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<< 2011 Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec 2013 >>

Call for Submissions - Audible Observatories

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ET Poster Logo

previewEthnographic Terminalia seeks submissions for Audible Observatories, an exhibition to be held in San Francisco in November 2012. Artist-researchers, collaborators, anthropologists and other scholars working in art are encouraged to submit their proposals prior to July 15, 2012.

'Should cannabis be legalised?' - new Economics film launched online

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The policy of ‘depenalising’ cannabis in Lambeth between 2001 and 2002 – where people with small quantities of cannabis were given a warning instead of being arrested – led to an 8% fall in overall crime in the area. That is the main finding revealed by a new documentary, 'Should Cannabis Be Legalised?', now available free online:

The documentary, by production start-up Econ Films, focuses on a study by economists Jérôme Adda, Brendon McConnell and Imran Rasul on the effect of depenalisation on crime presented at the recent Royal Economic Society annual conference. Their research compares crime records for Lambeth with all other London boroughs between 1998 and 2006.

The documentary reports that:

* Crime rates for cannabis possession went up by around 20%.

This more than offset the fall in cannabis arrests because of the change in policy. Moreover, cannabis possession was still higher well after the policy experiment ended. By looking at the neighbouring boroughs, the researchers estimate that a large chunk of this increase (as much as half) was due to people coming from nearby to buy and smoke cannabis in Lambeth – so-called ‘drug tourists’. The rest of this rise is caused by a combination of a) cannabis users buying more cannabis, b) new people starting to using cannabis, and c) police reporting arrests where they would otherwise not have done.

* But other sorts of crime fell by 11%.

Other crime fell by 11% compared with the London average and overall crime fell by 8% (due to the rise in cannabis possession offences). Crime fell in areas such as violence against the person, sexual offences, robbery, theft, fraud, and criminal damage – these account for 97% of crimes in Lambeth. Meanwhile arrests went up by around 3% and prosecutions also went up. As Imran Rasul puts it: ‘this suggests there is an increase in police effectiveness’ – just as the policy had intended.

* House prices in Lambeth were 6% lower than they otherwise would have been.

House price data from the time shows that, despite the fall in crime, Lambeth became a less attractive place to live. So although there was public support for the scheme, there was a case of ‘not in my backyard’.

The documentary argues that this ambivalence towards cannabis can help explain why cannabis is still illegal in the UK despite the growing calls for a change in approach.

Anthropology Students Won Campus MovieFest

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Congratulations to Joshua Lipworth and Megan Laws (3rd Year Anthropology) who have won the world’s largest student film festival, the Campus MovieFest, leading to their film also being shortlisted for the Cannes Film Festivals Short Film Prize.

Jim Durbin

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James Durbin, Honorary Professor UCL and CeMMAP Fellow passed away June 23rd 2012. His contributions to econometrics and statistics were immense and we treasure his association with UCL and CeMMAP.

PhD Alumni Conference 5th-6th July

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Running from the 5th July 2012 - 6th July 2012.

For more information, please see the website.

The Latest Issue of UCL Anthro News is available online

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The academic year 2011/12 has been hugely positive for staff and students alike. The year started with four new lecturers joining us and it has ended with a further four new staff appointments who will join us at the start of the new academic year. Three of these new appointments are entirely new posts, a fact that is the best indication that our Department is thriving, able to provide a hugely vibrant atmosphere that assures excellence in teaching and learning. Newly appointed were also three members of the administrative team, enabling us to provide the very best service to our students and support to our staff.

Lisa Vanhala - Making Rights a Reality? wins two academic prizes

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Lisa Vanhala - Making Rights a Reality?

Lisa Vanhala’s book Making Rights a Reality? Disability Rights Activists and Legal Mobilization was recently awarded two academic prizes. Earlier this year Lisa was awarded the Socio-Legal Studies Association/Hart Early Career Prize. The monograph was also recently recognized as the Best Book in Comparative Politics for 2010  & 2011 by the Canadian Political Science Association.

Professor Richard Bellamy awarded the Serena Medal

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Professor Richard Bellamy

Professor Richard Bellamy has been awarded the Serena Medal by the British Academy. This is awarded annually `for eminent services towards the furtherance of the study of Italian history, literature, art or economics'. Richard is believed to be the first political scientist to get it.

The Politics of Coalition: How the Conservative-Liberal Democrat Government Works by Robert Hazell and Ben Yong

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The Constitution Unit presents our new book The Politics of Coalition as the output of a major study of how the UK’s Conservative/Liberal Democrat Coalition is changing the way Britain is governed. The book aims to provide a practical guide for future coalitions, and to add significantly to the literature on coalition government in Britain.

Richard Bellamy awarded Fellowship at the Hanse-Wissenchaftskolleg (HWK)

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Richard Bellamy awarded Fellowship at the Hanse-Wissenchaftskolleg (HWK) from September 2013 -June 2014.

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