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Scholars Strategy Network's No Jargon

No Jargon, the Scholars Strategy Network’s weekly podcast, presents interviews with top university scholars on the politics, policy problems, and social issues facing the nation. Powerful research, intriguing perspectives -- and no jargon. Find show notes and plain-language research briefs on hundreds of topics at www.scholarsstrategynetwork.org/nojargon.
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Scholars Strategy Network's No Jargon
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Feb 21, 2018

Ballot questions let voters decide on big issues. But with ad campaigns and special interests, reliable information can be hard to find. Professor John Gastil outlines an innovative solution—give a small group of citizens all of the information they need to make up their minds and share their findings with fellow voters.

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Feb 14, 2018

Raising taxes on the rich encourages job creators to skip town. Or so say some economists and policymakers. This week, Professor Cristobal Young dispels the myth of millionaires leaving high tax states and shows the many ways the wealthy are invested in the places they live.

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Feb 7, 2018

Prescription drugs are expensive. But for years, a little-known program has given some hospitals discounts to help them provide care for low-income and uninsured patients. Professor Sayeh Nikpay explains why this program is now under fire and what this means for America’s safety net.

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Jan 31, 2018

We all want innovative policies that propel our nation forward. But getting things done in DC isn’t always easy. This week, Thomas Kalil joins us to share some of the practical lessons he learned during his years working in the White House—have a concrete plan of action, make it easy, and don’t worry about who gets the credit.

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Jan 24, 2018

In 1965, the passage of the Voting Rights Act helped secure equal access to the ballot, and it has enjoyed bipartisan support ever since. Right? Professor Rhodes shows how, over the years, politicians who publicly supported this law worked behind the scenes to dismantle it.

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Jan 17, 2018

The 2018 midterms are rapidly approaching and voters want to believe they’re going to make rational choices at the polls. But as Professor Casey Klofstad explains, there is an unexpected factor influencing voter behavior and affecting our elections—the tone of a candidate’s voice.

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Jan 10, 2018

A $50 citation, $100 in court costs—for many Americans navigating the criminal justice system, fines and fees like these add up quickly. Professor Alexes Harris reveals why local governments charge convicts to pay for the justice system and how this disproportionately burdens marginalized people and communities.

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Dec 27, 2017

Professors all across the country have expertise that can improve public policy, but how can they get their research into the hands that matter? Professor Lee Badgett provides the tips and tools scholars need to make these connections in the new year and tells the stories of a few successful public professors.

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Dec 20, 2017

Trust in our governments is low, and seems to only be getting worse. Professor Donald Kettl explains why widespread distrust plagues governments around the world, what this means for democracy, and how, if at all, governments can earn back our trust.

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Dec 13, 2017

Republicans and Democrats alike have complained about the speed with which the recent tax bills are going through Congress. In light of this, we’re bringing you an archive episode with Professor James Curry who explains that lacking expertise, staff, and time, most members of Congress rarely get to analyze or contribute to the bills on which they vote.

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Dec 6, 2017

Nicole Bedera and Miriam Gleckman-Krut stay post-interview to discuss their ideas for changing university policies on campus sexual assault.

Dec 6, 2017

Campus sexual assault is a problem across the country, but colleges differ widely in how they respond to these cases. PhD candidates Nicole Bedera and Miriam Gleckman-Krut lay out why national standards are changing under the Trump administration and how they are shifting protections and resources to the accused.

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Nov 28, 2017

This week we are showcasing an episode from The Measure of Everyday Life, a podcast hosted by SSN member Brian Southwell. He spoke with Professor Deondra Rose about the policy moves that helped opened doors for women in higher education.

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Nov 22, 2017

Congress is on the verge of passing major tax reform that many say is tilted in favor of the wealthy. This week we’re looking back at an episode with Professor Rick Hasen to explore why the wealthy often enjoy such outsized benefits and power in American politics - and how changing the Supreme Court is the best way to fix that.

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Nov 15, 2017

The neighborhoods we live in help shape our mental and physical health. Professor Antwan Jones explains what happens when some neighborhoods benefit from private and public investments while others are left behind, and what can be done to change this.

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Nov 8, 2017

Inequality is on the rise in America, but what’s behind it? Professor Steven Teles and Dr. Brink Lindsey lay out how federal and state policies help the rich get richer, slow economic growth, and promote inequality.

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Oct 31, 2017

This week we are highlighting an episode from Have You Heard, a podcast co-hosted by SSN member Jack Schneider and journalist Jennifer Berkshire. They spoke with Sally Nuamah about the long-term effects of school closures on communities, like declining voter turnout.

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Oct 24, 2017

As Republicans move forward with their tax overhaul, this week’s episode revisits Vanessa Williamson’s interview on the misconception that Americans hate taxes. She outlines how anti-tax policies became popular despite the fact that most Americans support increasing taxes for services they care about.  

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Oct 17, 2017

Political rumors are spreading across the country and the widening divide between parties is only making them more potent. Professor Adam Berinsky discusses where these rumors come from and what, if anything, can be done to combat them.

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Oct 3, 2017

For the final act of the live show, Professors Erin O’Brien and Peter Ubertaccio tackle Massachusetts politics. They dig into the character of the Democratic and Republican parties in the state, and show how the state isn’t as deep blue as many think.

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Sep 26, 2017

For the second act of the live show, Professors Deondra Rose and Gunther Peck dive deep into North Carolina’s contentious politics, the impacts of the state’s voting laws and redistricting efforts, and what these deep divides say about national politics.

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Sep 19, 2017

In the first of three acts for the 100th episode live show, Professors Theda Skocpol and René Flores discuss the role of national and local organizations on the 2016 election outcome, the Trump presidency so far, and what comes next.

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Sep 12, 2017

Foster parents and social workers help children in difficult situations, but too often they lack the resources they need. Professor Antonio Garcia describes how this impacts foster children and what a focus on prevention could look like.

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Sep 5, 2017

High costs are making college unaffordable, or even impossible, for many Americans. Professor Nicholas Hillman outlines why student loan debt has become such a major issue. Professor Laura Perna highlights a potential solution -- free tuition programs.

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Aug 29, 2017

Voting is a pillar of American democracy, but for many, the vote has been out of reach. Professor Doug Spencer explains the past and present of the right to vote in America, and how debates about voter fraud are missing the mark.

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