft lip and palate surgery by Dr. Canady.
Throughout Dr. Canady’s career, he has always been deeply involved in volunteer medical services. Most notably, Dr. Canady is the Co-Founder and Medical team leader of Iowa MOST. Iowa MOST is a 501c3 group that travels to underdeveloped countries to provide life-changing surgical care to children in need of medical attention.
“Surviving Hurricanes in Puerto Rico”
Mariola Espinosa is an Associate Professor in the Department of History at the University of Iowa and an Associate Professor Adjunct in the Section of the History of Medicine at Yale University. She is a historian of medicine and public health in the Caribbean and Latin America. Her current research looks at medical understandings of fever in the French, British, Spanish, and U.S. Caribbean empires. The high level of language proficiency she possesses in English, French, and Spanish is understandably a great aid in this research.
She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses on the history of Cuba; disease, public health, and empire; the history of medicine and public health in Latin America; disease in the Caribbean; global history of Latin American science and medicine; and readings on disease in the Caribbean.
Devastated by a string of hurricanes in 2017, the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico has struggled to recover from the widespread damage to lives and infrastructure. However, hurricanes are a regular occurrence in the Gulf of Mexico and Puerto Rico is no stranger to them. Mariola Espinosa will have a conversation on how the country has managed to cope with such hostile weather.
“Patterns of Maritime Conflicts, 1900-2010”
Sara McLaughlin Mitchell is the F. Wendell Miller Professor of Political Science at the University of Iowa. She has authored five books, the most recent being What Do We Know About Civil Wars? and has edited several special journal issues and published more than forty journal articles and book chapters. She is the recipient of several major research awards from the Department of Defense, National Science Foundation, and the United States Agency for International Development. Her areas of expertise include international conflict, political methodology, and gender issues in academia. Professor Mitchell is co-founder of the Journeys in World Politics workshop, a mentoring workshop for junior women studying international relations. She has received several prestigious awards, the most recent being the Quincy Wright Distinguished Scholar Award (2015) from the International Studies Association, and served as President of the Peace Science Society.
There is little understanding of their generalizable patterns with respect to claim onset and management. This project utilizes data from the Issue Correlates of War (ICOW) on diplomatic claims over maritime areas globally from 1900-2010 to explore patterns in states’ interactions over territorial and resource issues of the seas. Initial results suggest that potential oil resources are more dangerous for producing militarized disputes than extracted oil resources (or none). Migratory fish stocks also raise the risks for militarized confrontation over maritime claims. Surprisingly, maritime claims are more likely to occur between wealthier and more democratic countries, although escalation of such disputes to fatal militarized disputes is rare. These findings will help us understand how prominent cases like the South China Sea disputes fit into the broader landscape of maritime conflicts.
“To Leave in the Afternoon: Inheriting the Language of a Civil War”
Ubah Cristina Ali Farah is a Somali-Italian novelist, performer, teacher and social activist. Her two novels, Madre piccola [Little Mother, Indiana UP 2011] and Il Comandante del fiume [The Commander of the River] tell stories of the Somali civil war and its refugees in Italy. In 2006, she was awarded the Lingua Madre National Literary Prize, and in 2008, the Vittorini Prize. She has a PhD in African Studies from the University of Naples; currently she lives in Brussels. She is participating in the International Writing Program’s 2017 Fall Residency courtesy of the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.
Born in Italy to a Somali father and an Italian mother, Ubah Cristina Ali Farah grew up in Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia, attending an Italian school there until the Somalia Civil War broke out in 1991. Ali Farah and her family subsequently relocated to Pécs, Hungary, and then later moved back to her birthplace, Verona, Italy. In the intervening years, she has carried with her a Somali language that was radically re-shaped by the conflict and stories that seem like her own memories. Farah draws on Eva Hoffman’s concept of “postmemory” to describe the effect of these traumatic experiences on the entire generation born after the Civil War. In this lunchtime lecture, Ubah Cristina Ali Farah will share her experiences as a writer addressing violence, civil division, and national memory.
Reminder: If you have not already done so, please remember to renew your ICFRC membership.
“Current Environmental Challenges”
Gregory R. Carmichael is the Karl Kammermeyer Professor of Chemical and Biochemical Engineering at the University of Iowa and he is the Co-Director of the Center for Global and Regional Environmental Research. Greg also serves as the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies and Research for the College of Engineering.
He has done extensive research related to air quality and its environmental impacts with over 280 journal publications, and he is a leader in the development and application of chemical transport models at scales ranging from local to global. The majority of his recent papers deal with the development and application of chemical transport models (CTM) to studies in regional atmospheric chemistry, air quality and climate. He is a member of the scientific steering committee for the UNEP ABC Asia project. He also serves as chair of the Scientific Advisory Group for the World Meteorological Organization Global Atmospheric Watch Urban Meteorology and Environment project, which is focused on building capacity worldwide to improve air quality forecasts and related services.
Much has changed since the 2015 historic Paris Climate Accord. Even though the U.S. has expressed its plan to withdraw from the agreement, there remain many efforts at local, regional and global scales to address climate and environmental change. Post-Paris opportunities for addressing climate and the challenges to come with them will be discussed.
Reminder: If you have not already done so, please remember to renew your ICFRC membership.
“Women’s Health and the Environment: Going Up in Smoke”
About one-third of the planet’s people use wood every day for fuel. Jerry Anthony and Udaykumar, along with colleagues across the University of Iowa, have been researching causes and consequences of firewood use in the developing world. This talk will focus on the many multi-disciplinary and global issues that interweave into a web of complex problems stemming from a simple act of sustenance: cooking. The daily harvesting and burning of biomass by women for cooking purposes half a world away
connects to us due to its impact on climate, forest loss, environmental degradation and health affects. Anthony and Udaykumar will discuss the importance of this problem not only to women and children in the global south, but to all of us.
[This year’s Provost’s Global Forum will feature “Women’s Health and the Environment: Going Up in Smoke” from April 12-14! More information is available here.]
H.S. Udaykumar received a Bachelor of Technology from the Indian Institute of Technology in Chennai, India, in 1988 and went on to pursue a Master’s and PhD from the University of Florida. He works with the Iowa Institute of Hydraulic Research in Hydroscience and Engineering, and is a member of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the American Institue of Aeronautics and Astronautics, and the Biomedical Engineering Society. Udaykumar is passionate about implementing sustainable designs not only in developing countries, but also shifting policies and energy choices in an industrial setting. He initiated and led the India solar cook-stove project, bringing groups of UI students to rural areas in Rajasthan to develop and implement more efficient designs for cooking.
Jerry Anthony received a Bachelor of Architecture from the University of Kerala, India, in 1989 and went on to pursue a Master’s in Town Planning from the School of Planning and Architecture in New Delhi, India, and a Ph.D. in 2000 in Urban and Regional Planning from Florida State University. Anthony’s major research and teaching interests center around housing and community development issues, particularly affordable housing policies; growth management, where he is concerned with the benefits and costs of growth management distribution across different income populations; and land, infrastructure and housing market issues in the developing regions of South Asia and Latin America. He has served as chair of Iowa City’s Housing and Community Development Commission and member of the Iowa City Sit Housing Taskforce, and Director of the Housing Policy Program at the PPC.
“Health, Wealth, and Waste: Social Entrepreneurship in Global Health and Beyond”
Each person in the U.S., on average, creates 4.6 pounds of waste each day. What happens to that waste? It affects everything we do in several ways, ranging from human health to environmental wellness. This lecture will define the social and cultural aspects of garbage as well as develop an understanding of the link between garbage, human health and environmental health. The life cycle of our modern waste products, their detrimental impacts on human populations and ecosystems, and implications for the future of global sustainability will be explored. The lecture will end with discussing the past, present and future solutions to the growing environmental threat.
Blake Rupe is an Iowa-based digital content manager, editor, instructor and passionate conservationist. As the digital content strategist for the University of Iowa, Blake publishes web content and tracks data points that drive collegiate efforts. Her strengths lie in identifying trends and providing insights for the management team. As an Adjunct Instructor, Blake uses her tech skills to research, develop and teach tech courses for the Global Health Department that focus on the intersection of entrepreneurship, sustainability and global health.
