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Faculty Viewpoints

  • In Defense of (Mathematical) Models

    Epidemiological models have played an influential role in governments’ responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. Yale SOM’s Edieal Pinker takes a look back at one of the most influential models and argues that such rigorous efforts at understanding the likely course of the disease, while imperfect, are critical to good decision making. 

    A chart of ICU occupancy under various scenarios from Imperial College London
  • Rethinking Police Organizations

    Prof. Rodrigo Canales has spent his career investigating how to transform the institutions that shape our lives. Effective police reform, he says, begins with shifting the focus from deterring crime to helping the whole community feel safe.   

    Mexican police officers greeting a family
  • Can Government Contain the Economic Crisis?

    Prof. Andrew Metrick, director of the Yale Program on Financial Stability, says that fighting a crisis is different from economic policymaking in normal times; governments need to be exceptionally generous and not get bogged down in stringent processes that keep money from getting to those in need.

    Closed businesses in Atlantic City, New Jersey, in August 2020. Photo: Alexi Rosenfeld/Getty Images.
  • Please Mr. Postman

    Some have defended cutbacks to the United States Postal Service, weeks ahead of the election, by citing the USPS’s financial struggles. But the postal service was created to provide a public service, writes Yale SOM’s Jeffrey Sonnenfeld, not to turn a profit. 

    A USPS worker wearing a mask puts envelopes in a mailbox while driving past
  • Departures from Convention

    With the Democratic National Convention taking place online, Prof. Jeffrey Sonnenfeld reflects on other conventions Americans have abandoned, and the traditions we’ve let go of, during this tumultuous time.

    The Statue of Liberty at night