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Center for Policy Studies

Public Affairs Discussion Group


J. Iwan D. Alexander, Ph.D. - Faculty Director and Chair, Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Case Western Reserve University

Friday February 18, 2011
12:30-1:30 p.m.
Crawford Hall - Room 9
Inamori Center
Case Western Reserve University

Sometimes people in the university study and talk about public policy. The Great Lakes Energy Institute is a case of activism. It promotes research on many energy policy challenges, but its participants also work to build organizations and coalitions to put research to use.

The Institute's topics include energy storage, improving electric grids, wind energy, fuel cells, solar energy materials, improving the efficiency of engines, and carbon capture. One example is how to build foundations for wind turbines that are located in fresh water that (as one may notice a few miles away) can freeze.

There is a lot to hear about and a lot to discuss, so please join us to learn more about one of CWRU's most important initiatives.

There will be no parking available in the visitors parking lot next to Crawford Hall on Friday February 25, 2011. On other Fridays a few spaces are available for visitors with mobility concerns. Parking options for visitors from beyond campus include the Severance Hall parking garage on East Boulevard, the small lot on Adelbert Road just uphill from Euclid Ave, and other lots on campus.

More About Our Guest....

Dr. J. Iwan D. Alexander is the Cady Staley Professor of Engineering and Chair of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Case Western Reserve University and since 2007 has been the faculty director of CWRU's Great Lakes Energy Institute. Dr. Alexander's research interests cover a number of topics including computational fluid dynamics, wind turbine aeroacoustics and wake dynamics, wind farm layout optimization, the physics and mechanics of fluid interfaces, multiphase flow and transport, crystal growth and solidification. This work has produced over 120 refereed papers.

For the last fifteen years his research has included theoretical studies, computational simulations and experiments, particularly on those processes associated with materials preparation and also with fluid surface dynamics. He was also involved with 5 space experiments: three involving semiconductor crystal growth, one liquid diffusion experiment, and an acceleration measurement experiment. Dr. Alexander serves on a number of national committees, is an AIAA associate fellow and has chaired two Gordon Research Conferences.

From 2005-2010 Professor Alexander was the director of the National Center for Space Exploration Research (NCSER), a research center that is collocated at NASA's Glenn Research Center. The NCSER applies expertise in gravitational effects on fluids and combustion to assist the development of new and enabling technologies for NASA's space exploration mission. Dr. Alexander was awarded NASA's Exceptional Service Medal in August 2008.

Under his leadership Case Western Reserve University established the 'Great Lakes Institute for Energy Innovation' in 2007. The purpose of the institute is to develop, through farsighted energy research and energy-use strategies, innovative energy technology platforms that will provide low cost, reliable and sustainable energy.

Friday Lunch Upcoming Topics and Speakers:

February 25: Gene Matthews, Director of Facilities Services, CWRU: "Case Recycles," and How That Works.

March 4: Shirley M. Moore, Professor and Associate Dean for Research, Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing: Even After a Heart Attack - The Challenge of Encouraging Healthy Behavior

March 11: No Session, Spring Break

March 18: Special Inamori Center Event, Howard Ernst, Associate Professor of Political Science at the United States Naval Academy, Dirty Water:  A Critical Look at Regulatory, Cooperative, and Market-based Solutions to the Nation's Growing Water Pollution Problem.

March 25: Mark Votruba, Associate Professor of Economics: The Social Effects of Economic Dislocation

April 1: Jacqueline Lipton, Professor of Law and Co-Director, Center for Law, Technology and the Arts: Privacy and Online Social Networks.

April 8: Special Inamori Center Event.

April 15: Mark Naymik, Reporter, Cleveland Plain Dealer: Ohio's Budget Battle

April 22: Jon Groetzinger, Visiting Professor of Law and Director, China Legal Programs: Developing the Legal Profession in China.

The Friday Lunch discussions are held on the lower (ground) level of Crawford Hall. Visitors with mobility issues may find it easiest to take advantage of special arrangements we have made. On most Fridays, a few parking spaces in the V.I.P. lot in between Crawford Hall and Amasa Stone Chapel are held for participants in the lunch discussion. Overflow parking is also available in the Severance Hall parking garage on East Boulevard.

Visitors then can avoid walking up the hill to the first floor of Crawford by entering the building on the ground level, through the garage area under the building. The further door on the left in that garage will be left unlocked during the period before the Friday lunch. On occasion, parking will be unavailable because of other university events.

For more information about these and other Center for Policy Studies programs, please see http://policy.case.edu.

February 14, 2011

Upcoming Events

Awash in Debt: State Liabilities and the Future of the Chinese Economy

Professor Victor Shih, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Political Science at Northwestern University, February 17, 2011, 4:30-6:00 p.m., Mandel Center Building, Room 115, 11402 Bellflower Road, Cleveland, OH. This program is made possible by the generosity of Ms. Eloise Briskin and is sponsored by the Case Western Reserve University Center for Policy Studies.

Although China has some of the world's lowest level of foreign debt and official government debt, the Chinese government and state owned banks and enterprises actually owe an enormous amount of debt to domestic financial institutions and households. This presentation first catalogs the different segments of debt owed by the Chinese government and related entities and the claimants on this debt. It then discusses some implications for future public policies in China.

Victor Shih is an associate professor of political science at Northwestern University. He is interested in political economy in developing countries broadly, and how politics affect economic outcomes in China specifically. His book, Factions and Finance in China: Elite Conflict and Inflation (NY: Cambridge University Press, 2008) explores the timely question of how politics affects the large volume of underperforming loans on the books of Chinese banks. His on-going projects investigate the performance of Chinese banks, signaling in elite politics, and elite selection in China. Victor Shih received his Ph.D. from Harvard University.

China's Rise and Its Impact on Almost Everything

Author and journalist Orville Schell, February 24, 2011, 6:00-7:00 p.m., Wolstein Building Auditorium, 2103 Cornell Road, Cleveland, Ohio, Sponsored by the Baker-Nord Center for the Humanities. Free and open to the public,  registration recommended.

This lecture provides the opportunity to hear one of the country's most well-informed observers on China, gain a better understanding of the reasons behind China's economic rise, US response to this rise, and how China and the US will/can get closer in tackling critical problems in the twenty-first century.

In his articles, Schell emphasizes that it is the two countries' common interest to work together on "how to construct a new financial architecture and how to solve climate change." He contends that a possible, well-guided co-operation between China and the US will have a tremendous positive economic and environmental impact on the world.

In a Newsweek article, titled "Why China and the U.S. Will Only Get Closer," Schell writes that "What happens next will depend in large part on how Washington leads. China and the United States could easily become antagonistic. But things could unfold much more positively—if leaders on both sides recognize how many interests they share." In fact, China— previously conceiving itself as exploited by the West—is "fashioning a new sort of partnership with the West" as a result of its growing confidence. Such partnership, Schell argues, will demand a lot from both countries: China will have to "resist […] the temptations of hypernationalism" while "Americans must come to terms with the reality that their own vaunted democratic system has often failed them—by letting the economy run off a cliff, for example."

February 2011









































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