“Gaza: To Exist is to Resist”
Gaza, often referred to as the Gaza Strip, is a narrow piece of land approximately 24 miles long and four to seven miles wide. This home to 1.85 million persons is bound by a border closure by Egypt to the south, Israel to the west, and an Israeli air and sea blockade. Its residents are not free to leave this very hot, arid land which lacks clean water. Founded in 1949 as a self-governing Palestinian Territory, Gaza is part of the wide Palestinian-Israeli conflict. A report release last year by the United Nations stated that if conditions remain unchanged, Gaza will be uninhabitable by 2020.
Maria Filippone, D.O., is a family physician practicing in Des Moines. She received her degree from Kansas City University of Medicine and Bio-sciences. Maria has participated in medical delegations visiting Gaza which were sponsored in part by Physicians for Social Responsibility. She is currently pursuing a life-long dream of learning Arabic at Drake University. Maria is co-founder of the Des Moines Young Artists’ Theatre and co-owner of Noce, Des Moines’ premiere jazz club. Maria has also taught yoga for more than two decades.
“Excluded by Definition: Representations of Immigrants in the French Civic Integration”
France established the “Reception and Integration Contract” for non-European migrants in the context of a perceived crisis of integration and a rise in right-wing populism. While the official purpose of this civic integration program is to facilitate migrants’ entry into society by teaching them about French history, laws, and values, the program may actually reinforce the symbolic boundaries, or conceptual distinctions that separate migrants from the national community. This lecture presents data from an ethnography of the program and interviews with program staff and migrant participants to describe how the program discourse draws different combinations of boundaries based on language, religion and culture between the French nation and migrants from three regions: North Africa, Sub-Saharan Africa, and East Asia.
Elizabeth Onasch is a Visiting Assistant Professor, SUNY Plattsburgh, with a Ph.D. in Sociology. Her teaching and research interests are race and ethnicity, immigration, political sociology, critical race theory, ethnography and comparative historical methods.
“Post-Election Perspectives for International Relations”
James A. Leach joined the Iowa College of Law after serving most recently as the Chairman of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Leach is best known for his 30 years of service as a representative in Congress where he chaired the Banking and Financial Services Committee, the Subcommittee on Asian and Pacific Affairs, and the Congressional-Executive Commission on China. Following his time in Congress, he was a Professor at the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University and Interim Director of the Institute of Politics and Lecturer at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University.
Under his leadership at the NEH, they created a Bridging Cultures program designed to promote understanding and mutual respect for diverse groups within the United States and abroad. As part of this effort, NEH-supported programs designed to expand citizen understanding of American history and values, the civil rights movement, and foreign cultures. In addition, the agency helped launch a National Digital Public Library to establish a unified gateway to digital collections of books, artworks, and artifacts from libraries, museums, and other cultural sites across the country. Leach presided over the culmination of decades-long projects such as the publication of the Autobiography of Mark Twain and the Dictionary of American Regional English.
He holds thirteen honorary degrees, has received decorations from two foreign governments, and is the recipient of the Wayne Morse Integrity in Politics Award, the Adlai Stevenson Award from the United Nations Association, the Edgar Wayburn Award from the Sierra Club, the Norman Borlaug Public Service Award, and the Woodrow Wilson Medal from Princeton. He has served on the board of several public companies and a series of non-profit organizations, including the Century Foundation, the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the Kettering Foundation, Pro Publica and Common Cause, which he chaired.
“Bullets and Bombs: The Background Music for an Average Day in Damascus, Syria”
As the Syrian civil war continues, the average Syrian person is dehumanized to a number, a casualty, or a cost on a neighboring state. While the media has mainly been focused on the outflow of refugees, little is known about what daily lives look like in the capital Damascus; a place where contradictions occur at every corner.
Monzer “Moe” Shakally. UI junior and Asylum seeker from Damascus, Syria. Evolutionary Biology major and a minor in International Relations, pursuing a career in dentistry. Activist in the Syrian conflict in Damascus and has been in the United States for 4 years.
