Category Archives: Public Policy

Mind the Gap: How Education Inequality Holds Us Back

My post at WBUR’s Cognoscenti: The achievement gap is more than a symptom of growing inequality in the United States — it’s one of the causes as well.  Inequality is rising on many fronts in the United States. The gap … Continue reading

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Aaron Alexis and the Threat of the Loner

Here’s an Op-Ed I wrote with my husband in Friday’s Washington Post: In seeking to find out what led to the shootings at the Washington Navy Yard, we must ask the right questions. What features of American society make us more prone … Continue reading

Posted in Other published work, Public Policy, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Empathy Gap

My family and Bangladesh go way back: I lived in Bangladesh for a year when I was in my early twenties. A decade later, in an odd twist of fate, my sister moved to Bangladesh, too, and stayed there with … Continue reading

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Two Degrees of Separation From a Bomber

A TIME.com column I wrote today with my husband, Nicholas Christakis: We spent a tense hour last Monday checking Facebook and Twitter to account for all 400 of our students at Harvard College, several of whom had been running in the marathon … Continue reading

Posted in Erika @ TIME.com, Harvard-related, My story, Public Policy | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Painful Questions

How do we talk about the Boston marathon murders in a way that acknowledges the suffering and the evil, yet also places them within the broader perspective of suffering and evil that the human race has experienced, and is currently … Continue reading

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Who You Gonna Call In A Crisis?

I want to return to my “Big Fat American Government” piece I posted a couple days ago. I think the horrific explosion at a fertilizer plant in the town of West, Texas is a chilling counterpoint to the kind of government response … Continue reading

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My Big Fat American Government

Hey, props to Boston! Taxachusetts, I heart you. Gimme some B-I-G government! O big/bloated/corrupt government-shunners, O bombastic, ignorant Tea partiers, O federal trough-slopping hypocrites… come on, just admit it. Didn’t we all see this week what robust public investments in health, … Continue reading

Posted in My story, Public Policy | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 9 Comments

How to Survive an Attack

There’s something grimly understated about this article from the NYT on how to survive a mass homicide attack. Apparently, we now have a large enough sample size from these shootings to talk intelligently about predictors of survival: Research on mass … Continue reading

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A Free Lunch

I’m getting a lot of inquiries from people at CNN and radio shows asking me to talk about  paying at-risk teenagers not to become pregnant. Mainly, people seem to think I’m totally nuts, so let me clarify a few key … Continue reading

Posted in Children/Teens/Young Adults, Public Policy, Women-related | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Carrots and Sticks and the politics of teen pregnancy

To the folks who think I’m crazy for proposing that we pay kids not to get pregnant, a few questions. Why is it so abhorrent to incentivize people, financially, to behave in certain ways? I’m talking about cases where the … Continue reading

Posted in Children/Teens/Young Adults, Public Policy, Women-related | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments