Afghan people are much more con-cerned with the corruption theywitness and experience on a day-to-day basis.“This is where it gets really hardfor both the Afghan governmentand the U.S. government to dealwith corruption,because the thingsthat most deflate people’s publicopinion are the everyday local cor-ruption,”Maggiano said.In addition to legal definitions,avariety of other factors, includingreligious and cultural issues, makedefining corruption particularly dif-ficult in Afghanistan, he said. As aresult, it becomes even more chal-lenging to apply those definitions togovernment transactions betweenthe U.S.and Afghanistan.Addition-ally,U.S.actions to fight corruptionin Afghanistan raise the issue of how much international pressure isacceptable.While Maggiano focused onAfghanistan specifically, he alsotouched on the existence of corrup-tion in other countries around theworld and cited Singapore as a na-tion that has effectively decreasedcorruption. Looking at the waycountries have successfully handledcorruption could also help in find-ing solutions to the situation inAfghanistan,he said.All things considered,Afghanistan has made manystrides,among them the creation of the High Office of Oversight,Mag-giano said.But he added that a lackof transparency and mistrust of theoffice still present significant prob-lems.Christina Luu J.D.‘13 saw simi-larities between Afghan corruptionand her parents’ accounts of thecorruption they witnessed in theirnative Vietnam.Luu’s recent trip toMexico, which opened her eyes toother cases of corruption, sparkedher interested in the talk.“It was interesting to hear the at-titudes of the people inAfghanistan,”Luu said.Daniel Lewis J.D.‘12 is co-exec-utive director of the AfghanistanLegal Education Project,an organ-ization made up of Stanford lawstudents who write and distributelegal textbooks about Afghan law.Lewis thought it was particularlyinteresting to hear about the differ-ent definitions of corruption andthe clash between the differentbranches of the Afghan govern-ment in addressing this problem.These branches “don’t always workhand in hand,”he said.Lewis also acknowledged thegreat strides that have been made.“It’s reassuring to know peopleare dedicated and working to solvecorruption,”he said.
Contact Nardos Girma at email@example.com.
Continued from front page
Stanford tops list of “dream schools”
By THE DAILY NEWS STAFF
Stanford is the No. 1 “dreamschool” for students, according to aPrinceton Review survey released onThursday.The University took secondplace among parents,trailing Harvard.Students ranked Harvard, NewYork University and Princeton behindStanford. Princeton ranked behindStanford among parents, followed bythe Massachusetts Institute of Tech-nology.In the same survey, 69 percent of high school respondents reportedstress levels of “high” or “very high,”an increase of 13 percent since 2003.Moreover,72 percent of respondentsreported that the economy affectedtheir college choices, and 86 percentsaid that financial aid is “very neces-sary.”This year,8,219 students and 3,966parents participated in the survey,which the Princeton Review has con-ducted annually since 2003.
— Joshua Falk
The Stanford Daily
Faculty recruitment remains strong
Blood test could replace biopsy
By JOSHUA FALK
Researchers at the School of Medicine have found that an in-crease in the presence of a heartdonor’s DNA in a recipient’s bloodis an early indicator of organ rejec-tion.“In the patients who never re-jected, we saw a very constant lowlevel of donor DNA in the recipi-ents’ blood, in marked contrast topatients who rejected,”said HannahValantine,professor of cardiovascu-lar medicine.Valantine co-authored the studywith professor of bioengineeringStephen Quake.Their findings werepublished Monday in the Proceed-ings of the National Academy of Sci-ences.Over the last 40 years, rejectionin heart transplant patients has beenmonitored by taking small heartbiopsies and analyzing them for evi-dence that the body is attacking theheart,Valantine said.This procedureis performed up to 12 times in theyear following the transplant and isquite uncomfortable for the patient.The study implies that an ordi-nary blood test could eventually re-place these surgical biopsies.“The beauty of this new test isthat it bypasses the need to monitorthe immune response,” Valantinesaid.The team discovered that thelevel of a donor’s DNA rises consid-erably before a heart biopsy showsevidence of a problem.“We think we can pick up the re-jection a lot earlier, and we can seehow it improves after a patient hasbeen treated for rejection,” Valan-tine said.“This has huge implications forthe patient,” she said, noting thattreating heart rejection has manyside effects.“If we were to pick thisup early,we would not need to treatthe patient with such heavy anti-re-jection therapy.”The research team also includedThomas Snyder, a research associ-ate in Quake’s lab, and KiranKhush,an instructor in cardiovascu-lar medicine.Stanford’s collaborative atmos-phere played an important role inValantine and Quake’s research.“This is a very interestingdemonstration of the huge advan-tage of being at Stanford with theopportunity to collaborate,” Valan-tine said.When Valantine read Quake’spublication on detecting fetal ab-normalities by examining fetal cellsin the mother’s blood, she noticedparallels with organ transplant,since both involve the presence of aforeign protein in the blood.The researchers’ approach,which they call genome transplantdynamics (GTD),can be applied toother organ transplants, reducingthe need for invasive techniques,Valantine said.“There has been very littleprogress in reducing chronic rejec-tion,”Valantine said.“We now havethe potential to pick up early mark-ers of chronic rejection and therebyintervene and reduce chronic rejec-tion and organ lapse.”
Contact Joshua Falk at firstname.lastname@example.org.
By JANELLE WOLAK
The University has experienced“very high retention rates and highrecruitment success” in hiring of junior faculty, according to ViceProvost for Faculty Developmentand Diversity Karen Cook. Faculty,however, have cited several excep-tions to Stanford’s overall success inthis area.In fact, the goal of the FacultyDevelopment and Diversity Officein recent years has been twofold:toincrease the number of women andminority faculty members and to ad-dress the reasons why a facultymember might choose to leave Stan-ford. Only 11 percent of Stanfordfaculty members are minorities,and25 percent are women.According to the “Guide to Re-cruiting and Retaining an Excellentand Diverse Faculty at Stanford,”faculty recruitment searches are re-quired to make an extra effort tofind qualified women and minoritycandidates,and one member of eachdepartmental search committeemust serve as a diversity officer.Fur-thermore, if the search committeeidentifies a minority or female can-didate who is qualified but not thetop candidate, the committee is en-couraged to explore the possibilityof recruiting this candidate alongwith the top candidate. Depart-ments and schools may capitalize onopportunities to hire “equally quali-fied candidates from underrepre-sented groups.”Apart from these issues,Stanfordfaculty report very high satisfactionrates. Eighty percent of faculty re-spondents in a 2008 quality of lifesurvey described themselves as“very” or “somewhat satisfied” atStanford.In a similar Harvard study,85 percent of faculty members de-scribed themselves as “somewhatsatisfied.”And yet professors at all stages of the tenure track cited the same rea-son that might push them to leavethe Farm: a desire for a more sup-portive work environment.For assistant professor of musicAnna Schultz, who was hired in2010, the University offers advan-tages and disadvantages in this re-spect.“I came here because I felt a realsense of support for research andteaching,” she said. “If I get a bigidea for a conference or a creativeidea for teaching, I know that thereis the support to make it happenhere.”But sometimes that’s notenough.“There is a lot of support for indi-vidual projects, but there are fewerprojects in which people come to-gether collaboratively,“ Schultz ex-plained. “It is possible that there isless of a sense of community here.”The University tries to addressthese problems by periodically as-sessing quality of life through sur-veys and focus groups as well ascounseling and mentoring youngfaculty. It also rewards faculty forproductivity via salary incentivesand other forms of compensation.However, potential hires faceother deterrents, notably the prob-lem of dual careers. The quality of life survey reported that 41.7 percentof incoming professors had troublefinding appropriate employment inthe area for their partner or spouse.At Stanford,the Office of FacultyDevelopment and Diversity ad-dresses the dual-career problem.Law professor Robert Weisbergworks directly with young faculty inassisting their spouses or partners infinding academic or other profes-sional positions at Stanford and thesurrounding area.Yet another obstacle is the BayArea’s high cost of living.The medi-an sale price of an on-campus homeis $1.5 million,according to the Fac-ulty Staff Housing Office.The quali-ty of life survey found that 25.5 per-cent of Stanford faculty reportedcost of living as a significant sourceof stress,compared with 12.4 percentof faculty at peer institutions.Stanford has tried to address highliving costs by offering mortgage as-sistance and allowance programs toyoung faculty and by providing more
ZACK HOBERG/The Stanford Daily
Greg Maggiano, justice programmanager for the U.S. State Depart-ment, discussed the prevalence ofcorruption in Afghanistan.
ANASTASIA YEE/The Stanford Daily