Umphrey’s McGee recently stopped by SiriusXM‘s Jam On for a special in-studio performance, which premiered on Monday as part of the satellite radio station’s Jam Files sessions.Hosted by Ari Fink during the band’s recent three-night New York City run, Umphrey’s Jam Files episode will continue to air at the following times on Sirius XM’s Jam On (channel 29) throughout the week:Tuesday, March 5th, at 6:00 p.m. (EST)Wednesday, March 6th, at 11:00 p.m. (EST)Thursday, March 7th, at 8:00 a.m. (EST)Saturday, March 9th, at 9:00 a.m. (EST)Sunday, March 10th, at 3:00 p.m. (EST)Watch video of Umphrey’s McGee performing “In The Kitchen” from their Jam Files episode below:Umphrey’s McGee “In The Kitchen”[Video: SiriusXM Jam On]Head to Umphrey’s McGee’s website for a full list of their upcoming tour dates and ticketing information.
Moving out of their milestone 20th anniversary year, jamtronica pioneers STS9 announced an upcoming run of 2019 fall shows throughout the east coast dubbed APO11O. Inspired by the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 spaceflight, which sent two Americans to land on the moon for the first time ever, STS9 will be celebrating a theme of exploration at every stop on the tour.STS9 will open up their east coast run of shows at Buffalo, NY’s Buffalo Riverworks on September 19th, followed by stops at Brooklyn, NY’s Brooklyn Mirage (9/20); Boston, MA’s House of Blues (9/21); Burlington, VT’s Higher Ground (9/22); Albany, NY’s Upstate Concert Hall (9/24); Richmond, VA’s The National (9/25); and a three-night run at Falls Church, VA’s State Theatre on September 26th-28th.The band’s full announcement reads,Inspired by the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 spaceflight, which sent two Americans to land on the moon for the first time ever!! We’ll be celebrating a theme of exploration at every stop on the tour – all shows will be custom crafted to explore the STS9 catalogs, and we have some special plans for each stop in the north east we’re looking to go where no sectornaut has gone before… LFG!Tickets go on sale to the general public this Friday, June 7th.For a full list of the band’s upcoming tour dates and ticketing information, head to STS9’s website.
Harvard President Drew Faust has embraced Harvard’s international image in both practical and symbolic ways. Faust, whose appointment was celebrated around the world as an example of what women now can achieve, has traveled to China, Botswana, South Africa, Western Europe, and most recently took a weeklong trip to Japan and China. 6Reflections of the tour. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 2Detail of a traditional Japanese lunch, which includes bite-size portions of delectable fresh seafood, and a pot of customary tea. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 33Heenan and Faust speak before the briefing.Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 13The fish market is a bustling place during the early morning hours. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 20Following her meeting with the prime minister, Faust takes questions from the media.Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 26Graduates from Bryn Mawr, Drew Faust’s alma mater, crowd around Faust (right) to give a cheer. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 16Faust answers questions from the journalists. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 12At the Tsukiji Fish Market in Tokyo, an auctioneer calls out rhythmically to entice buyers.Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 18Susan Pharr (from left), Charles Rosenberg, and Drew Faust meet Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 29A reflective ceiling shows members of the Harvard delegation on the sidewalk outside of the Louis Vuitton building. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 8Charles Rosenberg and Drew Faust stroll through a marketplace. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 17Following the press meeting, Gordon (from left), Faust and Rosenberg speak about the session. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 31Prior to a lunch with other university presidents in the Shangri-La Hotel, Faust speaks with some of the attendees. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 14Yasushi Akashi (from left), the chairman of International House, and Drew Faust speak to a lunchtime gathering of university presidents. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 3Professor Ted Bestor (from left), President Drew Faust, and Professor Andrew Gordon enjoy the tour. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 1Harvard University President Drew Faust tours Kyoto with Harvard professors Ted Bestor, Andrew Gordon, and Susan Pharr. They visit temples, shrines, villas, and markets in the ancient city. Here, a Kyoto garden scene offers quietly arching trees and vibrant, inviting moss. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 21Students gather to hear Faust (right) speak during her visit to the Keio Girls Senior High School. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 22Faust walks through the Mita Campus Old University Library. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 19Faust speaks to Hatoyama through his translator. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 30Exterior view of the Christian Dior Building. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 5A view of Kyoto’s somewhat bare trees on a cloudy day.Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 9The hostess, dressed in a customary kimono tied with an obi, speaks about the traditional Japanese lunch enjoyed by the group. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 23Faust (right) gives a brief interview and sits for photographs following her talk to students. Heenan (left) follows the discussion. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 25Faust attends the Harvard Club of Japan Dinner at Hotel Okura. Rosenberg (second from left), Faust, and Jack Reardon arrive at the event. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 4Detail of the Kyoto tour.Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 35Teresita Alvarez-Bjelland (left) and Faust speak during the Harvard Center Shanghai celebratory reception and banquet in the Shangri-La Hotel.Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 38Mostafavi (left) and Light speak following the event. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 15A member of the Japan National Press Club poses a question to Faust. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 11The Harvard delegation meets with President Eiji Hatta of Doshisha University. Christine Heenan (from left), Ted Bestor, Andrew Gordon, Susan Pharr, Charles Rosenberg, Drew Faust, Eiji Hatta, Keiko Ikeda, and other university officials speak. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 40A view of the World Expo site from the tour bus. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 27Faust tours the architectural sights of Tokyo, including the Louis Vuitton, Tod’s, and Prada buildings, with Harvard Design School Dean Mohsen Mostafavi. Here, Makoto Hoshino (from left) and Mostafavi discuss the design of the Prada building. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 32Yang YuLiang (from left), Faust, Madsen, and Zhang XinSheng speak during the lunch. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 24Norio Okaido (right) attends the meeting in the Hotel Okura where Faust meets with CULCON. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 7A tree in the Shugakuin Imperial Villa echoes the human form.Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 28Here, an interior view of the Louis Vuitton building shows reflective panels and a modern leather bench. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 36Faust and Harvard Business School Dean Jay Light shake hands before Faust speaks from the podium. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 37Phillip Zhang ’12 (left) and Yi Cai ’11 speak with guests following the duet they performed during the banquet. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 39Faust tours the architectural sights of Shanghai, including the World Expo site. Kongjian Yu (from left) speaks with Faust as he leads the walking tour along the World Expo site. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 10The group tours the Shugakuin Imperial Villa. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer 34A view of the Pudong skyline and the HSBC building that houses the Harvard Center Shanghai. Stephanie Mitchell/Harvard Staff Photographer
October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, but chances are you didn’t realize that.That’s because women who have been battered or sexually assaulted are an underserved community; immigrant victims even more so. A conversation in the Schlesinger Library’s Radcliffe College Room, titled “Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault: It’s Everybody’s Business,” explored the topic on Monday, Oct. 25.While 14 percent of Massachusetts residents are immigrants, they make up 26 percent of domestic violence deaths. For many immigrant women, staying alive is a daily struggle.Sharing case studies, personal anecdotes, and chilling statistics, four leaders from local organizations that provide services around domestic violence discussed the realities and challenges inherent in delivering services to such a disenfranchised group. The leaders included Susan Cayouette, co-director of Emerge, Counseling and Education to Stop Domestic Violence; the Rev. Susan Chorley, director of Renewal House, the Unitarian Universalist Urban Ministry; Carline Desire, executive director of the Association of Haitian Women in Boston; and Maureen Gallagher, policy director of Jane Doe Inc.The panel discussion was hosted by Community Works, a cooperative made up of 33 local grassroots organizations devoted to social and economic justice; all the participating speakers are members of this group. Co-founder Fran Froelich stated their mission simply, “We seek not only to alleviate suffering, but also to eliminate the causes for that suffering; to speak up for people who have no voice and help them find their voices.”The event also marked the opening for research of the Kip Tiernan Papers, initially given to the library in November 2006. Kip Tiernan, BI ’89, founder of Rosie’s Place and the Boston Food Bank and co-founder of Community Works and the Poor People’s United Fund, “has long been a paragon of social justice,” said Marilyn Dunn, executive director of the Schlesinger Library and librarian of the Radcliffe Institute.Tiernan herself, who at 84 continues to be a tireless advocate for the downtrodden and disenfranchised in Boston and beyond, advised that—when fighting for social and economic justice—it’s important to realize the importance of passion, rage, and faith. But not the type of faith you might think: “I have faith in us,” she said.Incidentally, the monthlong Community Gifts Through Harvard campaign, which kicks off next week, raises roughly $1 million each year in donations from the University community. Two thirds of that goes to support local nonprofit agencies like Community Works. If you’d like to join the local fight for social and economic justice, please remember Community Works when giving through Harvard.
Read Full Story The Advanced Leadership Initiative (ALI) wants to know what you think about education, technology, and innovation. As part of its upcoming Education Think Tank, people from outside of Harvard University are invited to join in the conversation about how to make education more relevant.“If we are serious about reinventing education, it is going to take many people,” says Professor Fernando Reimers, ALI co-chair.ALI is an interfaculty collaboration at Harvard that aims to prepare experienced leaders to take on new challenges in the social sector, where they potentially can make an even greater societal impact.This year, the mission of ALI’s Education Think Tank, dubbed “Leveraging Technology to Enhance the Relevancy and Quality of Education,” is to dig deep into issues surrounding education innovation, technology, and entrepreneurship. “It seems to me the needs in a social context involving jobs, the economy, and politics are changing much faster than schools are,” Reimers says. “We need to think hard about what we are going to do to adapt to those changes.”For more information
Some of the faces are well known, others are familiar to only a few, but all of the pictures in the display inside Harvard Law School’s (HLS) Wasserstein Hall are of women lawyers, policymakers, and others from around the globe who have made a difference and inspired others to do the same.“Inspiring Change, Inspiring Us” is the name of the series both on display and in an online exhibit that honors International Women’s Day. The project is a joint effort by the Harvard Law and International Development Society (LIDS), the Harvard Women’s Law Association (WLA), and 17 other HLS student organizations that sponsored the portraits. The project also received support from the Harvard Law School Milbank Tweed Fund.“We came together and wanted something that would be different from an event, that would really change the atmosphere and reach people beyond those who would immediately be interested in coming to hear someone talk,” said HLS student and LIDS co-president Becky Wolozin, who helped to develop the exhibit.For the past several weeks, students, faculty, and staff submitted nominations in an online form, offering up names of women who had inspired them throughout their lives. “We got a range of people, from a person’s grandmother who’s a very influential judge in Texas, to, of course, HLS Dean Martha Minow,” said third-year HLS student and WLA intersectional committee chair Vivian Ban, another organizer of the show.The final 66 portraits include Ruth Bader Ginsburg, U.S. Supreme Court associate justice; Marian Wright Edelman, founder and president of the Children’s Defense Fund; Bayan Mahmoud Al-Zahran, founder of Saudi Arabia’s first all-female law firm; Hauwa Ibrahim, a Nigerian human-rights lawyer; and Barbara R. Arnwine, president and executive director of the National Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights Under Law. Other portraits are of academics, activists, public servants, lawyers, and businesswomen.“Sometimes I feel like it’s hard for us to see the world outside of the law school … we forget the kinds of things that really brought us here in the first place,” said Ban. “These portraits are a reminder of who inspired us to even be here, and the kinds of things that we can strive for in the future.”Before the show’s opening reception on Thursday, Dana H. Born, lecturer in public policy at Harvard Kennedy School and a retired brigadier general with 30 years of service in the U.S. Air Force, posed in front of her portrait with her nominator, second-year HLS student Maria Parra-Orlandoni.Born recalled that when she was in grade school, women weren’t allowed to attend the U.S. Air Force Academy; today women serve in virtually every military occupation, including commanding fighter squadrons and naval combat vessels. She said her first thought upon being nominated was that although she appreciated the recognition, “It’s not about me, it’s about we.’”“To me, it’s an acknowledgement of the journey of accomplishment that we collectively have had, both past and present,” said Born. “Even more importantly, while talking to the next generation of women present at today’s exhibition I was inspired by their talent and commitment — and foresee even greater accomplishments by these future leaders as they continue the sacred obligation we each have to pay it forward.“For whatever small measure I may have added to this occasion,” she added, “I would be remiss if I did not acknowledge the women (and men) trailblazers who provided me the inspiration, opportunity, and belief in myself to do my best, and the rest will take care of itself. No one understood this better, nor said it more eloquently, than Sir Isaac Newton when he uttered the immortal words: ‘If I have seen further than most, it is because I have stood on the shoulders of giants.’”Parra-Orlandoni, who is co-president of the HLS Armed Forces Association, met Born last semester during a meeting at HKS. She praised the retired general for her leadership skills and called her “inspiring and wise.”“She helps guide me and inspire me to do great things, so I thought she would be an incredible nominee for this great project.”The HLS show runs through March 14.
Delivering Harvard’s Commencement address, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg called on the Class of 2014 this afternoon to safeguard free speech and inquiry, rights that he said are under attack both in Washington, D.C., and on college campuses across the country.Bloomberg, who graduated from Harvard Business School in 1966, specifically criticized protests at some universities that have short-circuited graduation speeches by those who hold views that are unpopular with some groups. He also criticized politically motivated efforts to reduce science research funding or quash teaching of controversial topics, such as evolution. Supporting the free debate of opposing views, he said, is “a sacred trust” of universities and the basis of democratic society.“There’s no easy time to say hard things. Never feel reticent to speak what’s right,” Bloomberg urged the graduates. “Do not be complicit. Do not follow the crowd. Speak up and fight back.”As the main address during Harvard’s annual Commencement ceremonies, Bloomberg’s speech built on themes addressed earlier by Harvard President Drew Faust.Faust outlined three elements that she believes Harvard owes the future: answers to important questions, new questions that stimulate inquiry and debate, and the ability to understand answers to questions — about truth, justice, goodness, and our origin — and derive meaning from them.“Questions like these can be unsettling, and they can make universities unsettling places,” Faust said. “But that too is an essential part of what we owe the future: the promise to combat complacency, to challenge the present in order to prepare for what is to come, to shape the present in service of an uncertain yet impatient future.”The speeches highlighted Commencement’s Afternoon Exercises — officially the annual meeting of the Harvard Alumni Association — in Harvard Yard. During Morning Exercises, the University conferred degrees on 6,500 graduates from Harvard College and the graduate Schools. The graduates were joined by thousands of family members, friends, and other visitors.The day dawned cool, bright, and sunny, with thousands of excited graduates in caps and gowns lining up on the streets nearby, awaiting their formal procession into the Yard.The morning’s ceremony, heavy with tradition and scripted rites, was convened and adjourned by the top-hatted high sheriff of Middlesex County and featured student speeches and a rendition of “The Star-Spangled Banner” by Aretha Franklin. Franklin was among eight honorary degree recipients, who also included Bloomberg and former President George H.W. Bush.During the Afternoon Exercises, Faust and Harvard Alumni Association President Catherine Gellert recognized several reunion classes and individuals for their service to the University. Faust presented Harvard Medals to several alumni, including Anand Mahindra, J. Louis Newell, and Emily Rauh Pulitzer. Outgoing Alumni Association Executive Director Jack Reardon, who is stepping down June 30, was recognized with a special Harvard Medal.During his speech, Bloomberg said that Harvard has so far resisted protests against unpopular campus speakers, citing the administration’s backing of Colorado Sen. Michael Johnston’s appearance at the Graduate School of Education (GSE) Wednesday despite student protests of his views on education. The support of Faust and GSE Dean James Ryan, Bloomberg said, “could not have provided a more valuable final lesson to the Class of 2014.”When it comes to the faculty’s political leanings, however, Bloomberg said Harvard and other Ivy League schools have some work to do. Ninety-eight percent of political donations by faculty members at all Ivy League schools went to Democratic candidates, Bloomberg said, a uniformity that he said calls into question whether students are hearing all points of view. The danger, he said, is that partisanship will close people’s minds to new ideas — particularly those they initially oppose — which he said has already occurred in Washington, D.C., where lawmakers have ceased listening to each other on such critical issues as gun violence and climate change.“If students graduate with ears and minds closed, the University has failed both the students and society,” said Bloomberg, who is also a successful entrepreneur and a philanthropist.In her speech, Faust recalled the long tradition of Harvard and of Tercentenary Theatre, the outdoor area between the Memorial Church and Widener Library where Commencement ceremonies are held. Such historical figures as Nelson Mandela, Winston Churchill, Franklin Roosevelt, and George Marshall had all stood there, as had the University community, when it gathered there after the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, and in happier circumstances to celebrate Harvard’s 375th anniversary in 2011.Universities, Faust said, are uniquely responsible to both the past and the future and, though Commencement Day is full of historical reminders, it is important not to forget the obligation to the future, to support research that is rapidly expanding the frontiers of scientific knowledge, of economic competitiveness, of international diplomatic challenges, and of technical issues, such as governance of the Internet.“We must continue to support our answer-seekers, who work at the crossroads of the theoretical and the applied, at the nexus of research, public policy, and entrepreneurship,” Faust said. “Together, they will shape our future and enhance our understanding of the world.”Faust said the University not only owes the future its knowledge, new questions, and meaning, it also owes the future the students who pass through its gates each year. She highlighted financial aid as an important priority for the future.“As today’s ceremonies so powerfully remind us, we also owe the future the men and women who are prepared to ask questions and seek answers and search for meaning for decades to come,” Faust said. “Today we send some 6,500 graduates into the world, to be teachers and lawyers, scientists and physicians, poets and planners and public servants.”
