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A PhilThe mix-up

first_imgStudents have criticized the university administration responsible for the theology preliminary examinations caused by a mix-up with the Church history paper. Cherwell can confirm that a theology paper entitled ‘Church History’ had already been seen by some candidates in their collections at the beginning of the term. A University spokesman explained how the mix-up came about. “A re-sit paper was prepared [in Trinity last year] for a single candidate but the candidate withdrew so the paper wasn’t used. However it was been published online with the rest of the this year’s papers.” Pembroke student Andris Rudzitis recounted his experience, stating “The Church history paper was almost identical to Trinity term 2011. The questions were almost verbatim to last years Trinity exam. Some people at other colleges had already seen that paper and answered three of the nine optional questions on the paper, so they had a massive advantage.”When asked about the cause of the mix up a University spokesperson said “The person who set the exam did not realise that last year’s paper had been published online and had been seen in collections”However, the University press office emphasized the University’s commitment to ensuring examinations were conducted fairly. “The University wants to ensure that the examination system is fair and does not disadvantage any group. Any concerns are raised with the Proctors, who are the University officers responsible for overseeing the conduct of examinations.” To counterract potential discrepancies in results, the University discounted the paper entirely. “The Church History paper was set aside by the Proctors who authorised that the Prelims could be marked on the basis of the remaining two papers.”“The candidates were also given the option to sit another Church History paper, but the latter option was declined by all the candidates concerned.”A spokesman for the University said “We want to apologise for any distress caused by this mistake, but the action we took ensured that, overall, the examination was fair.”Despite being given the resit the paper, one student complained that because the marks for the Greek exam were not calibrated to come in line with other essay-based papers, the average overall mark could be significantly boosted for single-honour Theologians. “This resulted in a high amount of distinctions for straight theologians, and thus was a disadvantage to those doing joint honours which doesn’t include Greek.”Rudzitis referred Cherwell to examination results from previous years pointing out that the Church History paper usually has a higher average score than the other papers which may have resulted in the average score for single honour Theology students markedly lower this year.last_img read more

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A cake too far?

first_imgFor last-minute Halloween inspiration, see a great top 10 list of horror cakes here tinyurl.com/yjacvon with recipes and guides. (The ’Kitty Litter Cake’, however, may be taking things too far!)last_img

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News story: Lord Ahmad’s Eid-ul-Adha message

first_img Email [email protected] Follow Foreign Office Minister Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon @tariqahmadbt Further information The Prime Minister’s Special Envoy on Freedom of Religion or Belief & Minister of State at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office Lord Tariq Ahmad of Wimbledon said: For journalists Follow the Foreign Office on Instagram, YouTube and LinkedIn Media enquiries I join with Muslims in Britain and across the world to celebrate the holy festival of Eid and extend my best wishes and prayers on the blessed occasion of Eid-ul-Adha. This Eid let us remember not only does Eid-ul-Adha mark the end of the holy pilgrimage of the Hajj, it is also about sacrifice and obedience to God. The ultimate message within the story of Prophet Abraham and of his beloved son is that we should all strive towards putting others before ourselves. So, as we celebrate with our loved ones, let us remember those the world over who are affected by conflict, hunger and great injustices. Last month, I was honoured when the Prime Minister appointed me as her Special Envoy for Freedom of Religion or Belief, to help promote inter-faith respect and dialogue internationally and to stand up against the persecution of people because of their faith or belief. I am proud to live in a country where religion and belief is celebrated and people from all faiths and none are free to practice as they wish. Our country, the United Kingdom is an open and respectful society, a truly multi-ethnic, multi-faith democracy. A country that values people’s freedom to be themselves, and practise their religion or belief, without fear, without prejudice, without persecution. Yet, we must never be complacent, be it at home or abroad, in rooting out intolerance and standing up and defending the right of freedom of religion or belief for all. So on this joyous and special occasion of Eid-ul-Adha, from my family to yours, with prayers for peace and humanity, Eid Mubarak. Follow the Foreign Office on Twitter @foreignoffice and Facebooklast_img read more

