UCSC social scientists examine the economic crisis and its social impacts

Professor Michael Dooley
Professor Barry Eichengreen

UC Santa Cruz social scientists will examine and assess the causes and effects of the unprecedented global economic recession during a one-day forum Tuesday, May 22 at University Center.

The Dean's Forum on the Economic Crisis will bring together researchers currently teaching at UC Santa Cruz with other scholars who graduated from UCSC before launching distinguished academic careers.

"Although media attention has focused, understandably, on the financial and regulatory issues underlying the economic crisis, this forum examines the impact of the global recession on many different aspects of society as well as our economic system," said Sheldon Kamieniecki, dean of Social Sciences. "We hope that students who are living through this historical period will gain insights into the effects of the financial crisis on both our economic system, in particular, and various segments of society, more generally."

The morning session from 10 a.m. to noon will analyze the causes of the most dire economic crisis since the Great Depression with politics chair Kent Eaton moderating. Economics professor Michael Dooley, who joined UCSC 20 years ago after working for 20 years with the Board of Governors of the Federal Reserve System and International Monetary Fund, will present an overview of the causes of the crisis and an assessment of current conditions. Commenting will be Ben Crow, chair of sociology, Ronnie Lipschutz, politics; and Nirvikar Singh, economics.

The afternoon session, "Effects of the Economic Crisis and Future Well Being of Society," will take place from 1:30-3:30 p.m. Featured speaker will be Barry Eichengreen (Stevenson, '74, economics and politics), who is renowned for his examination of the world’s financial system at its most perilous turning points. He is now a UC Berkeley professor of economics and political science. Psychology chair Avril Thorne will moderate.

Joining them will be Eva Bertram, politics; Heather Bullock, psychology; Steven McKay, sociology; Robert Meister, social sciences; and Manuel Pastor (Merrill, '78, economics and English literature), a former UCSC professor who now teaches American studies and ethnicity at the University of Southern California.

The forum is part of the Bruce Initiative on Rethinking Capitalism at UCSC. It is sponsored by the Division of Social Sciences, and co-sponsored by the Sury Initiative for Global Finance and International Risk Management.