Targeting mechanisms in the central nervous system that sense energy generated by nutrients might yield the beneficial effects of low-calorie diets on aging without the need to alter food intake, suggests new research from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.The study appears online today in the journal Cell. The senior author was William Mair, assistant professor of genetics and complex diseases; the lead author was Kristopher Burkewitz, a researcher in Mair’s lab.The researchers wanted to learn more about energy-sensing processes in organisms — in this case using the model organism C. elegans — because previous studies in species ranging from nematode worms like C. elegans to primates have shown that limiting food intake, known as caloric restriction, can improve metabolic dysfunction and promote healthy aging.The new study shows that there may be therapeutic alternatives to caloric restriction that produce similar benefits while avoiding some of the negative side effects, which in humans can include decreased fertility and immunity.The study focused on a molecule called AMP-activated protein kinase, or AMPK, which acts as a molecular fuel gauge to detect energy levels. It’s been known that AMPK plays important roles in all cell types, but researchers didn’t understand which of these activities were most critical to regulating longevity.The researchers found that AMPK inhibited the activity of a protein called CRTC-1 in neurons. This process, in turn, controlled the behavior of mitochondria — the primary energy-producing organelles in cells — throughout the organism, by altering production of a neurotransmitter. The researchers were struck by the fact that altering the AMPK pathway in just a limited set of neurons was sufficient to override its effects on metabolism and longevity in other tissues. Aging was influenced more by what the animals perceived they were eating than what they actually ate.The study suggests that manipulating this energy-sensing pathway can cause organisms to perceive their cells to be in a low-energy state, even if they are eating normally and energy levels are high. Drugs targeting the cells’ energy-sensors in this way could potentially address age-related diseases, including cancer and neurodegeneration, and may offer an alternative to calorie restriction.The new finding could have significant implications for public health, given that aging is the central risk factor for the majority of complex diseases, and the disease burden of the elderly is one of the key challenges to public health in the 21st century.
The much-traveled path through Harvard College is a four-year cycle that ends in a breathtaking Commencement ceremony on Harvard Yard each spring.But every Harvard student has a unique story, and sometimes their individual choices take students on journeys toward graduation off the traditional cycle.Family, friends, classmates, professors, and school officials gathered last Friday to celebrate the accomplishments of this year’s class of more than 100 seniors at the Midyear Graduates Recognition Ceremony in the Radcliffe Institute’s Knafel Center.“Some of these unplanned detours can lead to some of the most magical and exhilarating experiences of our lives, despite the momentary shock and reconsideration that it can cause,” Rakesh Khurana, the Danoff Dean of Harvard College, told attendees gathered at the ceremony. “Life intervenes, and we have to grapple with uncertainty, and it is in those moments of uncertainty that we encounter serendipity.”Educational detours can be both planned and unplanned. Some students accelerate their studies and graduate early. Others take time off from school for internships or for personal projects, travel, or family emergencies. Gabriel Bayard ’15 worked on a campaign for a labor movement in Boston and took a break from his Harvard studies.“I figured it would be really helpful to me to take a breath away from Harvard, but still be in Boston and be around friends,” he said. “It was a great decision.”Julia F.P. Ostmann ’15-16, chosen by the 2016 Senior Class Committee to reflect on her experience at the College, reminded the audience of the struggles of poet T.S. Eliot, who was once placed on academic probation by the College. She said that Eliot took a nontraditional path to eventual success, eventually graduating early from Harvard and in 1948 winning the Nobel Prize in Literature.“What I believe is that in taking time off or in choosing to graduate early — in committing to field research in India or freelance writing or White House internships or taking the time and space to heal — or in my case 113 episodes of ‘Parks and Recreation’ — our attention shifts,” said Ostmann. “We stand outside of Harvard, and we see it differently. Maybe just slightly, maybe just enough to gain a newfound appreciation … or maybe you finally feel you get it.”,In her faculty address, Maria Tatar, the John L. Loeb Professor of Germanic Languages and Literatures and of Folklore and Mythology, told students there is great value in the struggles and challenges of life. She reminded seniors to continue creating even in the face of rejection and to always be present in life.“You are facing chaos, chance, serendipity, and life suddenly resembles a pinball game,” she said. “Failures, the moments of gloom and exhaustion in your life, are exactly what will set you right.”Philip Lovejoy, executive director of the Harvard Alumni Association, reminded students that their connection to Harvard does not end with graduation and encouraged them to tap into the vast network of alumni around the world.