Reimagining the City-University Connection

Roundtable Lunch Discussions

12:15 – 1:45 PM


1. Barry Bluestone
Russell B. and Andree B. Stearns Professor of Political Economy
Dean, School of Social Science, Urban Affairs, and Public Policy & Urban Affairs
Director, Kitty and Michael Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy, Northeastern University

TOPIC: The challenges of carrying out effective "think and do" public policy research in areas such as housing and economic development.


2. Eric Gordon
Associate Professor, Visual Arts and Media, Emerson College
Director, Engagement Game Lab, Tufts University


TOPIC: How to design interactive media that improve place-based experiences and encourage local civic engagement.


3. Steven Gortmaker
Professor of the Practice of Health Sociology
Department of Society, Human Development, and Health
Harvard School of Public Health

Topic: How to design, implement, and evaluate programs that combat obesity and related diseases by improving physical activity and diet.


4. Judith Kurland
Executive Director, Center for Community Democracy and Democratic Literacy,
McCormack Graduate School of Public Studies, University of Massachusetts, Boston


TOPIC: Building effective partnerships that bring together academic institutions, local government, and community groups to develop models for resident/citizen decision-making


5. Peggy Levitt
Professor, Department of Sociology, Wellesley College
Research Fellow at the Weatherhead Center for International Affairs and at the Hauser Center for Nonprofit Organizations, Harvard University, and Co-Director of the Transnational Studies Initiative

TOPIC: As cities become more diverse and their geopolitical fortunes rise and fall, how do major cultural institutions and the public entities that support them change the ways they represent their home city, region, or country in the world?


6. Alvaro Lima
Director of Research, Boston Redevelopment Authority, City of Boston

TOPIC: How the demographics of Boston have been changing and what the various causes and consequences of this change might be.


7. Judith Grant Long
Associate Professor, Department of Urban Planning & Design, Graduate School of Design,Harvard University
Joy Foundation Fellow, Radcliffe Institute


TOPIC: The intersection of infrastructure and urbanism, particularly the development of major sports facilities such as stadiums and arenas, and whether the Olympics can serve as a catalyst for urban redevelopment.


8. Ceasar McDowell
Professor of the Practice of Community Development, Department of Urban Studies and Planning,
Massachusetts Institute of Technology


TOPIC: In the midst of advances in social media and other engagement efforts, how can we ensure that those at the margins of society have an equal and full voice in setting the public agenda?


9. Chris Osgood
Co-Chair, Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics, City of Boston

TOPIC: How the Office of New Urban Mechanics in the City of Boston promotes and facilitates civic innovations, and an exploration of how this might be expanded to include academic involvement.



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