Johns Hopkins Gazette | April 27, 2009
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The newspaper of The Johns Hopkins University April 27, 2009 | Vol. 38 No. 32
President, Three Faculty Named AAAS Members

By Lisa De Nike

President Ronald J. Daniels and three Johns Hopkins University faculty members are among the 210 fellows elected to the 229th class of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

In addition to Daniels, the academy elected Andrew Paul Feinberg, the King Fahd Professor of Molecular Medicine in the School of Medicine; Jane Guyer, professor of anthropology in the Krieger School of Arts and Sciences; and Barbara Landau, the Dick and Lydia Todd Professor of Cognitive Science, also in the Krieger School.

The academy was founded during the American Revolution by John Adams, James Bowdoin, John Hancock and others. Its dual role is to honor excellence in the arts and sciences and to provide independent, nonpartisan study of important societal issues.

Ronald J. Daniels took office in March as Johns Hopkins' 14th president and previously served as provost at the University of Pennsylvania and dean of the Faculty of Law at the University of Toronto. Throughout his career, he has been deeply committed to the role of universities in promoting global understanding. His research focuses on law, economics and public policy, in such areas as corporate and securities law, social and economic regulation, and the role of law and legal institutions in promoting Third World development.

Daniels is author or editor of seven books, most recently Rule of Law Reform and Development (2008), on the role of legal institutions in the economies of Third World countries, and Rethinking the Welfare State (2005), an analysis of global social welfare policies, especially the effectiveness of government vouchers (both books co-authored with Michael Trebilcock).

Andrew Paul Feinberg is director of the Center for Epigenetics in the Institute for Basic Biomedical Sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He is considered a pioneer in epigenetics, a field that encompasses the study of non-DNA sequence-related heredity.

Epigenetics literally means "beyond genes" and refers to non-DNA modifications to genes, modifications that carry information content and are maintained during cell division. In 2004, Feinberg founded the Johns Hopkins Center for the Epigenetics of Common Human Disease to help multidisciplinary teams investigate the role of epigenetics not only in cancer but also in aging and common disease. He has spearheaded efforts for genomewide technology for epigenetics research.

Jane Guyer joined the Johns Hopkins faculty in 2002 as a professor in the Anthropology Department and added a secondary appointment in the History Department in 2007. She became a member of the National Academy of Sciences in 2008. Before coming to Johns Hopkins, she spent seven years as director of the Program of African Studies at Northwestern University. She also served on the faculties of Harvard and Boston universities.

Guyer has devoted her entire career to economic transformations in West Africa, particularly the productive economy, the division of labor and the management of money. She has served on several national committees including Oxfam America, the Social Science Research Council, NSF- Anthropology, the African Studies Association and an international advisory group appointed by the World Bank.

Barbara Landau is the Dick and Lydia Todd Professor and chair of the Department of Cognitive Science. Her work focuses on language learning, spatial representation and the relationships between these foundational systems of human knowledge. In particular, Landau investigates these issues in normally developing children and in people who have severe spatial impairments due to a rare genetic condition known as Williams syndrome.

She is a fellow of the Cognitive Science Society, the American Psychological Society, the American Psychological Association and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Last month, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation named her a Guggenheim Fellow. She also serves on the governing board of the Cognitive Science Society and recently completed a term on the board of scientific affairs of the American Psychological Association. She is at work on a book to be titled "Gene, Brain, Mind and Development: The Puzzle of Williams Syndrome."

This year's new AAAS fellows and foreign honorary members were nominated and elected to the academy by current members. A broad-based membership of scholars and practitioners from mathematics, physics, biological sciences, social sciences, humanities and the arts, public affairs and business allows the academy to conduct a wide range of interdisciplinary studies and public policy research.

Daniels, Landau, Guyer and Feinberg will be inducted on Oct. 10 in Cambridge, Mass., alongside other fellows who include Nobel Peace Prize laureate Nelson Mandela, U2 lead singer and advocate for humanitarian causes Bono, Academy Award-winning actors Dustin Hoffman and James Earl Jones, green technology proponent John Doerr, author Thomas Pynchon, Civil War historian James McPherson, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates, National Public Radio journalist Susan Stamberg, California Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald George and chemical engineer Adam Heller, who invented the lithium chloride battery and photochemically self-cleaning windows.

Their induction brings the number of Johns Hopkins fellows of the academy to 44.


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