Research & Action Report, Fall/Winter 2015

tinyglobe Sari Pekkala Kerr, Ph.D., senior research scientist/economist at the Wellesley Centers for Women (WCW), spent four weeks visiting the Research Institute of the Finnish Economy (ETLA) in Helsinki where she used grant money from the Yrjo Jahnsson Foundation to continue her research on the project, “Within and Between Firm Trends in Job Polarization: Role of Globalization and Technology.”

Research & Action Report, Fall/Winter 2015

By April Pattavina, Ph.D. and Linda M. Williams, Ph.D.

The Justice and Gender-Based Violence Research Initiative

The Justice and Gender-Based Violence Research Initiative, led by Co-Directors Linda M. Williams, Ph.D., and April Pattavina, Ph.D., senior research scientists, was recently launched at the Wellesley Centers for Women (WCW). Longtime followers of the Centers may recognize Williams, who was director of research at the Stone Center at WCW from 1996 to 2005. In that role, she led the Navy Family Study, a comprehensive approach to understanding the factors that affect successful and unsuccessful outcomes for Navy families involved with the family advocacy office, as well as the outcomes for adults and children exposed to domestic violence, child physical abuse, or child sexual abuse. Williams co-directed the National Violence Against Women Prevention Research Center and continued her research on the long-term consequences and memories of child sexual abuse. Pattavina comes to WCW from the University of Massachusetts at Lowell, where she collaborated with Williams and colleague Melissa S. Morabito, Ph.D., associate professor, on the national multi-site study of sexual assault case attrition through the criminal justice system that is described in the following interview. She brings an interest in applying advances in information and computer technology to the study of social problems. She has been invited to give presentations and workshops on the use of administrative data for policy analysis and received an award from The Boston Foundation for using data to drive community change.

Research & Action Report, Fall/Winter 2015

By Andrew Levack, M.P.H.

Working with Boys and Men to Promote Gender Equality

Every day I look at the bookshelf next to my desk which displays one my favorite bumper stickers. Its slogan, developed by the Wellesley Centers for Women, states that “a world that is good for women is good for everyone.” As someone who helps develop, implement, and evaluate prevention programs that work with young men, l couldn’t agree more. When we challenge sexism and disrupt patriarchy, everyone benefits—including boys and men.

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Research & Action Report, Fall/Winter 2015

Acceptances, Appointments & Recognition

Ellen Gannett, M.Ed., director of the National Institute on Out-of-School Time at the Wellesley Centers for Women (WCW), is serving on a committee organized by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to plan a workshop on character education. The purpose is to review the literature on character education focusing on out-of-school programs, identify promising practices from the research, and explore the challenges of measuring the efficacy of character education programs.

Research & Action Report, Fall/Winter 2015

Amy Banks, M.D. and Layli Maparyan, Ph.D. were featured speakers during the 2015 See the Girl Summit organized by the Delores Barr Weaver Policy center in Jacksonville, FL, in October. Banks presented “The Power of Healthy Connection: Rewire Your Brain for Stronger Relationships” during which she outlined power of healthy connections and introduced attendees to relational neuroscience and the C.A.R.E Program, featured in her book, Four Ways to Click: Rewire Your Brain for Stronger, More Rewarding Relationships, which helps people use their brains to improve their relationships. She also led a discussion, “Neuroscience Can Change Girls’ Lives” with attendees. Maparyan, the author of two groundbreaking books in the field of womanist studies who has published over 30 journal articles and book chapters in women’s studies, Africana studies, sexuality studies, and psychology, presented on “Womanism and Girls” during the opening session.

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