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David Byrne On A Talking Heads Reunion: “You Can’t Have It All”

first_imgEvery now and again, it seems that a conversation about the Talking Heads reuniting comes up. And, time and time, again, that never happens. Well, in a recent interview with The Creative Independent, David Byrne discussed his former band in terms of his passion for working on new projects, as the artist just unveiled a new interactive art collaboration and experiment that is being featured in Silicon Valley.David Byrne Opens An Interactive Art Exhibition & Science Laboratory To Further Research In NeuroscienceIn the interview, Byrne elaborated on why a Talking Heads reunion doesn’t specifically interest him: “[A] Talking Heads reunion might be incredibly successful for a specific generation, or maybe for many generations….It would make me a lot of money and get a lot of attention. It would also probably be quite a number of steps backwards as far as being perceived as someone who does a lot of different things.”He went on to say, “I feel like I have to sacrifice something, whether it’s money or name recognition or whatever, in order to be able to do a little bit more of what I’d want to do….In other words, you can’t have it all.”And, there you have it. Keep those expectations very low.[via The Creative Independent]last_img read more

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Lake Street Dive Announces January 2019 Tour Dates

first_imgToday, Lake Street Dive has announced a number of new tour dates in January 2019 in support of their new album, Free Yourself Up, with support from Mikaela Davis. The Boston-native, Brooklyn-based band has been on a tear in 2018, performing over 80 shows thus far including a successful headlining gig at Red Rocks Amphitheatre and dozens of sold-out shows across the country. The group also recently announced a three-night, two-city New Year’s Eve run to cap off 2018.The newly announced Lake Street Dive shows span from January 4th to January 25th, with the tour kicking off with shows in Norfolk, Virginia, on January 4th and Carrboro, North Carolina, on January 5th. By way of a stop in Columbia, South Carolina, on January 7th, the group will head south for stops in Charlotte, North Carolina; Athens, Georgia; and Charleston, South Carolina from the 10th through 12th. After a show in Macon, Georgia, on January 14th, the band will begin a five-night run through Florida from January 15th through 21st. To close out their new January plans, the band will stop in Birmingham, Alabama, on January 23rd before a closing out the tour with a two-night run in Louisiana including shows in Lafayette on January 24th and New Orleans on January 25th.Tickets for Lake Street Dive’s newly announced January 2019 tour dates go on sale on Friday, October 5th. For more information and ticketing, head to the band’s website here.last_img read more

