Santa Clara University

Santa Clara Magazine

Mission Matters


Santa Clara’s new library open for business…months ahead of schedule

The new Learning Commons, Technology Center, and Library
The new Learning Commons, Technology Center, and Library
Photo: Charles Barry

After the dust had cleared from the Orradre Library demolition in summer 2006, things changed almost every day at the building site. One week, a hole, then a frame, then walls; the next week, it seemed, there were windows. And now, with construction completed several months ahead of schedule, SCU’s new Learning Commons, Technology Center, and Library will be open to students for the start of spring quarter.

Ron Danielson, vice provost for information services and SCU’s chief information officer, credits the university’s general contractor, Devcon Construction, with the early completion. “They really pushed to get us the building as rapidly as possible consistent with a quality construction job,” he said.

The new Learning Commons, Technology Center, and Library
Photo: Charles Barry

Library staff will most likely move during the intersession, following the building dedication on March 14, to be joined by staff from the information technology and media services offices.

Liz Salzer, University librarian, looks forward to opening the new facility for services and support and to settling in after 20 months in temporary locations. “We’re not exactly looking forward to the move itself,” she said, “but we are looking forward to being moved.”

Although the learning commons and technology areas will look much more complete, with rooms, computers, and workstations ready for use, the building is still a work in progress. Few of the thousands of volumes that will eventually fill the library shelves will be in place when the building opens. But staff will begin relocating collections from the Automated Retrieval System as soon as possible; those materials going to the open shelves should be moved before the end of the spring term, according to Salzer.

The remainder of volumes and items, as well as those books and archival materials that will be shelved in a new vault, will be moved during the summer. All collections will be in place no later than early September.

Even without books, “the plus for students will be the study space,” Salzer said. “They’ve had almost no space, even less than was in Orradre.”

“I think the university community will be delighted with the building,” said Danielson. “It will offer a variety of spaces and services that currently have no equivalents on campus and, we expect, will spark some innovative programming around academic and educational themes.” —SS


A future writ on water

In the swim: an artist's rendition of the future aquatics center
In the swim: an artist's rendition of the future aquatics center

Jack Sullivan ’59, MBA ’76, knows something about investing. He used skills acquired as an SCU undergraduate accounting major and graduate business student to co-found the San Francisco investment firm Harris Bretall Sullivan & Smith, noted for its socially responsible investments. And while he was studying here, the University invested in him, offering $3,600 in academic and service scholarships. Now Sullivan is returning quite a dividend: He and his wife, Joan, are donating $3 million to fund a new aquatics center on campus.

“Opportunities to do something meaningful are like great investments—they’re hard to come by,” said Sullivan, when the donation was made public in October. Sullivan points out that if you took the $3,600 scholarship sum and compounded it over 50 years at 15 percent, the final number would be “you guessed it—$3 million.”

The Sullivan Aquatics Center will replace the current outdoor pool with a regulation-size facility that includes a movable bulkhead to allow both lap swimmers and water polo players to share the water. New bleachers and an accessible spectator pool entrance will be added.

Construction is slated to begin in early March, with completion tentatively set for September 2008.

Sullivan said the donation was to help “change the ability of SCU to recruit the highest quality water polo players from around the country.” He became a fan of water polo after watching family members play, including a grandson who competed on one of UCLA’s championship teams. And he was inspired to donate because of the leadership of an SCU accounting classmate: President Paul Locatelli, S.J. ’60 —DK


Journey of hope

At the border: Densi Diaz and film production manager Casey Timmoney at a celebration of Las Posadas
At the border: Densi Diaz and film production manager Casey Timmoney at a celebration of Las Posadas

The International Festival of Cinema and Religion in Ferrara, Italy has presented its Human Rights award to Posada, a film written, produced, and directed by Mark McGregor, S.J. Currently a visiting professor in the Bannan Institute for Jesuit Education, McGregor is also the National Coordinator of the Posadas Project, which focuses on the plight of thousands of unaccompanied refugee and migrant children who are homeless or incarcerated in the United States.