“The Sad State of Turkish Democracy: Why We Should Care”
Just a few short years ago, Turkey was viewed as an anchor of stability in the Middle East, a situation that is now changing rapidly. Following coups in 1960, 1971, and 1980, a new constitution designed to bring democracy and stability was enacted in 1982. Turkey also has the misfortune to share a border with Syria and Iraq. Democracy has now eroded, especially following an attempted military coup against President Recep Erdogan in last July in which 240 persons died. Following the failed coup, more than 100,000 citizens, military personnel, and journalists have been arrested jailed or suspended, and more than 170 media outlets have been shuttered.
Janice G. Weiner was a career member of the U.S. Foreign Service for nearly 26 years. She then worked for two years as professional issues and policy adviser for the American Foreign Service Association. From 1993-1996, she was posted to the U.S. Embassy in Ankara, Turkey as embassy human rights officer, where she won AFSA’s Rivkin Award for her work. She returned to Ankara from 2005-2008, where she worked as the U.S. Embassy’s Political Counselor. She returned to Washington to work as a Legislative Management Officer in the Bureau of Legislative Affairs until her retirement in September 2013. She speaks German, French, Turkish, Polish, and conversational Spanish and Dutch. Ms. Weiner was born and raised in Iowa City, Iowa, where she recently returned. She graduated from Princeton University Magna Cum Laude with a degree in Comparative Literature, and earned a J.D. from Stanford University Law School.
“Murder to Justice—Iowa to China: A Cross-National Collaboration”
“Tong Shao, a Chinese student, attending Iowa State University, was murdered in September 2014. Her body was found on September 26, 2014 in Iowa City where her boyfriend, Xiangnan Li, lived. The police investigation lead to the Johnson County Attorney’s Office obtaining an arrest warrant for Xiangnan Li, for the murder of Tong Shao. Mr. Li, a Chinese student at the University of Iowa, fled back to China within 2 days of when Tong Shao was last seen alive. Because the United States does not have an extradition treaty with China, there were fears that Mr. Li would not be brought to justice. Not to be deterred, Iowa authorities requested the Chinese prosecute Mr. Li in China for Tong Shao’s death. Iowa City Police Det. David Gonzalez, Det. Andy Rich, Johnson County Attorney Janet Lyness, and Assistant County Attorney Elizabeth Dupuich will discuss the investigation of Ms. Shao’s death, how they coordinated with Chinese authorities to have Mr. Li found and prosecuted in China, and the actual trial in China.
Janet Lyness is serving her third term as Johnson County Attorney, having been first elected in 2006. Prior to that she was an Assistant Johnson County Attorney, working in both the criminal and civil divisions. She clerked from the Seventh Judicial District Court of Iowa following law school. Janet received a B.S. in Psychology from the University of Iowa and her law degree from the University of Iowa College of Law. She serves on the Board of Directors for the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council.
Liz Dupuich has been with the Johnson County Attorney’s Office since November of 2013. She currently supervises the marijuana diversion program, is the lead prosecutor assigned to the Johnson County Drug Treatment Court, and prosecutes a majority of the Operating While Intoxicated (OWI) Cases in Johnson County. Prior to coming to Johnson County, Liz worked as a Deputy District Attorney with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office and as a Deputy Attorney General for the California Department of Justice.
Det. Rich has been with the Iowa City Police Department for 13 years and has been assigned to the investigations division for 5 years of his 13 years as a police officer. Det. Rich is currently assigned to Investigation Division working general crimes. Det. Rich has worked in the following capacities: patrol division, sex crimes, financial crimes, crimes against children, violent crimes, death investigations and robberies. Det. Rich is also a board member with the Iowa Sex Crimes Investigators Association.
Det. Gonzalez has been with the Iowa City Police Department for 21 years and has been assigned to investigations division for 16 of his 20 years as a police officer. Det. Gonzalez is currently assigned to the investigations division working general crimes. Det. Gonzalez is currently a board member with the IDIA (Iowa Death Investigators Association).