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Gateway to inclusion

first_imgWhen tear gas and bottles flew on the streets of Ferguson, Mo., in the summer of 2014, it was the latest chapter in a history of racial tension in the St. Louis area stretching back to the Missouri Compromise of 1820. Situated at the pressure point of the sectional hostility that flared into the Civil War, St. Louis also sited an iconic housing project that was turned into rubble along with other urban planning failures of the mid 20th century.“In some ways, the story of St. Louis is the story of America,” Diane Davis said in an interview. That story is one of changing streetscapes and residential patterns, and of exclusion — spatial and racial. A native of St. Louis County, Davis is chair of the Harvard Graduate School of Design’s (GSD) urban planning and design department. Today (March 30) through Friday, the department brings together planners, politicians, activists, and academics from St. Louis and Boston for “Voices & Visions of St. Louis: Past, Present, Future” at Gund Hall. The event begins with a keynote panel this evening at 6:30.Presented in partnership with the Mellon-funded Divided City Initiative at Washington University in St. Louis, the conference is meant to start a years-long conversation across 1,000 miles and a variety of disciplines. The conference explores how planning and design decisions historically have marginalized African-Americans in St. Louis, why that matters to cities across the country, and what 21st-century planners and designers can do about it.“I see this event as speaking to issues that a lot of people in America care about,” Davis said. “But it’s also speaking to the commitment of the GSD and the urban planning and design fields to address some of the most important social and political problems of our times, and to do so in an interdisciplinary, design-informed way.”A contested stateThe very creation of Missouri was an early step in the long, sad march to the Civil War, as the GSD conference’s first Thursday morning panel will discuss. In the run-up to Missouri’s admission to the Union as the 24th state, the territory was a political football between pro- and anti-slavery camps in Congress. It entered, in 1821, as a slave state, but one that also allowed for freed blacks and “mulattoes.” The U.S. Supreme Court struck down that compromise in 1857 with Dred Scott v. Sandford, which ruled against a slave who, brought to St. Louis, had sued for his freedom. The case quickened the escalation of the North-South conflict.During the war, Missouri was divided between supporters of the Confederacy and the Union. “That split was, in a way, a split between the rural, agrarian south of Missouri and the industrial north, with St. Louis geographically straddling these two sides,” said Davis.With that background in mind, the conference will move into the 20th century with the panel “Modernism and Its Discontents,” focusing on planning interventions such as St. Louis’ ill-fated Pruitt-Igoe housing project. Over a tract of 57 acres, Pruitt-Igoe’s 33 buildings, each 11 stories tall, were hailed as a clean and modern alternative to the tenements they had replaced. The first residents moved in in 1954.“St. Louis had some spectacular modernist failures, which are also part of the history of struggle over race and space in the city,” Davis said. “Pruitt-Igoe was modeled after the superblocks approach to planning that people like Le Corbusier had introduced — big high-rises surrounded by open areas, or ‘towers in a park’ … Although this approach was common several decades ago in the field of planning and design, superblock social housing is now considered an object lesson of what not to do.“But the problems of Pruitt-Igoe extended far beyond the typology itself. Just for example, the designers failed to locate bathrooms on the first floor, a problem for kids playing outside in the projects’ open spaces. Elevators often were dysfunctional and, coupled with other maintenance problems, the site deteriorated rapidly. It was also geographically isolated in a part of St. Louis that was not well connected to the rest of the city.”By the 1960s, federal policies and cost-cutting measures (especially insufficient maintenance) combined to hasten white flight (and black middle-class flight), emptying out much of the project and leading to decay. By 1971, the federal and state governments agreed to demolish the entire development. This was accomplished with detonated implosions between 1972 and 1976, notoriously just two decades after Pruitt-Igoe opened.Different factions have read different morals into the project’s fall: for example, that it showed the futility of the federal government or the fatal flaws in modernist architecture. But the story is not so simple, said Davis. In many cities, low-rise public housing projects have succeeded, and modernist high-rises are filled with the wealthy.Even as the federal government facilitated the construction of low-income housing in urban neighborhoods, it encouraged — with highways and mortgage insurance — the middle-class to move out to the suburbs, in this case to growing towns in St. Louis County. (The city of St. Louis sits within the county geographically but is not connected to it politically.) The conference’s next panel will examine how race affects today’s St. Louis region, where conflicts are built into the divided county-city system.In the wake of Pruitt-Igoe, many of the county’s surrounding towns passed zoning laws preventing high-rise construction, said Davis, “which was a way of keeping African-Americans out of the community, through design restrictions.” As for towns such as Ferguson, which is now mostly black, Davis said, “Some of the problems of policing have to do with the fact that these small cities have no tax base. And so police generate revenue by giving traffic tickets,” which can lead to confrontation between black citizens and officers.What’s next?There is hope, though. On Thursday afternoon, conference attendees will start discussing “the new ideas that can make a difference and make St. Louis a more just, equitable, and more livable city,” Davis said. The event continues Friday with an address by Atyia Martin, Boston’s chief resilience officer, and a showcase of GSD student work presented by Designing Justice, a student-led initiative focused on equity, race, and social justice.Asked to hazard a hint as to the shape of some of the solutions that planners and aspiring planners might propose to the thorny dilemmas of racial and spatial exclusion, Davis responded “No!” with a laugh. “But we’ll find out more at the conference.” The point of the gathering, she went on, is to assemble planners, scholars, and others from different disciplines — thinkers and doers who might not otherwise be talking to one another — and see what lessons and ideas come out of that over time.“There is no easy fix. You can’t change history,” Davis said, “but I do think planning has a lot to offer with respect to charting a different future. Part of this has to do with engaging people more in determining the fate of the places they live in, rather than having those ideas imposed on them.”last_img read more