Mark McGregor
Mark McGregor
Photo: Emily
Arouth

Las Posadas is a religious procession during Advent that originated in colonial Mexico. In it Catholic communities imitate the “journey of hope” of Joseph and Mary as they sought an inn that would shelter them in Bethlehem. McGregor’s film tells the story of three teenagers—Densi Diaz, Johny Figueroa, and Wilber Garcia—who make the journey from their homes in Central America to the United States, where they were detained by immigration officials for several months.

A November screening of Posada was sponsored by Santa Clara’s new Justice and the Arts Initiative, which sets out to provide the intellectual framework for approaching performing, visual, and communication arts in terms of how they relate to issues of social justice. The initiative is co-directed by Kristin Kusanovich, who teaches modern dance technique and choreographs professionally for the Department of Theatre and Dance, and Carolyn Silberman, who has taught on the SCU dance faculty for over 20 years. —RH


 


Major League Soccer—and former Broncos—to play at Buck Shaw Stadium

It's official: Earthquakes President Michael Crowley, left, and San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed share the good news.
It's official: Earthquakes President Michael Crowley, left, and San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed share the good news.
Photo: Charles Barry

Santa Clara soccer fans are used to cheering former Broncos who turn pro and do their alma mater proud. But starting this spring, with the return of Major League Soccer (MLS) to the Bay Area, the crowds at Buck Shaw Stadium can cheer on the pros right on Bronco turf. That’s because for the next couple of years the San Jose Earthquakes will be playing the majority of their home games on the Mission campus, with the balance being played at the Oakland Coliseum.

The good news was made public in late October. The arrival of the Earthquakes on campus will be preceded by major improvements made by the San Jose team to both Buck Shaw Stadium and Stanton Field, which is used by Broncos men’s and women’s soccer teams for practice. Look for seating in Buck Shaw to nearly double, for the addition of a state-of-the-art digital video board and new public address system, and for a field basking in lights reconfigured specifically for soccer.

Nearly three years ago, Bay Area soccer fans lamented the departure of Major League Soccer from San Jose for Houston, where the team was rechristened the Dynamo. The return of the Earthquakes in ’08 also brings home former Broncos defenders Ryan Cochrane ’05 and Joe Cannon ’98. Now 24 years old Cochrane last year helped anchor for the Dynamo what the San Jose Mercury News esteems the best defense in MLS. Cannon, 33, is two-time MLS goalie of the year and made the All-Star Team with the Quakes in 2001-02.—JM and SBS


Student journalists win trio of national awards

Student journalists from the SCU newspaper, The Santa Clara, took home three national awards in the Story of the Year competition at the 86th annual National College Media Convention in Washington, D.C., in October.

The Story of the Year competition, co-sponsored by the American Society of Newspaper Editors and the Associated Collegiate Press “honors initiative and original reporting of a situation, problem or issue affecting students.” Judges look for entries that show leadership, quality writing, sensitivity, and fairness.

In top form: student journalist Jeremy Herb
In top form: student journalist Jeremy Herb
Photo: Sophie Asmar

The competition recognizes the top student journalists in the country. Santa Clara and Harvard University were the only multiple first-place winners. And as The Santa Clara noted in a recent, well-deserved tooting of its own horn, the trio of awards are the most the student newspaper has ever received in a single year for the Story of the Year contests, which are open to universities nationwide.

Editor-in-Chief Jeremy Herb took first place in the feature category for a story investigating a perennially touchy subject at any university—illicit drug use by students—in “Santa Clara’s underground coke scene,” published in April 2007. A senior communication major who was recently awarded the Edward Shipsey, S.J., Journalism Scholarship by the University, Herb credits the entire staff for the hard work that made the awards possible.

Megan O’Connor ’07, who also majored in communication, earned first place in the diversity category for her story “Undocumented and unemployed.”

The Santa Clara editorial board won third place in the editorial/opinion category for a piece titled “Fighting ignorance through diversity”—which was written in response to a series of theme parties at universities around the country, including at SCU. The board was made up of Herb, Ryan Groshong, Jessica Silliman ’07, and Elizabeth Weeker ’07.

Gordon Young, who advises the newspaper and teaches journalism in the communication department, praised the students for their ethical decision-making in approaching the serious work of journalism. “The newspaper staff put an enormous amount of time and effort into ensuring that the stories were fair and accurate,” he said. “They wanted their work to make a difference.” —DA


Two additions to the Board

The University welcomed two new members to its Board of Trustees last fall.

Michael R. Splinter—president and CEO of Applied Materials Inc.

Michael R. Splinter

Engineer Mike Splinter has been in the semiconductor industry for three decades. Appointed to his current position at Applied Materials five years ago, he worked previously at Intel Corporation and got his start at Rockwell International, where he was awarded two patents. He’s a member of the Technology CEO Council, high-tech business leaders who review new U.S. federal public policy, and chairs the board of directors for the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, a team working to improve housing, transportation, environmental quality, and other issues affecting the region’s workers.

 

Kapil Nanda—founder, chairman, and CEO of Infogain

Kapil Nanda

In 1990 Kapil Nanda started the business consulting firm Infogain, offering customer relations software and offshore development assistance. An engineer and businessman with degrees from Punjab University, University of Kansas, and the University of Southern California, Nanda broadened the company’s reach internationally from its headquarters in Los Gatos to include locations in India, China, and England. —LT


 




A quartet of silver medals

undergraduate recruitment video DVD cover

Not everything that happens in Vegas stays in Vegas. Particularly when it’s news that SCU publications were honored there this December by the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) at its regional awards ceremony.

The awards recognized outstanding achievement in alumni and donor publications, student recruitment, and internal communications: Silver medals went to Santa Clara Magazine for overall excellence in the past academic year; the 2005–06 President’s Report; SCU’s undergraduate recruitment video; and fyi, the online newsletter for faculty and staff.

Jim Purcell, vice president for university relations, noted that the awards were significant for a number of reasons—not least of which, he said, is that “Santa Clara University is a great story, one that has many ‘chapters’ worth telling.”

With its four awards, SCU was one of the most lauded universities in CASE’s District VII, which includes more than 100 colleges and universities from Arizona, California, Hawaii, Nevada, and Utah. —LT


Honoring teaching and scholarship

The University welcomed new faculty to the community and celebrated the achievements of its finest teaching scholars at the Faculty Recognition Dinner in September.

The Brutocao Award for Teaching Excellence

Eileen Elrod
Eileen Elrod
Photo: Charles
Barry

Associate Professor of English Eileen Elrod was honored with the Louis and Dorina Brutocao Award for Teaching Excellence, Santa Clara’s most esteemed accolade for teaching—and one for which alumni and students nominate candidates. The win reflects Elrod’s commitment to work in the classroom where she creates an environment, as one grad noted, “for students to take risks, ask questions, voice opinions, and thus work to their highest capacity.” How does that affect students after they graduate? “She gave me different lenses to view the world,” says Jill Yamasawa ’03, now in the graduate English program at the University of Hawaii.

“It’s a privilege to do what I do,” Elrod says, “and to do it here, in the company of so many extraordinary colleagues and wonderful students.”

This February saw publication of Elrod’s most recent book, Piety and Dissent: Race, Gender, and Biblical Rhetoric in Early American Autobiography (University of Massachusetts Press). The book meticulously explores the religious autobiographies of six early Americans and grapples with issues of racism and domestic abuse.

At SCU since 1992, Elrod teaches courses on gender studies, multicultural literature, religion and literature, and U.S. literature up to 1900. She has also been a contributor to the academic plan for the Bridge/LEAD program, which assists students of color and first-generation college students attending Santa Clara.

Award for Sustained Excellence Scholarship

Nam Ling
Nam Ling
Photo: Charles
Barry

Professor Nam Ling joined the Santa Clara computer engineering faculty in 1989 and has established himself as an internationally recognized authority in the area of video coding and emerging technologies for the transmission of digital video over the Internet and wireless networks. He has an extraordinary record of 130 research publications, many of them in top-tier refereed journals and conference proceedings.

The University Award for Sustained Excellence in Scholarship is SCU’s most prestigious honor for scholarly or creative work and is presented to someone who has been a member of the faculty of Santa Clara University for a minimum of 10 years. SCU faculty submit recommendations of colleagues who have shown exceptional dedication to their research field.

In addition to his teaching and research duties, Ling serves as associate dean of research and faculty development for the engineering school. He is the chief author of Specification and Verification of Systolic Arrays, and a consulting professor and honorary advisor to the National University in Singapore.

Award for Recent Achievement in Scholarship

Sanjiv Das
Sanjiv Das
Photo: Charles
Barry

In the past decade, Sanjiv Das has become a leading international scholar in the field of finance, applying sophisticated mathematical modeling and statistical analysis to understanding financial markets and investment behavior. He came to SCU’s Leavey School of Business in 2000, after holding positions at Harvard and UC Berkeley. His research appears in the very top journals in his field. He also serves as an editor or on the editorial board of some 10 scholarly journals.

Currently serving as chair of the Department of Finance, Das has also repeatedly been recognized as one of the business school’s best and most challenging teachers. That may have something to do with his philosophy of education: You’re never finished with it. Or, as he puts it (borrowing from the Eagles), “You can check out any time you like, but you can never leave.”

The Award for Recent Achievement in Scholarship recognizes a tenured faculty member or senior lecturer whose scholarly or creative work over the previous five years at Santa Clara University represents a major contribution to a field of knowledge or to the arts.

President’s Special Recognition Award

This year’s President’s Special Recognition Award was presented to a group of seven faculty members who played a key leadership role in developing the new Core Curriculum. “They worked diligently and patiently,” Locatelli said, “to reconcile deeply held and sometimes conflicting views; they melded these views into a revision of our Core Curriculum with a common mission, a comprehensive set of learning goals, and a creative structure of requirements.”

Michael Kevane, chaired the committee until leaving for Burkina Faso on a planned research trip last January. He teaches courses on African Economic Development, the Economics of Emerging Markets, International Economics, and has taught the Environmental Studies Capstone course. He conducts research on economic institutions and growth in poor countries, focusing on Africa. His research focuses on the importance of libraries in promoting reading, and the impacts on societies of a reading public. He has also served as President of the Sudan Studies Association, and President of Friends of African Village Libraries, a non-profit he co-founded in 2001.

Chad Raphael, associate professor of communication, assumed the chairmanship of the Core Revision Committee in January 2007. He teaches courses on new media technologies, mass communication, media law and ethics, the news media and politics, and environmental communication. His research interests include investigative reporting, public deliberation, and the use of new media for civic engagement. His book Investigated Reporting: Muckrakers, Regulators and the Struggle Over Television Documentary won three “best book” awards in the fields of media history, media policy and ethics, and research on journalism and mass communication.

Juliana Chang, associate professor of English, came to SCU in 2001 after teaching previously at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and at Boston College. She teaches courses on Asian American women, Asian American literature, American literature, and poetry. Her journal articles, and her current book project, focus on Asian-American literature, psychoanalysis, and critical race studies. She served as Director of Ethnic Studies from 2005 to 2007.

Paul Crowley, S.J., professor of religious studies, was founding director of the interdisciplinary Catholic studies minor. He is currently the chair of the department of religious studies. Specializing in topics of systematic theology, his research interests include the theology of Karl Rahner, hermeneutics and ecclesiology, theologies of suffering and sexuality, religious pluralism, and the nature and methods of theology.

Leilani Miller, associate professor of biology, has been a member of the faculty since 1994 and teaches courses in molecular and cell biology, genetics, and ethical issues in biotechnology and genetics. The latter course was an innovative interdisciplinary course team taught with Margaret McLean from the department of religious studies and the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics. The long-term objective of her research is to contribute to our understanding of how different cell fates are specified during development.

Michael Zampelli, S.J., associate professor in the theatre and dance department, teaches courses in performance and culture, gender and performance, and theatre history His research has focused on the evolution of the professional actress and on the 17th-century commedia dell’arte in relationship to religious anti-theatrical prejudices.

Aleksandar I. Zecevic, professor of electrical engineering and associate dean for graduate studies, has been teaching at Santa Clara University since 1994. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in the area of electric circuits and control, and has also developed an interdisciplinary course on science and religion entitled “Chaos Theory, Metamathematics and the Limits of Knowledge: A Scientific Perspective on Religion.” His technical research has focused on robust control and computation of large scale systems. Zecevic has published more than 30 journal papers in these fields and is a Senior Member of the IEEE.

Also recognized were 16 members of the SCU faculty who are celebrating 25 years of service at the University: Professor of Education Ruth Cook; Professor of Sociology Alma Garcia; Professor of Economics Alexander Field; Professor of English Richard Osberg; Professor of Mathematics and Computer Science Dennis Smolarski, S.J.; Professor of Art and Art History Kelly Detweiler; Professor Operations and Management Information Systems Charles Feinstein; Professor of Counseling Psychology Dale Larson; Senior Lecturer in Mathematics and Computer Science Peter Ross; Professor of Counseling Psychology Jerrold Shapiro; Associate Professor of English Phyllis Brown; Professor of Classics William Greenwalt; Senior Lecturer in English Claudia McIsaac; Senior Lecturer in English Susan Frisbie; Associate Professor of Accounting Neal Ushman; and Professor of Operations and Management Information Systems Stephen Smith.

- AKG and SBS


Why can’t we insure for the Big One?


Homewrecker: Hurricane Katrina's aftermath
Homewrecker: Hurricane Katrina's aftermath
Photo: iStockPhoto

Disasters are why we need insurance, but the truly catastrophic events—earthquakes, hurricanes, and floods—remain stubbornly difficult to insure. (This despite the fact that the modern insurance industry itself was born out of catastrophe: the Great Fire of London in 1666, which destroyed a quarter of England’s GDP.) Why? The problem, notes SCU Associate Professor of Economics Thomas Russell, lies in the capital markets, not in the insurance markets.

Thomas Russell
Thomas Russell
Photo: Courtesy Thomas Russell
Just over a decade ago, Russell and UC Berkeley Professor Dwight Jaffee co-authored a paper examining why insurance companies are reluctant to insure catastrophic risks. And this fall, because of that paper, “Catastrophe Insurance, Capital Markets, and Uninsurable Risks,” the pair was honored with the American Risk and Insurance Association’s Robert I. Mehr Award. The lag time is intentional; the award is presented to a journal article that stands the test of time. After all, with insurance, one needs to take the long view.

With auto insurance, premiums collected in any one year suffice when it comes to paying out that year’s claims. “With catastrophes, however,” note Russell and Jaffee in a more recent paper, “when the ‘big one’ hits, current premiums will not suffice.” Instead, large pools of capital are needed to cover potential catastrophes. And those pools are not available for a number of reasons, including accounting requirements that prohibit companies from irrevocably earmarking surplus funds toward payment of a catastrophic risk; lack of tax incentives for companies to save for a rainy day; and, as the authors put it, “myopic behavior of stock market investors.”

The devastation wrought by Hurricane Katrina renewed concern over making catastrophe insurance available. (Another factor became evident in the aftermath of Katrina: Despite the subsidized National Flood Insurance Program run by FEMA, the program hasn’t helped the many people along the Gulf Coast who didn’t buy this protection.) Russell and Jaffee call for government involvement as a solution, along the model of the Federal Reserve, with the guiding principle of having a public scheme mimic how the markets would govern—if only the markets would do what they should. —AKG and SBS


Angelina redux

US Weekly MagazineReaders of The Economist were taken off-guard by an essay last year written by an unusual contributor to that serious-minded journal: Hollywood superstar Angelina Jolie, who weighed in with “A Year for Accountability,” a call to hold responsible those who have committed genocide and other crimes in Darfur. That essay led, in December, to the appearance in gossip mag Us Weekly of another unlikely suspect: SCU Associate Professor of Economics Michael Kevane, who was asked: Is Angie credible? “I think she is raising a very important issue about credibility,” he told Us. Currently chairing the economics department, Kevane has studied Sudan for more than two decades and has served as president of the Sudan Studies Association. —SBS
 


Tech benefiting humanity

Solving problems we created: Gordon Moore hopes technology can do what politicians won't.
Solving problems we created: Gordon Moore hopes technology can do what politicians won't.
Photo: Charlotte Fiorito Photography

Inexpensive wind and solar-energy systems for rural Nicaragua. Simple-to-use medical diagnostic tests for infectious diseases—and equipment that can stand up to the heat and humidity in many developing countries. A low-cost artificial limb developed in India by an organization that has helped more than a million people already with its invention. These are just a few of the innovations by laureates honored at the Seventh Annual Tech Museum Awards in November.

Twenty-five organizations were honored, and five were presented with cash awards of $50,000. Laureates were selected by a panel led by the SCU Center for Science, Technology, and Society. The awards themselves were presented at a gala hosted at the San Jose McEnery Convention Center, with former 49ers quarterback Steve Young emceeing.

This year, Intel co-founder and philanthropist Gordon Moore was presented with the James C. Morgan Global Humanitarian Award. “Technology has helped create a lot of problems in the world,” Moore said, according to the San Jose Mercury News. “And I think it’s the one thing that will help solve them.” —SBS


The next stage

Tech Laureates offer some simple solutions to complex problems: wind turbines for Nicaragua; easy-to-use and rugged equipment to test for infectious disease in hot and humid climates; and low-cost prosthetic limbs for amputees in India.
Tech Laureates offer some simple solutions to complex problems: wind turbines for Nicaragua; easy-to-use and rugged equipment to test for infectious disease in hot and humid climates; and low-cost prosthetic limbs for amputees in India.
Photo: Charlotte Fiorito Photography

On the heels of the Tech Awards gala, on Nov. 8 Santa Clara’s Center for Science, Technology, and Society (CSTS) hosted Tech Laureates on campus for a conference on “Technology Benefiting Humanity: Taking Innovation to the Next Stage.” Co-sponsored by Applied Materials and Microsoft, the conference offered the opportunity for social benefit entrepreneurs to examine how they can more effectively remake the rules of innovation—and what role Silicon Valley can play in mobilizing technology to address the world’s urgent unmet needs. Talks featured CSTS Advisory Board Chair and Silicon Valley luminary Regis McKenna; Skoll Foundation Senior Program Officer Dan Crisafulli; and World Resources Institute Vice President for Innovation and Special Projects Allen Hammond.

SCU Distinguished Visiting Professor Manuel Castells—esteemed by some to be the most influential social scientist of our age—served up the lunchtime keynote. He paid homage to the 1960s spirit of freedom that, he notes, has translated into the Silicon Valley passion to create. Following from that, “some of the most important inventions have not been for profit,” he said. He offered as example the ubiquitous TCP/IP protocols, which we use to connect to the Internet.

But Castells warned that evidence is not showing that technology will simply trickle down globally. Further, he said that social exclusion, which can be radically amplified by connectivity, “is directly linked to global criminality. It’s now 5 percent of global GDP.” Our ability to address future social and political problems depends in part, he said, on what people like those gathered for the conference accomplish in the years to come.

Castells cited the conference itself as one important reason to be hopeful of what converging technologies might accomplish for good in the years to come. Among other reasons, it was proof that “people do not wait to be saved.” —SBS


Trust me

“Trust” isn’t the first word that most folks associate with “cyberspace.” More likely it’s “risk.” So when former national cybersecurity czar Richard A. Clarke came to Santa Clara this October to deliver the keynote for SCU’s Trust Online conference, he shared strategies for making the Internet a little less risky for business and leisure—and less hospitable to crime, espionage, and fraud.

Consider this, Clarke said: “Massive amounts of data on corporate networks, on government networks, and university networks have been exfiltrated out of the United States over the last several years.” Indeed, the Pentagon had recently revealed that a hacker had not only penetrated its security but made a cyberforay into the secretary of defense’s office itself. The origin of the attack? It was traced to China. And consider that a week before the conference, Clarke said, hackers got into the system running the power grid in Idaho and took down a generator.

The Trust Online conference was co-sponsored by the Center for Science, Technology, and Society; the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics; the High Tech Law Institute; and Microsoft. Clarke observed, “If we didn’t have this university and its centers, we would probably conclude at the end of today’s meeting that we needed it.”

Beyond needing a university “in the middle of Silicon Valley where we can discuss ideas”—especially one like Santa Clara that is “one of the gems of California”—what else do we need to reclaim e-space from the bad guys? Clarke offered a few solutions, some of which are shibboleths to the left or the right:

  • National ID cards containing biometric data
  • Authentication online—at least for sites managing commerce or infrastructure
  • Increased regulation from the FCC—which the courts have ruled has the authority to make Internet service providers toe the line but, so far, has failed to exercise that authority. (“You don’t want government regulation?” Clark quipped. “Then just keep on letting your kids lick the lead off the Chinese toys.”)
  • Expanded use of a closed Internet for certain functions—e.g., the part that connects to nuclear labs or power grids
  • Improved quality of secure computer code to reduce the number of required patches and to eliminate trap doors
  • Establishment of a government champion of privacy rights and civil liberties with the power to actively oversee government activity—an action that would help restore some trust in government itself.

During the Q&A following his speech, Clarke was asked if there are other countries the U.S. should look to when it comes to cybersecurity. For online banking, Clarke offered Hong Kong—which requires two-factor identification. As for international policy bodies, Clarke recalled the first time that he sent an assistant to a meeting of ICANN, the international Internet regulating body. When the assistant returned, Clarke asked him how things went. The assistant answered with a question: “Do you remember the bar scene in the first ‘Star Wars’ movie?”

Gone phishing

Former cybersecurity czar Richard A. Clarke
Former cybersecurity czar Richard A. Clarke
Photo: Charles Barry

The conference brought more disturbing news from the annals of fighting cybercrime: The crooks and would-be crooks are diversifying, getting more sophisticated and organized, and “malware” developers are being funded to develop new and more damaging attacks. That was the assessment of Dave Cullinane, eBay’s chief security and information officer, who, in a lunchtime keynote address, shared some findings of a recent analysis his company had conducted of threats online. One observation that many of his listeners could corroborate: Phishing scams are better than they used to be, increasingly slick in their look and feel, with the goal of hooking computer users into revealing their passwords.

Panel discussions that included security experts from TRUSTe, Microsoft, Cisco, and the Federal Trade Commission assessed that one of the major tasks in cybersecurity is to break the cycle of online attacks we now face. However, it will remain a parry-thrust game, where the advantage resides with the attacker, unless we can make changes in policy, technology, and how we as individuals interact online. —JC and SBS


A matter of perspective

A Bronco's View of the WorldWe turn to artists to tell us truths about our world that others can't. For instance, the new sense of perspective on the planet that folks have been known to gain after walking the paths of the Mission campus can't really be captured on a flat map. Instead, the curvature of the Earth as rendered by Bay Area artist Bud Peen (with a nod to Saul Steinberg and his famed New Yorker cover) might be a better bet. While we can't offer a full-size, fold-out version of A Bronco's View of the World in these pages, there is in fact a poster-sized edition available. Order it online  or call the SCU campus bookstore at 408-554-4356. —SBS