Law + Policy

What’s Wrong with U.S. Infrastructure?

For a transportation expert, Robert Cervero used to live a surprisingly sedentary lifestyle. Now a long-distance runner with 66 marathons and 112 ultra-marathons under his belt, he’s an advocate for run-commuting, and building infrastructure for better transit and urban development.

From the Summer 2021 issue of California.

Slippery Slopes and Other Concerns About End of Life Options

As of 2016, the California End of Life Option Act offers legal protection to residents suffering from terminal illness who wish to access medical aid-in-dying, also known as physician-assisted suicide. But the law has hardly quelled the controversy. We spoke with Dr. Guy Micco, co-director of the Program for Medical Humanities at Berkeley who has had a long-standing interest in aging and death, about the ethical concerns in legalizing life-ending treatment.

From the Summer 2021 issue of California.

Polling Suggests An Easy Win for Newsom—So Why Have a Recall?

Mark DiCamillo, the director of the Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies Poll, remembers it all very well. It was 2003, and he was the assistant director of the Field Poll, California’s preeminent political survey. For months, DiCamillo and his fellow staffers had been querying voters on the state’s first-ever special recall gubernatorial election. But Governor Gray Davis, says DiCamillo, wasn’t worried.

Vaccine Passports: Are They Legal—Or Even a Good Idea?

Even as California inches toward economic and social reopening, the virus is running rampant in other states—most notably, Michigan—and outside the U.S., in countries that have received little or no vaccine. There is increasing concern that the highly contagious variants now circulating could fuel a nationwide surge this summer.

In the Wake of the Capitol Riot, A Conversation on Right-Wing Ideology

On January 6, 2021, a violent mob of Trump supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to block the peaceful transfer of power from former President Donald Trump to his successor, President Joe Biden. The insuing riot led to five deaths, hundreds of arrests, and renewed concern over the impacts of right-wing rhetoric.

From the Spring 2021 issue of California.

Letter-Writers Call Confronting Racism in STEM an “Important First Step”

“The false dichotomy of ‘excellence or diversity’ must end,” four UC Berkeley alumni wrote in a letter published in the journal Science in September. “Diversity results in better, more impactful, and more innovative science,” the letter continued, “and it is essential to building novel solutions to challenges faced by marginalized and non-marginalized communities.” 

From the Winter 2020 issue of California.

Swift Justice: The Historic Fight for Gender Equality at Berkeley Law

ELEANOR SWIFT LEFT THE DEAN’S office at Boalt Hall, walked upstairs, and started packing her things. After a promising legal career and eight years as one of Berkeley School of Law’s most beloved professors, she had just been fired—her tenure denied by her overwhelmingly male peers. 

From the Fall 2020 issue of California.

The Election’s Over, But the Battle Is Just Beginning.

The 2020 election is over and, with a significant lead in both the electoral and popular vote, Joe Biden has definitively beaten Donald Trump for the Presidency. That hasn’t stopped Trump, some Republican lawmakers, and many of the 70 million people who voted for him, from claiming that the election was rigged. Indeed, two weeks after Election Day, Trump has yet to concede. While both the Constitution and custom point to Biden taking the oath of office on January 20, unease over the presidential interregnum remains.

Election Polls Are Only 60 Percent Accurate, Which Is 0 Percent Surprising.

For many Americans, Donald Trump’s 2016 victory came as a shock, especially considering how much he’d trailed Hillary Clinton in the polls. Even FiveThirtyEight founder and famed pollster Nate Silver got it wrong. But UC Berkeley business professor Don Moore thinks we should cut Silver some slack.

A Young, Local Activist Vies for Office in Berkeley

Aidan Hill is one of four candidates running to be Berkeley’s next mayor, including incumbent and UC Berkeley alum Jesse Arreguín. Hill, 27, is a UC Berkeley senior transfer and re-entry student pursuing a Bachelor’s degree in political science. They were raised in Fontana, California and obtained an associate’s degree in communications studies at Riverside City College. They currently serve as the vice-chair of the city’s Homeless Commission.

The UC System Has Officially Gone Test Optional. What Now?

IN DECEMBER, KAWIKA SMITH, a 17-year-old high school student from Los Angeles, along with fellow students and advocates, sued the UC system. The goal? Completely reinvent the admissions process by jettisoning standardized testing forever. After a whirlwind year of protests, a pandemic, court battles, and UC policy changes, it seems like they just might pull it off.

From the Fall 2020 issue of California.

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