Summer Scholar: Smith Presents New Data on India at U.S. International Trade Commission

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of stories exploring what Gordon professors are up to in between semesters.

Dr. Smith goes to Washington. Again. In early June, Stephen Smith, professor of economics & business, was invited to speak on a panel at the American Enterprise Institute. On July 23, he traveled to the nation’s capital to present new research at the U.S. International Trade Commission. Along with long time collaborator, Michael Anderson, the Sadler Professor of Economics at Washington and Lee University, and their new co-author Jose Signoret of the USITC’s Office of Economics, Smith discussed their findings regarding India’s export sector. Theirs is the first study to examine the behavior of Indian firms, whose behavior should shed light on whether findings based on U.S., European or Chinese firms should be considered universal. Below is the introduction to their paper:

Export Prices of Indian Firms: An Examination of Market and Firm Characteristics

By Stephen Smith, Michael A. Anderson and Jose Signoret

       “How do firms matter in international trade?  This has been the focus of intense interest in the international economics literature for close to two decades, and much has been learned.  Exporting firms are different from non-exporters—they are larger, have higher productivity and capital intensity, and pay more, among many sharp and now empirically well-established contrasts.  A flurry of work in trade theory that explores firm heterogeneity, particularly with respect to productivity differences, has accompanied this empirical work.[1]

         Much of the evidence comes from studies using firm-level data from the United States on trade and output.  One of the most provocative findings in this literature is that the well-known gravity model result that trade volumes decline with distance arises because of distance’s effect on the extensive margin—that is, because many firms drop out of trade at high distances rather than because all firms trade less.  For firms that trade, the average value of trade per product per firm rises with distance (Bernard and Jensen 2007, 122-3). Continue reading

Summer Scholar: The News of Justice in an Unexpected Land

NEWS UPDATE: Jo Kadlecek’s report on the Honduras seminar is published in the Huffington Post’s religion blog: read the article here. See also her article on Capital Commentary, published by the Center for Public Justice.

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of stories exploring what Gordon professors are up to in between semesters.

Honduras seems an unlikely place for an international gathering of scholars, ministers and community developers sharing ideas and thinking together about how best to pursue justice. But Jo Kadlecek, senior writer, journalist in residence and communication arts adjunct professor, has been invited to cover one such unique seminar June 23-29. Here’s what she said about her assignment:

“Sponsored by an NGO known as the Association for a More Just Society (AJS) in Tegucigalpa, the gathering will be asking some big questions in a setting usually off the radar of most North Americans. The seminar, entitled Justice: Theory Meets Practice in Honduras, includes Yale philosopher/theologian Nicholas Wolterstorff as the keynote speaker, who will give six talks. About 30-40 professors, pastors and practitioners from around the world—China, Brazil, Ecuador, Nigeria, Romania, Cambodia, etc.—will also be presenting talks and projects related to justice themes in their respective contexts.  There will be opportunities to see some of the work of AJS first hand and the impact it’s had on a city with one of the world’s highest rates of violent crime, usually related to poverty and land issues. We’ll also meet with representatives from USAID, NAE, and various other organizations. Continue reading

Bruce Herman Featured in New Book on 100 Boston Artists

When he’s not painting in his studio, Bruce Herman, Lothorien Distinguished Chair of Visual Arts, is guest lecturing on art and hospitality, writing for numerous publications, speaking at conferences or curating exhibits, including Gordon’s own gallery in the Barrington Center for the Arts. During the 2011-2012 academic year alone, Herman spoke on the theology of art in convocations and panel discussions at institutions such as Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary, Whitworth University, College of the Ozarks, Park City Presbyterian Church in Dallas and Christ Church-Hamilton, MA. Of course, he’s guest lectured in numerous classes on campus as well while continuing his painting and mentoring.

No wonder Herman was honored in May as one of 100 recognized artists in the region.  In a new book called 100 Boston Painters —which “celebrates the wide-ranging talents, approaches, and personalities of the vibrant world of Boston arts”—Herman is featured for his work and contributions. Each artist was selected for the book after an extensive review of Boston arts, both past and present, and includes brief statements of the artist’s work.

By the time the book was released, Herman was already on to a new project: Continue reading

Salvation Army Honors Roger Green with Rare Citation

On August 20, 1917, Bramwell Booth, the eldest son of William and Catherine Booth and the person who succeeded William as the General of The Salvation Army, inaugurated The Order of the Founder to honor his father. Millions of members of the Salvation Army have lived and died since the Order was established, but it has been presented to only about 250 people.  It is an honor that is given sparingly.

