Pitt People Changing the World
Nicole Constable, director of Pitt's Asian Studies Center and professor of anthropology, is schduled to be the keynote speaker at the Gendered Regimes in Migration conference at Switzerland's University of Geneva in June 2015. Constable was also the keynote speaker at the University of Toronto's Gender, Migration and the Work Care Project 1st Annual Conference, Feb. 28-March 2, 2014.
While participating in an European Union-funded conference in Turkey in spring 2014, Professor Louise Comfort of Pitt's Graduate School of Public and International Affairs (GSPIA) made a reconnaissance visit to the site of a huge mining fire in Soma, in Western Turkey. A world-renowned expert on disaster management and response, Comfort (with the help of a GSPIA alumnus as research assistant and translator) conducted interviews with local and national personnel. The field study was supported by grants from GSPIA, Pitt's European Union Center of Excellence, METU, and the National Science Foundation. At the request of the Turkish government, Comfort served on the officlal team that reviewed the national disaster plan for Turkey to make recommendations for redesign.
B. Guy Peters received an honorary doctorate—his fourth—from Belgium's Katholieke Universiteit on Feb. 2, 2015. During the conferring ceremony, Peters was described as "the most eminent public administration scholar of our time" and an "expert in American government, a leading comparativist, a much-read interpretor and creator of administrative paradigms, and a prolific author of profound research and engaging prose." Peters, the Maurice Falk Professor of American Governance in Pitt's Department of Political Science, has written and edited more than 70 books and has written numerous articles and founded several leading journals, including the European Political Science Review and Governance, an International Journal of Policy, Administration and Institutions.
In recognition of his achievements in philosophy and commitment to German-American cooperation in the field, Adolf Grünbaum, Andrew Mellon Professor of Philosophy of Science, was presented with the Commander's Cross of the Order of Merit of the Federal Republic of Germany in September 2013.
Professor of Art History Franklin Toker's ongoing research related to archaeological excavation below the iconic cathedral in Florence, Italy, has been generating new understanding of Florentine history for four decades. Toker's latest discovery was the subject of his talk, "Archaeological Evidence for the Origins of Christianity in Florence," in September 2013.
In fall 2013, Xiaopeng Li, a doctoral candidate in the Department of Physics and Astronomy, was the first Pitt student selected as a Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics graduate fellow at the University of California, Santa Barbara, one of the world's most renowned theoretical physics institutes.