In brief

Mobilizing for globalizing

The University’s Committee on Global Thought is reaching out to faculty and students for suggestions on new curricular and research initiatives related to globalization. Committee members Akeel Bilgrami, Partha Chatterjee, Nicholas Dirks, Michael Doyle, Carol Gluck, Katharina Pistor, and Joseph Stiglitz, all Columbia faculty, also have launched pilot courses and organized symposia. The committee is accepting applications until April 1 for postdoctoral fellows for the 2007–08 academic year. For information, e-mail Gustav Peebles at gp2119@columbia.edu.

New Jack

Thomas Jackiewicz ’94PH, who previously was associate vice chancellor for finance and administration at the medical school and teaching hospital of the University of California, San Diego, is the new chief operating officer of Columbia University Medical Center. Working closely with CUMC head Lee Goldman, Jackiewicz oversees day-to-day operations at the medical center and coordinates space-planning initiatives.

Forde, Tsakopoulos named trustees

Physician Kenneth Forde ’59PS and land developer Kyriakos Tsakopoulos ’93CC were welcomed as new University trustees at the board’s quarterly October meeting. Forde, a professor emeritus of clinical surgery at Columbia’s College of Physicians and Surgeons, began teaching at Columbia in 1966 and held the José M. Ferrer Chair in Surgery from 1997 to 2006. Tsakopoulos is president and CEO of KT Communities, a land-development company based in Placer County, California. In 2004, a gift from Tsakopoulos established the Kyriakos Tsakopoulos Chair in Hellenic Studies. Forde and Tsakopoulos take the place of outgoing trustees John Chalsty and George Van Amson ’74CC.

The Gates are open

Columbia’s Earth Institute has received a $15 million grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to alleviate poverty, disease, and hunger in Africa. The institute’s experts in agriculture, engineering, hydrology, public health, and other disciplines are implementing strategies to achieve sustainable development in ten of Africa’s poorest countries. Their work is part of a United Nations project called the Millennium Development Goals, involving eight interrelated objectives to address the needs of those living in extreme poverty. Visit www.earth.columbia.edu.

Makino’s memories

Columbia’s C. V. Starr East Asian Library is acquiring a collection of rare film materials owned by Japanese documentary filmmaker and movie historian Makino Mamoru. Chronicling the history of Japanese and East Asian film, the Makino archive contains 80,000 items dating from the start of Japanese film production during the Meiji period in the late 19th century and continuing to the present. It includes full runs of trade-press and fan periodicals, flyers, posters, and other rare publicity materials. Of particular interest to scholars are several original scenarios with directors’ shooting notes and handbooks used by narrators of Japanese silent films.  Curators expect that the collection will be transferred from Makino’s home outside Tokyo to Columbia gradually over the next five years.

Family values

Robert Yik-Fong Tam ’50BUS, a Hong Kong–based banker and investment manager who died in 2004, left Columbia a bequest of $14.2 million, the University announced this fall. At the same time, his sister, Wun Tsun Tam, an educator who also died in 2004, left nearly $15 million to Columbia. The money will be used to create matching funds to endow faculty chairs, to support academic programs in the Arts and Sciences and at the business school, the new Committee on Global Thought, and the C.V. Starr East Asian Library.