The Idea Department

The Idea Department is a space for the discussion of politics, economics, global affairs, ethics, international relations, and related topics - brought to you by the staff and interns at Project Syndicate.
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Cadadevall and Fang argue that the “perverse” incentive program for scientific exploration is damaging the credibility of science, altogether. In their article, they suggest a solution that would heal the field of science. 

Check out the article at Project-Syndicate to find out the solution. 

Supporters of austerity such as US Congressman, Paul Ryan, promote the idea of austerity to improve morale. However, professor and author, Robert J. Shiller, argues otherwise. He discusses why employers should avoid ‘laying off’ employees, and should consider reducing the number of hours in the work week instead. 

Read his article at Project-Syndicate and tell us: Does austerity improve or weaken public morale?

Ms. Watanabe struggled to make it up the economic ladder. With much success, now she is posed with the question: To start a family and potentially give up her economic success or pursue being an officer for an exchange-listed company? In her article, Yuriko Koike writes,

Curious to know what Ms.Watanabe chooses? Check out the article at Project-Syndicate

In one of his latest featured articles, Nobel Laureate in economics and Professor Joseph E. Stiglitz discusses the recent United States Supreme Court case arguments concerning the issue of intellectual-property rights, specifically in terms of human genetic testing.

Intellectual-property rights are rules that we create – and that are supposed to improve social well-being. But unbalanced intellectual-property regimes result in inefficiencies – including monopoly profits and a failure to maximize the use of knowledge – that impede the pace of innovation.


His heated arguments discussing the domestic and global impacts of cases such as these are creating quite a stir over at Project-Syndicate. Go on over and check it out.

(Illustration by Paul Lachine)

Exaggerated fear of outside enemies has always been part of the American political landscape. The “nation of immigrants” was traditionally regarded as a refuge from danger. The evil outside world should not be able to touch the Land of the Free. When it does – Pearl Harbor, September 2001 – all hell breaks loose.

Professor and Author Ian Baruma on how the American government and other authorities respond to homegrown terrorism.

To read more, check out Ian’s featured article “America’s Enemy Within” over at Project-Syndicate.