IU in the News

A daily digest of media coverage about Indiana University

January 21, 2021
IU in the News is a daily review of the important news stories relating to Indiana University. It is not intended to be an all-inclusive gathering of news, and no editorial revisions are made to the content, which is presented as it was initially published or broadcast.

Big News

Significant number of Americans believe false narratives about validity of election, IU surveys find

This story has been covered by: The Herald Bulletin, WFHB.

IU Voices in the News


VIDEO: Political expert discusses Inauguration Day for President Joe Biden

Steven Webster, Assistant Professor of Political Science at Indiana University in Bloomington, spoke with ABC57's Brian Conybeare about Wednesday's Inauguration Day in Washington, D.C.

The Bloomington Herald-Times

What you need to know about Biden's $1.9 trillion stimulus plan

President Joe Biden has proposed a $1.9 trillion stimulus plan to help the country and the economy recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. It could provide a lot of money to a lot of entities, but it has to get through Congress first. Indiana University economists Kyle Anderson and Andrew Butters assessed the major components of the plan and what's likely to make it into law. ... The amount of money going to individuals was a sticking point in the last relief package, Butters said. He emphasized Biden's plan is still just a plan. Getting it through Congress might require adjustments and that could result in a delay. "I wouldn't be surprised if the number ended up being something that caused this plan to be a plan longer, before it becomes a bill," Butters said. A prominent criticism of the payments is that the money would be better spent targeting households that need it most. "There's a lot in here I think is good and beneficial," Anderson said. "Some of the headlines focused on the $1,400 payments to (individuals) -- that's not nearly as important as extending unemployment benefits and any money spent widely."

The Bloomington Herald-Times

Biden inauguration full of firsts

Joe Biden included white supremacy in a list of challenges facing the nation during his inaugural address Wednesday. It was just one of several firsts that took place during the ceremony in Washington, D.C., where he was sworn in as the 46th president of the United States. "It has never been said in an inaugural address," said Raymond Haberski, professor of American studies and history at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis. "And when presidents talked about white supremacy in the past, it was almost always in reference to other countries." Haberski was on a virtual panel of Indiana University experts (along with Kevin Brown, law professor at IU Bloomington; Elizabeth Bennion, professor of political science at IU South Bend; and Marjorie Hershey, professor emeritus of political science at IU Bloomington).

Related stories: WPTA, WIBC, Fox 59

News and Tribune

Immigration, mass vaccinations, the economy: Will Biden's agenda move?

As part of his nearly $2 trillion relief bill, Biden has proposed increasing the minimum wage from $7.25 to $15 an hour. If approved, and the idea is likely to face stiff resistance, would raising the minimum wage help or hamper job growth? "There is mixed evidence on the impact of minimum wage changes on employment," said Uric Dufrene, Sanders Chair in Business at Indiana University Southeast. "For every study that shows no impact on employment, there is another study that shows a negative impact on employment." A business, like a household, operates on a budget. Every dollar generated in revenue has to cover operating expenses such as labor, financing and a return to the owner’s capital, Dufrene said.

National Geographic

We need better face masks -- and origami might help

Features as simple as changing the angles of the pleats of common surgical masks can dramatically improve fit. This idea is at the heart of Jiangmei Wu's folded mask design. Wu, an origami artist and associate professor of interior design at Indiana University, started experimenting with mask patterns after receiving a call from her brother in Hong Kong as the coronavirus started taking hold in January 2020. "My goal was to find a design that was very simple and easy, and also fits very well," she says. By rethinking the folds at the mask edges, Wu created three designs that each fit slightly different face profiles. She tested multiple options for mask material, landing on an outer mask layer of a type of non-woven polypropylene similar to those used in surgical masks but heavier and stiffer, which allows for folding. (Wu is still testing the mask's filtration capacity and breathability.)

Inside Climate News

Biden signs sweeping orders to tackle climate change and rollback Trump's anti-environment legacy

Re-establishing the working group will be an important part of U.S. climate policy, said Maureen Cropper, a University of Maryland economics professor who was co-chair of a National Academies of Sciences' panel that reviewed the working group's efforts in 2016 and 2017. The working group had, during the Obama administration, provided estimates of the social cost of carbon that were used by federal agencies, states and other countries, she said. She said that accurate calculations are "essential to be able to balance the benefits of reducing carbon emissions against the costs of the regulation." The factors can also be used to evaluate "the full social cost of fossil fuels versus renewable energy sources." Indiana University professor David Konisky, whose research focuses on U.S. environmental and energy policy, agreed. Agencies "will have to account for the implications for their actions on climate change," he said. "One of the most significant implications is that the benefits of regulations that result in reductions of greenhouse gas emissions will be fully valued in cost-benefit analyses."

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