Does the neighborhood you grow up in determine how far you move up the economic ladder?

A new online data tool being made public Monday finds a strong correlation between where people are raised and their chances of achieving the American dream.

Harvard University economist Raj Chetty has been working with a team of researchers on this tool — the first of its kind because it marries U.S. Census Bureau data with data from the Internal Revenue Service. And the findings are changing how researchers think about economic mobility.

It used to be that people born in the 1940s or ’50s were virtually guaranteed to achieve the American dream of earning more than your parents did, Chetty says. But that’s not the case anymore.

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You may have heard about the scientist giving a talk in Geneva presenting male physicists as the “real” victims of gender discrimination.

Professor Alessandro Strumia of Pisa University said “physics was invented and built by men” alongside a number of other claims during his presentation at the otherwise positive and fascinating High Energy Theory and Gender event. The conference was meant to share recent developments in theoretical physics and cosmology alongside talks on gender and equal opportunities.

But this professor’s talk seemed instead to be deliberately provocative, dubiously backed up by slides and doublespeak, with him reinterpreting everything from unequal pay and hiring as hurting men more than women, to women receiving fewer citations than men (I guess he hasn’t read this study on how men cite themselves an awful lot) so that everything pointed to men being the “real” victims of sexism in physics.

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Tara Benally and her 16-year-old son Delaney After Buffalo set up a plastic table alongside the last dusty highway intersection before the Arizona state line.

Here in Monument Valley, in the shadows of the towering red rock monoliths sacred among the Navajo, the two are doing something that’s rarely been done in this part of Utah: conducting a voter registration drive for local Native Americans.

For the first time, Navajo and Utes living here have a chance at being fully represented at the local level when they vote in November. Even though Native Americans are the majority in this 14,750-person county, slightly edging out whites, county commissioner and school board district lines were gerrymandered to give white voters disproportionate power for more than three decades.

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I’m on the phone with an associate history professor at Indiana University, Bloomington, named Ellen Wu. We’re talking about skin color, identity and how people like us — Americans of East Asian descent — can describe ourselves.

Wu and I agree that there are many words we could use: Asian American, East Asian, East Asian American. People with roots from South Asia or Southeast Asia sometimes refer to themselves as brown, which seems like a useful shorthand. But for a bunch of reasons, brown doesn’t work for East Asians. I’m wondering if there’s a parallel word for us.

I pose this question, a little hesitantly: What about yellow?

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In August 2018 officials from Tokyo Medical University admitted to systematically altering medical school admission test scores to disadvantage female applicants. Since 2006 the university had been subtracting points from all exam scores, then adding up to 20 points to those of male applicants, with the explicit goal of reducing the percentage of women entering medical school. (The percentage of enrollees who were women had reached 40% in 2010, and now stands at approximately 30%.)

This systematic discrimination against female medical school applicants is not only sexist and scandalous in its own right — not to mention devastating for the women denied access to the profession they desired — but it constitutes a potential threat to patient safety and public health.

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The issue is nothing new for universities: the need to diversify the student body (and their faculty).

Now every public university in the country can see how well it is serving black students — at least by a few metrics — with a new report card from the University of Southern California’s Race and Equity Center.

And universities need improvement, according to Shaun Harper, the center’s executive director and a prominent race-relations consultant for campuses.

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In a recent viral video, an unidentified white woman in line at a grocery store in Oregon, dressed in a floral romper and black knee-high boots, overheard a black woman’s phone conversation. She believed this black woman was trying to sell food stamps illegally. The exchange became heated, and the white woman was told, in no uncertain terms, to mind her business. “Oh, it is my business,” the white woman responded. “Because I pay my taxes.” She then said something that, quite frankly, stunned me: “We’re going to build this wall.”

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When colleges talk about enrolling more Hispanic students, they tend to think of a “traditional” age group. That’s understandable. After all, in the United States, the median age of Hispanics is 27; for whites, it’s 43.

But what’s understandable isn’t the same as what’s desirable.

And that’s one reason Deborah A. Santiago, who heads up Excelencia in Education, an organization seeking to improve educational outcomes for Latino students, has been working for the past few years to improve colleges’ outreach and service to Hispanic adults.

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