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Tackling high Rx prices

first_img Yet this all-or-nothing approach may not be to patients’ advantage Pharma-to-doc marketing a vulnerability in opioid fight Related First-time opioid prescriptions drop by 50 percent Harvard-Michigan summit on issue explores addiction, policy The U.S. has the world’s highest per-person spending rate on prescription drugs — a fact that ranges from problematic to life-threatening for consumers of these drugs.A new course launched this year on the HarvardX online platform, “The FDA and Prescription Drugs: Current Controversies in Context,” provides a free opportunity to learn and discuss how the Food and Drug Administration operates, how it regulates drug pricing, and what that looks like in an international context. Last week, a few of the faculty behind the course brought this information into the community, presenting some of the coursework to a group of Allston-Brighton and Greater Boston residents at the Harvard Ed Portal.Brigham and Women’s epidemiologist Ameet Sarpatwari; Jonathan Darrow, a lawyer with the Brigham’s division of pharmacoepidemiology and pharmacoeconomics; and Ariel Stern, an assistant professor at Harvard Business School focusing on health care management, each gave a short presentation on their area of research related to prescription drug costs. The three then sat on a panel moderated by Harvard-MIT Regulatory Science Fellow Michael Sinha, and took audience questions about the FDA, drug costs, and possible options for regulation.The panel shed light on common misconceptions about prescription drugs and offered some thoughts on reforming the current system.Here are six key takeaways:Consumers should buy the generic version of a drug whenever possible.The U.S. already spends more per person on prescription drugs than any other country, and this spending is expected to increase by 6 percent over the next decade, according to Sarpatwari’s research. The prices of generic drugs, however, have actually decreased in recent years and are not expected to rise the way brand-name drugs will.“Try to be in the 90 percent of the market that uses generics,” Darrow urged the audience, explaining that a generic drug typically yields identical or very similar results to the brand names.Medicare and Medicaid’s guaranteed coverage mandate drives prices up.“The federal government has exacerbated the pricing problem by requiring guaranteed coverage of certain drugs,” Darrow said. Medicare and Medicaid have no leverage to negotiate prices for these drugs, because pharmaceutical companies know they have to cover them, he explained.By and large, pharmaceutical companies are not turning their profits into research and development of new life-saving drugs.Sarpatwari said he has often heard the argument that drug prices need to be high so pharmaceutical companies can recoup the losses from innovation costs. But research and development is only about 17 percent of a pharmaceutical company’s budget, on average, and, perhaps more important, innovation by pharmaceutical companies is not usually what brings significant new drugs to the market.“The drugs that tend to be the most transformative, the most innovative, are those that come from public-sector research institutions,” he said. “The innovation/access tradeoff has been sold to the public in a fear-mongering way, and we need to better understand what the tradeoff actually is.” These companies go to great lengths to prevent competition, which is not in the best interest of patients.With the current patenting system, the FDA can allow a pharmaceutical company to have a “virtual monopoly” on a new drug for more than 12 years, Sarpatwari said.On top of this, he added, pharmaceutical companies often apply for patents for some component of the drug, such as a tablet coating or drug combination, on top of the original patent, to prevent competitors from creating a similar drug. They also sometimes pay generic drug makers a settlement to delay releasing the generic, or buy a biotech company that is working on a drug similar to theirs.The U.S. can learn a lot — good and bad — from other countries’ drug markets.Most of Stern’s talk focused not on the U.S., but on Germany. In 2011 the country implemented, for the first time, a price-regulation system that included a government-created assessment of health benefits for all new drugs on the market. If a drug is determined to have a clear added benefit to patients compared with similar drugs, its manufacturer goes into price negotiations with the German regulatory organization. If the drug has no clear novel benefit, it is given a price cap with no negotiation.This way, Stern said, “The drugs that cause better outcomes are the only ones with a higher cost.”It’s important to know what you don’t know. The HarvardX course was created because prescription drug costs impact the lives of many Americans, but there isn’t a lot of transparency around why these costs are so high. Community members who attended the Ed Portal discussion said it was a reminder of the current FDA system’s myriad issues. Newton resident Gordon Szerlip, who works with senior citizens in Brighton, said the panel confirmed a lot of what he had suspected. “We have a huge issue with prescription costs, and there’s not a simple, easy solution,” he said. “It requires experts like the people we had on stage.”last_img read more

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Denmark, European Union’s largest oil producer, to phase out production by 2050

first_imgDenmark, European Union’s largest oil producer, to phase out production by 2050 FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享Bloomberg:Denmark, the European Union’s biggest oil producer, will stop offering new licenses in the North Sea and phase out production altogether in 2050 as it takes an historic step toward a fossil-fuel free future.Climate and Energy Minister Dan Jorgensen told reporters in Copenhagen that he expects the decision to “resonate around the world.”The Social Democrat government reached an agreement with a majority in the parliament late on Thursday. The deal means a planned 8th licensing round will be abandoned, as will all future exploration, Jorgensen said. About 150 million barrels of oil and equivalents that would have been drilled by 2050 will remain beneath the ocean’s surface.For oil and gas companies currently operating in Danish waters, terms and conditions will remain unchanged until production stops in 2050. The decision will cost Denmark about 13 billion kroner ($2.1 billion), according to estimates by the energy ministry.For Denmark, the decision to end its North Sea exploration fits into an agenda that has made protecting the climate a priority. The country targets cutting carbon emissions by 70% in 2030, compared with 1990 levels.Jorgensen pointed to Europe’s desire to be carbon neutral by 2050, “which means it needs to end its reliance on fossil fuels. It’s my clear impression that this development will speed up,” he said.[Morten Buttler]More: Denmark to end North Sea oil production in milestone deallast_img read more