On the first Saturday in June 2012, Roger Green, professor and chair of biblical studies and Christian ministries, was granted the Order at a gathering of 4,500 Salvationists. Born into a Salvation Army family with grandparents and parents both serving as ministers, Green has written numerous works on the Army and his biblical scholarship is extensive. Green admits to being “completely surprised” by the award; even more so when he saw that the Organization had flown in his younger brother and his wife from Kentucky, and their older brother and his wife from Chicago to celebrate the award with him and his wife.

Linda Bond, the current General of the Salvation Army, would have presented Green with the Order personally during her visit to the Old Orchard Beach Camp Meetings July 29, but Green will be in Chicago then participating in ministry with the Army there. Instead, she sent this citation: Continue reading

Summer Film Review: Our Young Kingdom in “Brave”

 Editor’s note: This is part of a series of stories exploring what Gordon professors are up to in between semesters. Communication arts professor and film reviewer, Rini Cobbey, takes a look at why the popular new summer PIXAR film is not your typical children’s movie.

Brave: “Our Kingdom is Young” 

By Rini Cobbey

The more dimensional Disney movie images get, a friend of mine recently observed, the more dimensional the characters are, too.

The latest Disney-PIXAR and fairytale princess movie, Brave is a familiar fantasy that goes refreshingly beyond its formula, with welcome (if not earth-shattering) depth and shades. It’s witty, pretty, and exciting: a sort of healthy, playful development in the realm of coming-of-age cartoons, and worth hanging out with on a summer afternoon.

Merida is the oldest child of a big bear of a fun-loving king and his more stoic yet empathetic wife, the queen. The time has come for the adolescent princess to select a prince to marry from among the three who compete for her hand.

Visuals in this mountainous forestland are stunning – the most intricate PIXAR setting I’ve seen, with colors, textures, shadows, and details complementing the age-old story of a willful youth fighting for self-determination.

A wild-haired young woman with nonconforming but not-so-wild hopes, dreams, and skills, Merida isn’t ready for her prescribed destiny. She and her mother struggle separately and then together to strike a balance between responsibility and loyalty to the ways of their land on the one hand, and youth and spontaneity on the other. Continue reading

Honored: Gin Recognized for Global Sport Contributions

Val Gin, second from left, with colleagues at the June conference.

She might teach recreation and leisure studies, but Professor Valerie Gin takes her work seriously. As a result, colleagues from across the country honored her last month for her international contributions to the field.

During the Christian Society for Kinesiology and Leisure Studies (CSKLS) conference held June 7-9 at Indiana Wesleyan University, Gin, who is also the chair of Gordon’s Recreation and Leisure Studies department, received The Glen Van Andel Distinguished Service Award. The Award “honors a current professional member who has provided extensive meritorious service to the profession within or outside of the society.” Recipients of the award are recognized as “leaders in the Society, who have worked to enhance and advance CSKLS goals,” and have earned the respect of fellow-members through extended dedication to the Society.

Gin was recognized because of her extensive international involvement lecturing, presenting papers, and consulting athletes and coaches in over 20 countries for the past decade, including Argentina, Australia, Canada, China, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Egypt, England, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Hong Kong, India, Jamaica, Kenya, Korea, Lebanon, Portugal, Romania, Singapore, South Africa, Thailand, Ukraine, and Zambia.

Continue reading

Summer Scholar: Salzburg Symposium & Program Explores Dynamics of Sacrifice in European Culture

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of stories exploring what Gordon professors are up to in between semesters. 

Tom Brooks

Gregor Thuswaldner

Five Gordon professors will return to Austria July 9-August 13 for the second annual symposium of the Salzburg Institute of Gordon College with the University of Salzburg. Co-directors of the Institute, Thomas Brooks, professor of music, and Gregor Thuswaldner, associate professor of German and linguistics, along with Susan Brooks, professor of music, Jim Zingarelli, professor of art, and Pamela Thuswaldner, adjunct professor of German, will also teach in the summer school program, which includes classes, tours and the international symposium. Here’s how Thuswaldner and his team of organizers described their call for papers:

Making Sacrifices: Visions of Sacrifice in European Culture                                                                       University of Salzburg, Austria; July 31, 2012

Much like Italian premier Mario Monti did at the beginning of December, politicians are increasingly calling on citizens to make sacrifices for the future of their countries. Such public invocations of sacrifice place politicians and their constituents in a state of tension at least partly because of the difficult and often contradictory connotations of sacrifice. Sacrifice, a concept of religious provenance deeply embedded in European culture, can mean to offer for destruction and to make amends, to hurt and to heal, make whole, or sacred. Such oppositions at the heart of sacrifice make it a dangerous and much-fraught concept, as well as a fruitful and powerful one in numerous spheres of culture.

This year’s symposium of the Salzburg Institute of Gordon College is dedicated to investigating notions of sacrifice as they appear at important junctures of European culture, past and present. The following questions, among others, will be considered: Continue reading