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

Brooks Family Lecture Series

Oren Cass Discusses the Future of Conservatism with the Rockefeller Center

On Wednesday, April 14th, 2021, Oren Cass, the Executive Director of American Compass, met with Dartmouth students and community members for the Rockefeller Center’s second Rocky Watch event of the spring term. Rocky Watch is a weekly series of live broadcasts hosted by the Rockefeller Center to create a common space for community discussion and intellectual engagement in this time of remote learning.

Constitution Day Program with Boston College Professor Ken Kersch

This Constitution Day, September 17, 2019, Boston College Professor of Political Science Ken I. Kersch delivered the Brooks Family Lecture entitled, “Conservatives and the Constitution.” In addition to the lecture, Professor Kersch had lunch with a group of students.

The lecture focused on a subject explored in his most recent book, Conservatives and the Constitution: Imagining Constitutional Restoration in the Heyday of American Liberalism. The book focuses on the role “originalist” legal theory played in the coalescing of the modern conservative movement and on implications this history carries for modern-day politics. “It is a story about how the conservative movement ultimately becomes a key constituent of the Republican party and ultimately takes over the Republican party.”

Brooks Family Lecture: Bringing America Together

On Jan. 29, Arthur Brooks, president of the American Enterprise Institute, delivered the Brooks Family Lecture for the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences. His talk was titled “Bringing America Together.” Brooks has served as the president of the think tank since January 1, 2009. Before joining AEI, Dr. Brooks was the Louis A. Bantle Professor of Business and Government in the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University, where he taught economics and social entrepreneurship. Prior to his work in academia and public policy, he spent 12 years as a classical musician in the United States and Spain. Additionally, Brooks is a contributing opinion writer for the New York Times and the bestselling author of 11 books on topics including the role of government, fairness, economic opportunity, happiness, and the morality of free enterprise.   

The Brooks Family Lecture: “Ten Years after the Financial Crisis: Causes and Consequences”

As part of the Brooks Family Lecture series, Aaron Klein ’98 gave a lecture entitled “Ten Years after the Financial Crisis: Causes and Consequences”.

Aaron Klein elucidated the consequences and causes of the 2007-2008 financial crisis by detailing how the “perfect storm” of factors combined led to the financial crisis. In particular, he focused on the convergence of the housing bubble and the proliferation of new financial instruments that decoupled loan repayment from profitability origination. He then transitioned into an overview of how repeated warnings about predatory lending practices and subprime mortgages went unheeded. Klein contended that Glass-Steagall would not have prevented the financial crisis because most of the subprime mortgage players—Bear Sterns, Lehman Brothers, AIG, among others—would not have been impacted, and also argued that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were not responsible for the crisis because they did not originate any mortgages.

Trustee Mort Kondracke '60 discusses Jack Kemp

With the presidential election coming up rapidly, politics has once again risen to the forefront of our thoughts. Especially as primaries and caucuses for party nominations go on, the media and the public alike are debating likely nominees and general election scenarios. One reason for this even more intense than usual scrutiny, perhaps, is the great divergence in the ideologies of the candidates running this time. From Bernie Sanders to Donald Trump, the candidates run the whole gamut of political ideologies, and it seems that they are focusing on differentiating themselves from the other party more than ever. This extreme polarization of the candidates and the general populace supporting them is concerning to many.

On March 2, 2016, the Nelson A. Rockefeller Center welcomed Dartmouth alum Morton Kondracke ’60 to discuss Jack Kemp and how his ideology may help turn the country away from such extremism. His remarks in particular focused on specific policies Jack Kemp suggested, and how those may help America revive growth, family prosperity and national morale.

Public Program: Q&A with Former Social Security Commissioner Michael Astrue

Before his talk on October 27 titled "The Coming Battles Over Social Security," Courtney Wong '15 sat down with Michael Astrue for an interview.

Public Program: The Brooks Family Lecture - "The Coming Battles over Social Security" with Michael Astrue

Please join us for the Brooks Family Lecture presented by Michael Astrue entitled, “The Coming Battles over Social Security,” in Filene Auditorium, Moore Hall at 5:30 pm on October 27, 2014.

Social Security has remained a source of controversy as the United States considers how it can reconcile the program’s increasing costs with budgetary demands. The current gridlock raises questions as to how we can address disability and retirement in the United States. Additionally, it is important to discuss what will happen with Social Security looking forward.

Michael Astrue, the former Commissioner of Social Security, will discussing the implications of the insolvency of the disability trust fund in 2016 and the insolvency of the retirement and survivors trust fund in 2033. How will we fix disability? How will we fix retirement?




"Debating Income Inequality: What's the Problem? What's the Solution?" with Greg Mankiw and Jared Bernstein

For the past several decades, income inequality in the United States has grown significantly and has become one of the most-talked about issues among many scholars, economists, and politicians. As we soon enter into the 2014 election cycle, income inequality will surely be an important topic for the candidates to address.

However, there are many misconceptions and myths surrounding income inequality. Why exactly is income inequality a problem and what are the appropriate solutions to try to solve it? The Nelson. A Rockefeller Center, along with the Political Economy Project, is proud to welcome two leading economists, Greg Mankiw and Jared Bernstein, to debate these issues at Dartmouth College.

Greg Mankiw is a professor of economics at Harvard University, a New York Times columnist, and former chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers under President George W. Bush. A former graduate of Princeton University and MIT, he has taught macroeconomics, microeconomics, statistics, and principles of economics. You may recognize him as the author of your textbooks!

Q & A with Former NH Senator Judd Gregg


Former Senator Judd Gregg is serving as Dartmouth's first Distinguished Fellow and  will be teaching, lecturing, and counseling Dartmouth graduate and undergraduate students. Having served as senator for three terms and serving the state of New Hampshire as Governor from 1989 to 1993, Senator Gregg will remain at Dartmouth for three years to engage with students interested in government and public policy. Before presenting his public lecture on Federal Budgeting in a Post-Cliff Environment, Courtney Wong '15 sat down with Senator Gregg for a brief interview. 

Courtney Wong (CW): You've been a guest at Dartmouth many time before -- giving public lectures, speaking to classes, hosting discussion lunches -- what keeps drawing you back to campus? 

Senator Judd Gregg Presents: "Federal Budgeting in a Post-Cliff Environment" at Rockefeller 003 at 4:30 pm on Jan. 28, 2013

In the twilight hours before the impending fiscal cliff, America’s politicians were able to come to a bipartisan compromise and pass the “Cliff Bill.” By passing the bill at the last possible moment, were the politicians heroes or was this a bill that should have been passed before the issue became so pressing? Furthermore, one may wonder if this bill actually fixes the fiscal cliff and its underlying causes, or does it simply kick that can down the road and postpone impending fiscal tragedy?

Senator Judd Gregg served three terms in the U.S. Senate, including time as the Ranking Member of the Senate Budget Committee. He personally dealt with many of the problems that led to the fiscal cliff, and will share his professional knowledge on how this recently passed Cliff Bill will affect fiscal policy, the federal debt, the federal deficit, and the overall federal budgeting process.


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