Seminars to promote interdisciplinary research

Faculty and graduate students with an interest in topics relating to labor, households, health care, law and social welfare are invited to take part in a series of Monday brown-bag luncheon seminars to be held biweekly through early December.

Now in its eighth year, the “Work, Families and Public Policy” series features one-hour presentations on current research interests of faculty from across the University and from other local and national universities.

The presentations are held from noon-1 p.m. in Eliot Hall, Room 300, and are followed by a half-hour discussion period.

Robert A. Pollak, Ph.D., the Hernreich Distinguished Professor of Economics in Arts & Sciences and the Olin School of Business, has been the series’ lead organizer for the last seven years. Michael W. Sherraden, Ph.D., the Benjamin E. Youngdahl Professor of Social Development and director of the Center for Social Development in the George Warren Brown School of Social Work, is co-organizer.

Designed to promote interdisciplinary research, the series invites faculty and graduate students from Washington University, the University of Missouri-St. Louis and other area universities to participate.

The series kicked off Sept. 15 with Steven Levitt, Ph.D., professor of economics and social sciences at the University of Chicago, speaking on “The Causes and Consequences of Distinctively Black First Names.”

Upcoming seminars and presentation topics are:

• Sept. 29: Paula England, Ph.D., professor of sociology at Northwestern University, “Unmarried Parents: Determinants of Marrying or Breaking Up by One Year After Birth”;

• Oct. 13: Anne Alstott, professor of law at Yale, “No Exit: What Parents Owe Children and What Society Owes Parents”;

• Oct. 27: Francine Blau, Ph.D., professor of industrial and labor relations and labor economics at Cornell University, “The U.S. Gender Pay Gap in the 1990s: Slowing Convergence”;

• Nov. 10: David Meltzer, Ph.D., associate professor in the department of medicine at the University of Chicago, “Effects of Medical Specialization on Costs and Outcomes: Continuing Results From a Trial of Hospitalists”;

• Nov. 24: Barton Hamilton, Ph.D., professor of economics, management and entrepreneurship at Washington University, “Moving Infertility Treatment From the Bedroom to the Operating Room: Does Competition Outperform Insurance Coverage”; and

• Dec. 8: Aloysius Siow, Ph.D., professor of economics at the University of Toronto, “Who Marries Whom and Why.”

The series is sponsored by the Olin School, GWB and the Center for Social Development, the Center for Interdisciplinary Studies in the School of Law, the Department of Economics and the College of Arts & Sciences.

For a full list of speakers and presentations, go online to and click on the “Academic Seminars” link on the right-hand side.

For more information, contact Pollak (935-4918; or Sherraden (935-6691;

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