“You can continue to be the change here, working to make Harvard a better version of itself,” he said. “Alumni lead Harvard. Alumni champion and protect the University.”The ceremony marked a journey of accomplishment for Virginia Marcus ’15, who took more than a year off to explore the entertainment industry where she hopes to find a career.“All my friends have graduated, but this is wonderful and I’m so excited,” she said. “I’m moving to [Los Angeles] in January, and I’m terrified, but I’m so inspired.”It was also a proud day for Bayard’s parents, Mireya Herrera and Jean Pierre Bayard, who traveled from California to attend the ceremony.“It’s emotional, and we hope that he finds his way,” said Bayard. “It’s a great education and he is well set for the future.”Khurana told the students that he sees much promise in their futures and in their ability to make a contribution to the world.“I hope [Harvard] has given you an independent mind, a spirit that dares to explore, a commitment to inclusivity, and a heart that reaches out to others and sees others with gentler eyes,” he said. “I hope it has transformed you and that it will help you develop the will to tackle the real problems that confront our world, and move our society in the direction we need to go to, and thrive.”The ceremony is not intended to serve as a replacement for Commencement. Graduates and families wishing to learn more about receiving diplomas and walking in May are invited to contact the FAS Registrar’s Office and the Harvard Alumni Association.
Apple Inc.’s refusal to help the FBI retrieve information from an iPhone belonging to one of the shooters in the terrorist attack in San Bernardino, Calif., has thrust the tug-of-war on the issue of privacy vs. security back into the spotlight.As the legal wrangling to untangle the case widens, the Gazette spoke separately with George Bemis Professor of Law Jonathan Zittrain and cyber-security expert Michael Sulmeyer about the inherent tensions in the case, in which two important principles of American life are at odds. Zittrain is co-founder of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society, which examines law, ethics, and the intersection of the Internet and civil society. Sulmeyer directs the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs’ Cyber Security Project, which investigates the effects and consequences of new technology on international security, political and economic development, and social welfare.Zittrain and Sulmeyer said that although aspects of this case are unique, national security and privacy have collided before, and technology’s rapid evolution will continue to make any balance between the two a moving target. GAZETTE: Do Apple and other tech companies have an ethical duty to assist the government in matters of national security?SULMEYER: My own thinking is that most companies, most of the time, actually do want to be helpful in matters of national security. I think what we’re seeing in this particular case is a manifestation of the trust between the tech companies and the government, not a fundamental disagreement over the need to respect privacy and the need to ensure the national security.ZITTRAIN: There are surely instances where a company should weigh the ethics of its decisions, and taken only on its own terms, this would appear to be such a case — especially because there’s no legal barrier to Apple helping out. But the circumstances here give rise to additional ethical and policy considerations. What are the second-order effects of Apple’s actively writing software to defeat its own security, and what might such practices do to the overall technology ecosystem? In other words, we need to stay focused on not just the urgent, but the important.GAZETTE: If Apple complies with the FBI’s request, does this open the door to future emergency requests from law enforcement?ZITTRAIN: It surely does. Here, the government isn’t just seeking information in Apple’s custody, such as customer communications or a password. It’s asking Apple to undertake software engineering. That’s what makes this, out of the box, very different from the usual requests that law enforcement makes of a private company.The demand on Apple is for its engineers to write software to defeat the very thing that they built to prevent [the phone’s security] from being cracked. If one government asks for that, so will others — indeed others might do it whether or not the U.S. successfully carries through with its demand.SULMEYER: It may, it may not. It all depends on how Apple chooses to implement a particular solution, and what standards the government requires in this case. You can understand why the tech companies view this as a slippery slope, but it doesn’t have to be.GAZETTE: How do you balance privacy concerns with national security?SULMEYER: This is not the first time that privacy and national security have created some friction for each other. In the ’70s, we had the eventual creation of the FISA [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act] rules and the separate court. There have been ways of adapting to technology over time, but still with due consideration to core values. I think it’s this balance between interests and values that government and the private sector have always negotiated and continue to negotiate. There’s never a government policy or decision that isn’t some mix of interest and values. This just happens to be the latest manifestation of how our national security interests and privacy values create some