The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences


Arvind Suresh '19 on Why Planetary Health Matters

Rockefeller Center Mini-Grant recipient, Arvind Suresh '19 was part of the planning committee for the 7th Annual Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) conference, which aims to look at the intersection of human rights with health issues each year. This year's theme was Planetary Health. The following is a recap of Arvind's experience at the conference.

In an era where humans are becoming increasingly interconnected to the environment, we must think more broadly about the implications of changes in the environment and how they impact our health and quality of life. This interdependence between humans, animals, and the environment has spurned a new field called Planetary Health, which was first defined by the Lancet in 2015 as “the achievement of the highest attainable standard of health, wellbeing, and equity worldwide through judicious attention to the human systems… that shape the future of humanity and the Earth’s natural systems.”

Notes from the Field: Allyssa Dobkins '19

Allyssa Dobkins '19 interned at the New York City Council for the Winter 2018 term. The following is an excerpt from her internship report.

The New York City Council is comprised of 51 members, each representing neighborhoods within their districts in boroughs across the city. Together, the City Council works to improve the lives of not only the constituents within their districts, but also for all city dwellers by proposing legislation and actively participating in community-wide efforts that range from fundraisers to delegations. 

Hamza Alsarhan T'18 attends the Emerging Markets Conference

Mini-Grant recipient, Hamza Alsarhan T'18, shares his experience attending the Tuck Emerging Markets Conference during winter term.

The inaugural Emerging Markets Conference brought the Dartmouth community together to explore how private and public sector leaders are driving innovation and growth in the developing world and beyond. This event – Leapfrogging the Developed World: Lessons from Emerging Markets – highlighted the successes of multinational and local organizations addressing both local and global challenges in emerging markets. 

I have always been intrigued by business in the emerging markets. Though it constitutes a large portion of the global growth, business in the emerging markets has not been discussed enough. Participating in the Tuck Emerging Markets Conference in the winter term provided me with several valuable insights. For example, I learned that, according to the International Monetary Fund, about 60% of global growth comes from emerging markets. I also learned that close to half of the world’s population will be living in emerging market cities by the end of the next decade.

Notes from the Field: Debora Han '20

Debora Han '20 interned with Senator Gillibrand’s Legislative Office in Washington, DC for the Winter 2018 term. The following is an excerpt from her internship report.

I was motivated to seek this internship after I spent two consecutive terms studying abroad in China and Scotland, where, for the first time, I was able to view the U.S. from the outside. It struck me that the biggest difference between American society and other societies is its emphasis on citizen involvement: i.e., the “democratic process.” I found myself wondering about the authenticity of this process and the depth of our citizen involvement and wanted to witness both for myself. 

As a legislative intern, I had four main duties: answering constituent phone calls, sorting through and categorizing constituent mail (which is sent to DC from each of the eight regional offices), electronically assigning response letters to constituent mail, and giving Capitol tours to constituents and VIPs. These duties allowed me to interact directly with the electorate, as well as gave me insight to how politicians interact with their constituency.

Todd Henderson on the Importance of Societal Trust in Human Progress

As part of the Thurlow M. Gordon Lecture 1906 Lecture series, the Rockefeller Center hosted Todd Henderson, the Michael J. Marks Professor of Law and Mark Claster Mamolen Research Scholar at the University of Chicago Law School, who gave a presentation in Rockefeller 003 on the importance of societal trust in human progress and the role of trust-creating institutions.

Henderson introduced his presentation with the assertion that the norm of “stranger danger” ends up being highly limiting since individuals ends up forgoing many potential opportunities. Therefore, Henderson asserted that the cultivation of societal trust is the key to prosperous economies since it allows individuals to be more willing to engage in cooperative endeavors. He then transitioned into an overview of the institutions which have historically been guarantors of societal trust, as well as their pitfalls.

Notes from the Field: Sadie Red Eagle '19

Sadie Red Eagle '19 worked as a legislative intern in the office of U.S. Representative Duncan D. Hunter (R-CA 50th District) during the Winter 2018 term. The following is an excerpt from her internship report.

Representative Hunter currently serves on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, House Armed Services Committee, Education and the Workforce Committee, and serves as the chairman on the Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation subcommittee. In his office, I was able to work on projects with the nine legislative assistants, the Deputy Legislative Director, and the Chief of Staff. 

Notes from the Field: Matthew Brown '19

Matthew Brown '19 interned at the Brookings Institution for the Winter 2018 term. The following is an excerpt from his internship report.

This winter I interned at the Brookings Institution, an American research group in Washington D.C. The organization broadly conducts research and education in the social sciences with the mission of improving the welfare of all Americans, strengthening American democracy, and building a more prosperous and cooperative international system.

At Brookings, I was a research intern in the Center for Technology Innovation, an initiative founded by the Institution’s Governance Studies department. While there, I conducted statistical analyses on the state of the “digital divide” in America, assisted in researching and writing white papers surrounding algorithmic bias and black-box algorithms, and conducted in-depth policy research and analysis on the telecommunications and technology sectors of the economy.

Notes from the Field: Olivia Bewley '19

Olivia Bewley '19 interned at the United States Embassy in Rabat, Morocco in the Economics Section for the Winter 2018 term. The following is an excerpt from her internship report.

The Department of State uses embassies to further its own foreign policy goals abroad, but also to observe activities that other foreign missions are conducting. In addition, embassies house other agencies who work closely with those in the Foreign Service and have interests in the host nation. 

The work that I completed ranged from researching bilateral relationships between nations ahead of important meetings to attending conferences as a representative of the U.S. Mission to Morocco. I also wrote summaries of economic news from Morocco used to update our colleagues outside of the country, assisted a colleague with research for a report, and drafted a white paper given to the African Development Bank. My culminating experience in the office was writing a cable, which is the term used for an informative report sent to other embassies around the world, and to headquarters in Washington D.C. 

Notes from the Field: Hannah Pruitt '19

Hannah Pruitt '19 interned at the Brookings Institution for the Winter 2018 term. The following is an excerpt from her internship report.

The Brookings Institution is a nonpartisan think tank in Washington DC that conducts research and education in the social sciences, primarily in economics, metropolitan policy, governance, foreign policy, and global economy and development. At Brookings, I worked in the Economic Policy department, specifically in the Center for Regulation and Markets, where I did research and analysis on financial regulation, payment systems, the future of fintech (financial technology), and federal infrastructure initiatives. 

Notes from the Field: Ethan Fairbanks '19 

Ethan Fairbanks '19 interned at the New Hampshire Supreme Court for the Winter 2018 term. The following is an excerpt from his internship report.

From early January to the end of March 2018, I interned at the New Hampshire Supreme Court, located in Concord, NH. As the highest court in the Granite State, and the state’s only appellate court, the Supreme Court annually considers about eight hundred unique cases. Given the nature of the court and the number of cases heard each year, the Court rules on a wide range of legal issues. For instance, during my internship, the Court heard cases concerning child custody, contract law, and First and Fourth Amendment issues. 

The Court consists of four associate justices and a Chief Justice. I served as an intern to the Honorable Associate Justice James P. Bassett '78. During the internship, I reviewed cases that came before the Court, drafted memoranda on them, and observed oral arguments when I had the time.


The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences