Research Activity Digest

Counseling MA student publishes book "Screen Children"

Screen ChildrenMeltem Kusku, Counseling MA student at Webster Geneva Campus, published her book “Screen Children” in January 2021. In this book, Meltem blends her counseling knowledge, her research skills from her 24-year research career at Procter & Gamble, and her own personal experience as a mother of two. In the age of screens, children start interacting with digital technologies such as mobile phones, tablets and computers at a very young age. This book examines the physical, psychological and social effects of using digital screens, and offers practical solutions. The book presents a wealth of information in a concise, engaging and easy-to-understand way.

The book is endorsed by Gabor Mate, MD: "Screen Children is a sobering read: a clearly-written, science-based warning on the impacts of digital technology, and a helpful primer on how to avoid and mitigate its harms."

Online Roundtable hosted by International Relations Department titled, “U.S. Presidential Election: What Next?”

On Nov. 10, 2020, the IR Department organized an online roundtable entitled the “U.S. Presidential Election: What Next?”

The distinguished speakers were Claudio Bozzo, COO, Mediterranean Shipping Company, and former President of MSC USA; Paolo R. Graziano, Professor of Political Science, University of Padua; Jussi M. Hanhimäki, Professor of International History & Politics, the Graduate Institute of International & Development Studies; Yossi Mekelberg, Professor of International Relations, Regent's University London; Slavi Pachovski, and former Permanent Representative of Bulgaria to the United Nations Organization. Oreste Foppiani, Head of the Department of International Relations at Webster Geneva Campus, moderated the roundtable.

The debate took place at a time when the outcome of the election was still unclear although the Democrats' candidate Joseph Biden had a significant lead in the voter count. There were disputes over the election outcome in states such as Wisconsin (10 Electoral Votes or EVs), Michigan (16 EVs), Pennsylvania (20 EVs), Georgia (16 EVs), Arizona (11 EVs), and Nevada (6 EVs). It was evident that the results in the key states of Wisconsin, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Georgia were going to determine who would be the next president due to their high number of electoral college votes. The uncertainty sparked a great deal of speculation and different theories about who could potentially be the next president of the United States for the next four years. As the process of counting votes was nearing its end, the results showed the highest voter turnout in American history as well as the most significant divide between voters in the US.

Throughout the online debate, the speakers provided a great deal of food for thought, shedding light on different aspects. Mister Bozzo spoke about trade issues—shedding light on the United States' importance within the trading sector. He also mentioned that the outcome of the presidential election will have a major impact on investor confidence. He also said that Italy and the US have common economic and geopolitical interests in the Mediterranean region.

Professor Graziano, who specializes in populism, reviewed American politics' overall scope and its implications for Europe—commenting on the rise of populism within the US and Europe. Professor Hanhimäki criticized Donald Trump's domestic and international policies, expressing relief that Joseph Biden was leading in the polls at the time.

Professor Mekelberg focused mostly on Israel's position on the US outcome, looking at the potential threats. Israel risked increased threats from surrounding Arab countries due to the US pulling troops out of the region, meaning that bolder action could be taken by neighboring countries against Israel.

Ambassador Pachovski recounted his former experiences when dealing with diplomats from the US, focusing mostly on agriculture, technological advancements, and Cold War views on missiles. His insight demonstrated his experience working in Eastern Europe and the United States. He highlighted the differences between the two cultures and expressed awe and admiration for the immense influence of the US in the international political arena.

Dr. Liza Jachens participates in CHS Alliance Humanitarian Human Resources conference panel.

Dr. Liza Jachens, recently participated in a panel discussion entitled: “How Covid19 will impact employee wellbeing in the long term”. This was moderated by Aimee Wielechowski, Head of HR International Operations, Danish Refugee Council. The opening panel discussion brought three experts from diverse fields to the virtual stage. Speakers addressed topics ranging from the pandemic’s effect on mental health on humanitarian workers to the importance of psychosocial safety climate and benefits of global well-being programmes to help attendees draw out some of the challenges and opportunities to consider.

This panel discussion was part of the CHS Alliance Humanitarian Human Resources conference (Nov. 3-6, 2020). It gathered a global community of Human Resources practitioners, researchers, and experts from across the humanitarian, development and private sector. The CHS Alliance is a global alliance of humanitarian and development organisations committed to making aid work better for people. They strengthen accountability by implementing the Core Humanitarian Standard (CHS).

HHR2020 took place in 34 sessions across four half days. There were over 160 attendees from 33 countries, all entirely remote! In the sessions people shared, debated, and discussed the main lessons learnt from COVID-19 and re-imagined the future of aid work. Read the event report for an overview of the thought-provoking keynotes, lively panel discussions and learning workshops led by those shaking up people management in aid. The HHR2020 report provides insight into the event’s objectives and attendees, it provides learning takeaways, actions and resources for each session and finally reflects on participant feedback for the future. Areas covered in the report include: employee wellbeing, organizational agility, diversity and inclusion, people processes, digitalization and HR future leadership.