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Weekend Pick: Snowshoe Gravity Series Downhill Mountain Bike Race

first_imgThere is a bit of irony in the rise in popularity of downhill mountain biking in the Southeast and mid-Atlantic. The sport is booming right now, in no small part due to the Great Recession that began in 2008. Downhill mountain biking has been popular for a long time, but mostly confined to the Mountain West and Pacific Northwest where hardcore and extreme skiers get their jollies hucking bikes around during the off-season. In this part of the country, the legacy of mountain biking has been mostly endurance and cross country based, with little in the way of downhill trails, courses, or even instruction. But that began to change in a major way during the late 2000s as resorts began to feel the pinch of the economic downturn. Looking for a four season revenue stream, resorts that were only concentrating on skiing during the winter, began to invest in mountain biking infrastructure. They committed to machine groomed, downhill trails, and began spinning the lifts during the summer to get bikers to the top so they could bomb down to the bottom, paying a premium for the privilege. Now the sport is on the rise in the Blue Ridge, with multiple options of where to ride and pros coming out of the region and standing on podiums.So, which came first, the chicken or the egg? In this case it matters not, for the people have spoken, and downhill is most likely here to stay.At first glance to the casual observer, or even the amateur cross-country mountain biker, downhill racing appears to be for the certifiably insane with riders hitting speeds up to 30 miles per hour, launching and dropping cliffs and jumps, wearing intense body armor, and riding 30 pound bikes that resemble motorcycles more than bicycles. That being said, it looks like a heck of a lot of fun.You can get a taste of what downhill mountain biking is all about this weekend at West Virginia’s Snowshoe Mountain Resort during the second leg of the Snowshoe Gravity Series. Whether you just want to check out the riding, ride the race yourself, or post up at the gnarliest spot and watch the carnage, this event will have it all. The Giant Slalom and Downhill race practice will be Saturday, with the Downhill race going off on Sunday beginning at 11:30pm. With cash and gear prizes on the line, you know the riders will be giving it their all so expect spectacular rides and spectacular crashes throughout the day.View Larger Maplast_img read more

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Bar Leaders Workshop set for Ponte Vedra Beach

first_imgBar Leaders Workshop set for Ponte Vedra Beach Bar Leaders Workshop set for Ponte Vedra Beach May 1, 2002 Regular Newscenter_img The Annual Bar Leaders Workshop is moving north to sun-kissed beaches and pristine golf courses to Ponte Vedra Beach, that is — home of the PGA Tour Headquarters and The Players Championship on the Sawgrass Stadium Course.Workshop planners hope the northeast Florida seaport will draw voluntary bar leaders and staff to the educational leadership retreat. The workshop will be held July 26-27 at the Sawgrass Marriott Resort. Registration materials will be sent to bar leaders and staff in early June.“In addition to the leadership workshops, the elegant resort offers recreational and cultural activities for the entire family,” said Diane Gill, executive director of the Jacksonville Bar Association, the host bar for the annual workshop. “We hope to continue to provide creative, practical approaches to managing voluntary associations.”The annual program, sponsored by The Florida Bar Voluntary Bar Liaison Committee, Florida Council of Bar Association Presidents, and Florida Council of Bar Executives, gives voluntary bar officers and staff an opportunity to network and discuss problems faced by the attorneys who volunteer as members of the association on a local level.Florida State University President Sandy D’Alemberte has agreed to speak at the opening plenary session on the importance of public service. Other workshop topics include member recruitment, building Web sites, association fundraising, and leadership development. Last year’s workshop, held in Sarasota, drew more than 110 voluntary bar leaders from a host of large, small, specialty, and minority associations. “We hope to meet or exceed the wonderful time we had in Sarasota,” said Bill Joel, president-elect of the Jacksonville Bar Association, who said the workshop gave participants the opportunity to meet and interact with other bar leaders from around the state. “ It was very beneficial to learn how other voluntary bar associations have addressed issues that face all of our organizations, such as how to generate non-dues revenue and how to increase membership.”Sponsorships are available. Contact the Bar’s Toyca Williams at (850) 561-5764 for more information.last_img read more

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