Project Description:We can't hold representatives accountable for how well they represent their constituents unless we get constituents participating in their political process. Our plan to get citizens to participate in their political process and thereby produce engaging and important metrics such as to get them to do that we need to produce engaging metrics for them - such as identify their political ideology, their district ideology, how their representative's voting behavior aligns with their district. (EDIT AR: These metrics create a clear picture of where you, the bills that are being voted on, and the representative stand in relation to each other with respect to fiscal and social dimensions of the political spectrum. With this picture in the hands of constituents, ordinary citizens now have a powerful tool to determine if representatives are accurately representing them. Accountability is created and corrupt, non-representative legislative actions become politically costly. In addition, accountability is also created with respect to legislative Bill's creators and co-signers by showing you the kind of legislation they are creating and how it aligns with your political spectrum.)
Team Members:Nick Mastronardi, Tim Booher, Don Kahn, Mark Coyne, Lia Mastronardi, Dylan Cooper, Kyle Rivers, Adam Rosszay, Leo Blondel, Juan Mena, Betty Lo, Kriz, Ari
How can we improve the U.S. House of Representatives annual ethics training of congressional staff? The team is looking at alternative to the current proprietary method. The new system would have a number of advantages: It would be open source, reducing cost; provide a more interactive experience; have better analytics; and would be designed to promote dialogue and discussion, unlike the current system.
Project Description: The team is developing a means to free data locked in pdf files so that it can be easily downloaded into an Excel file for analysis and comparison. The proposed mechanism has the potention not only to enable expanded data consideration of Community Development Authorities, the original research subject, but a whole range of bond issues on the Municipal Securities Rulemaking Board website. Such analysis can better educate citizens, local government officials, and buyers of municipal bonds and shine a brighter light on the financial products created and sold by Wall Street.
Project Description: Studies have shown that bankers often collude together to manipulate the the London Interbank Offered Rate(Libor). Since banks are not required to make their transaction prices public, the interbank offered rate is calculated by simply asking banks the rate they would borrow at - a system that is easily gamed. Our project goal is to develop a benchmark interest rate based on the closest available public data that is of comparable term and risk category. This will be a website where the public can view the benchmark interest rate for the current day.
Team Members: Katherine Sliz Carson, Naushard Cader, James Butler, Quan Do, Mike Dombroski, Attal, John,
Project Description: The Academic Independence Project at the Edmond J. Safra Research Lab is run by Szelena Gray and Sujay Tyle. It is a one year study of academic capture, or potential bias in the research undertakings, publications, and teachings of academicians — and new proposals to combat it.
Regulatory capture, a well-defined term, is the bias that regulators have when monitoring and assessing the individuals and groups who they are indirectly receiving compensation from. For the first time, this is being applied to the academic setting. With the prevalence of influence from the private and public sector on academics, there is no doubt of the potential of bias to pervade findings in research investigations, topics and tone of publications, and choices of lessons plans even with current disclosure requirements present at several of these academic institutions. Consulting arrangements or board memberships, for example, have the power to potentially influence one's research on a particular industry. Similarly, the availability of confidential data sets or external opinions and interviews can skew findings or undermine notable negative results towards the providers of such crucial information.
Through this capstone project, Szelena and Sujay with attempt to determine whether there are solutions to academic capture and what these potential remedies are.
ProfessorCert (http://professorcert.co.nf/) is a website created by Nikin Tharan to help professors prevent bias in their research publications. They log-in with their LinkedIn account, complete their profiles and answer a questionnaire. Upon completing the questionnaire, they receive an embed link of a certificate from the Academic Independence Project. The professors may integrate the certificate into research papers, personal profiles and other methods of expression to assure readers that they are not biased.