friction.Whether the solution is going to look like past solutions, that I can’t tell you. It’s important to be able to have these kinds of discussions between the government and the tech community in a little bit more confidence, so that they negotiate proposals and ideas. There will be a time for scrutiny and for public comment and review and discussion. But it seems to me there also needs to be an antecedent period of time where they can try to get to ground truth with each other. We can get there; we can get to a positive solution where multiple parties feel like they’ve been successful. It just doesn’t look that way at the moment.ZITTRAIN: The usual way we strike a balance is through a legislature — like the U.S. Congress — trying to very mindfully strike a balance and to set boundaries on when and how law enforcement can make requests, and how those requests can be made publicly known so that they can be debated later. And an independent judiciary can weigh the legislature’s action against what the Constitution permits.But there’s a larger looming question. It’s not squarely brought by this case, but it’s close: “Should Apple and other companies be able to build tools that they themselves can’t crack?” (Shredder companies aren’t told to hold back on how many cross-cuts their shredders make in their customers’ sensitive documents.)This question is not squarely joined here because it seems like Apple, with enough effort, can crack its own security. But there are successive versions of iPhones that Apple could build — especially in the wake of a situation like this — that would be intended to be immune to the kind of order in this case. That’s what I meant by second-order effects. And if Apple doesn’t do it, others, including overseas manufacturers, can.That’s part of the so called “going dark” debate for which the Berkman Center just released a report coming out of a group with a very diverse membership. That debate is a much bigger one, with higher stakes. And to start demanding limits on what people’s hardware and software can do is a much heavier lift for the government to make.GAZETTE: Is Apple’s stance a principled stand in reaction to Snowden/WikiLeaks [cases of the past], or is it more of a branding and business decision?ZITTRAIN: They’re surely blended. Apple in particular has held out the fact that its business model, unlike some of its competitors — including Google — is not driven by advertising, which then in turn is driven by those companies processing personal information.Apple may have found some traction, if not in the market itself, in market observers thanking them for that position and encouraging them to take it further.But it’s tricky for Apple to have gone public with this, when I think in the public’s eye it looks like a no-brainer that they should offer help to get into this particular phone. Apple may feel that if it ends up compelled to help in this case, it may as a practical matter be very difficult to produce phones that governments around the world can’t demand access to.SULMEYER: It’s hard to say [whether Apple’s stance is principled or not]. I would not claim to be in touch with the climate and culture of Silicon Valley. But just like we talked about the government having its interests and its values, a lot of times its values are going to reflect and inform each other. I don’t think Apple’s being disingenuous, but neither do I think the tech companies are inclined to go out of their way to do things that will hurt their business interests. In any event, I don’t think they’re trying to hurt national security.GAZETTE: Now that there’s a stalemate, what do you expect will happen next, and how does this battle affect Apple’s business?SULMEYER: The good news for Apple is they make a great product and people like it. So, it’s an open question whether and how the resolution of this particular issue affects the overall perception of the product. The good news for Apple is that if they continue to make good products, that carries a lot of weight. But it would not be surprising if further litigation ensued.ZITTRAIN: Apple isn’t exactly refusing the government’s order; it’s not refusing to play ball. By continuing the legal process it’s precisely playing ball: asking the judiciary to fully weigh in on what the limits of government demands should be here. If it loses, it will no doubt undertake to obey the government order. That’s how the rule of law should work. In the meantime, I suppose the phone will sit in the FBI’s custody for a while — in a baggie in a drawer — while litigation settles a bit more the proper application of the All Writs Act and the extent to which Apple should have to make its engineers cooperate in creating the software needed to defeat the protections on the its phone.The real question is what their future phones will look like and how much of a role the U.S. and other governments will seek to play in trying to limit how Apple can build them.GAZETTE: Is Apple’s encryption really that good, or is the request an indication that the government’s technical sophistication is pretty weak?ZITTRAIN: This doesn’t have to do with the government’s lack of sophistication. Instead it has to do with Apple being uniquely positioned to sign certificates to make an Apple phone accept a software upgrade that it would otherwise reject, and that upgrade — a security downgrade, to be clear — would be what would make it possible to test lots of passwords against the phone until the government gets the right one.This interview has been lightly edited for clarity and length.