The Academic Minute for 2023.11.27-2023.12.01

The Academic Minute from 11.27 – 12.01

Jay Zagorsky Boston University
Can Important Unions Collapse and Disappear?
Jay Zagorsky is an economist who teaches at Boston University’s Questrom School of Business.  This summer he taught his 10,000th Boston University student.  Professor Zagorsky has published three books and is working on his fourth entitled “The Power of Cash: Why Using Paper Money Is Good For You and Society.”  This is his fifth piece on “The Academic Minute.”

Marie-Claire Beaulieu – Tufts University
Greek Mythology in the Garden
Marie-Claire Beaulieu studies the human experience of the natural world in Greek and Roman mythology, religion, and culture. She makes extensive use of computational methods in her work and has engaged in large infrastructure-building initiatives in the digital humanities, designing collaborative editing and annotation software for the Perseids Project ( Her current project, in collaboration with a team of experts from the humanities, computer science, and the biological sciences, is a digital edition of D’Arcy Thompson’s Glossary of Greek Birds. The project aims to explore the overlap between classical studies and ornithology in analyzing the perception of birds in Greek mythology (

Alauna Safarpour – Gettysburg College
Taking Perspective: Reducing Prejudice in Politics
Dr. Alauna Safarpour is an assistant professor of Political Science at Gettysburg College. Her research interests include race and ethnic politics, prejudice reduction, public opinion, and political participation. Prior to joining the faculty at Gettysburg College, she was a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy and Northeastern University’s Network Science Institute. Her research has been published by multiple peer reviewed journals including Political Behavior, the Journal of Experimental Political Science, The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, Public Opinion Quarterly, Research and Politics, The Washington Post, the Kaiser Family Foundation, The Conversation, and the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Network Open.

James Scott – Albertus Magnus College
Penetrating the Blue Wall of Silence
Dr. James Scott began his law enforcement career with a stint as a New York City (NYC) Correction Officer. Subsequently, transitioning to the Connecticut State Police. After 21 years of policing, Dr. Scott retired and assumed a faculty position at Albertus Magnus College in New Haven, CT. Dr. Scott earned a Doctorate in Criminal Justice from Saint Leo University, and he is a military veteran.

Chris Damman – University of Washington
Nourishing Health and Community: the Microbiome Link
Chris Damman is Clinical Associate Professor and practicing gastroenterologist at the University of Washington in the Department of Medicine/Division of Gastroenterology and editor-in-chief at Gut Bites MD.  He is former Initiative Lead of Gut Health in the Enteric and Diarrheal Diseases team at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.  He holds an M.D. from Columbia University, an M.A. in Molecular Biology & Biochemistry from Wesleyan University, and is board certified in Gastroenterology.  Chris holds research interests focused on food- and microbiome-based therapeutics for non-communicable disease. He is a frequent contributor to the press as an expert in gut microbiome.