Skip to main content

Faculty Research News

“Figueroa Spectres, 1935-1997,” a photo montage by Philip J. Ethington.

Ghost Stories

July 30, 2015

For Philip J. Ethington, it’s been more séance than research — this long journey back to raise old ghosts and their attendant stories. Ethington, professor of history and political science at USC Dornsife,…

The study findings may offer a tasty salvo against rising obesity rates and health care costs. Photo by Peter Zhaoyu Zhou.

A Gift for Better Eating

July 28, 2015

It’s not easy to lose weight in our “super-sized” nation, but researchers at USC Dornsife and the USC Marshall School of Business have found that even modest incentives to eat smaller portions work in a big…

Material from landslides is filling up riverbeds with sediment. Photo by Greg Willis.

Quakes, Landslides, Now Floods?

July 28, 2015

For Nepal, the hits just keep coming. It started with a magnitude 7.8 earthquake in April, which led to aftershocks that are ongoing even now. All of the shaking triggered what are estimated to be more than 5,000 landslides,…

We spend a third of our lives in slumber — or we should — and USC researchers are studying the phenomenon and learning ways we can all improve our sleep habits.

Science of Sleep

July 24, 2015

In the classic fairy tale, Snow White bites into an apple and slips into a state ofsuspended animation. For her fellow figment of fiction, man-about-the-Catskills character Rip Van Winkle, a sip of moonshine affords the luxury…

Singapore served as the host country for a recent conference on economics.

Behavioral Economics in Singapore

July 23, 2015

Members of the USC Dornsife Center for Economic and Social Research (CESR) are in a long-distance relationship with Singapore. This summer on the island nation, the center and several other organizations held “Frontiers…

Graduate student Melina Butuci and Matthew Michael, professor of biological sciences, study genome instability in primordial germ cells using special fluorescent dyes to help them visualize damage to DNA. Photo courtesy of Melina Butuci.

Germ Cell Genomics Discovery

July 23, 2015

The environment within a cell is a paradoxical balance of order and chaos. Proteins, DNA and countless other biological molecules tumble together in a wildly turbulent system that somehow holds together to engender life. In…

Associate Professor of Political Science Jeb Barnes. Photo by Peter Zhaoyu Zhou.

How Policy Shapes Politics

July 21, 2015

Jeb Barnes, associate professor of political science, recently co-authored How Policy Shapes Politics: Rights, Courts, Litigation, and the Struggle Over Injury Compensation. The book delves into the nation’s increasing…

A landmark agreement struck Tuesday may reinvigorate relations between western nations and Iran, though USC experts Jacques Hymans and Josh Lockman caution that much work remains.

USC Experts on Iran Nuclear Deal

July 15, 2015

The historic accord with Iran announced Tuesday would reportedly limit the nation’s nuclear ability in exchange for lifting international oil and financial sanctions. Experts from USC Dornsife and USC Gould School of Law…

The tiny fossil sponge was just 1.2 millimeters in width, seen here in a high-resolution scanning electron microscope image. Photo courtesy of Zongjun Yin/Nanjing Institute of Geology and Palaeontology.

Fossil Upsets Evolutionary Model

July 7, 2015

Researchers have unearthed a fossil of a sponge, no bigger than a grain of sand, that existed 60 million years earlier than many expected. This is the first time paleontologists have found a convincing fossil sponge specimen…

Poet Claudia Rankine is known for her commitment to social justice. Photo by John Lucas.

Claudia Rankine Joins English Department

July 6, 2015

USC Dornsife has recruited renowned American poet Claudia Rankine as Aerol Arnold Chair of English. She will teach a wide variety of literature and creative writing courses at both the undergraduate and graduate level starting…