News and views from the University of Notre Dame

Author: Dennis Brown

Microsoft: In the wake of Monday’s ruling that Microsoft Corporation violated antitrust laws, the massive software company faces a future filled with appeals, lawsuits, penalties and ? though unlikely ? even its breakup, according to a Notre Dame Law School professor. “My guess is that the chances of the ultimate structural remedy ? the breakup of Microsoft ? are only about 50-50,” said Joseph Bauer , professor of law and an expert on antitrust laws. “What’s more likely are injunctive remedies that would require Microsoft to change its relationships with both competitors and customers. These would be designed to limit its market power and, in time, to erode it.” Bauer added that the Microsoft case has positive implications that go far beyond the specific ruling. “The broader impact of this case is that it says something about the renewed role of the antitrust laws,” Bauer said. “These laws are designed to promote consumer welfare, and the fact that the Department of Justice pursued the Microsoft case so vigorously shows that there is renewed commitment to enforcing them.” *Professor Bauer can be reached for further comment at (219)-631-6514; .

  • p. Invasive species: Notre Dame biologistDavid Lodge has been appointed chair of the Invasive Species Advisory Committee by Secretary of the Interior Bruce Babbitt. The committee provides information and formulates plans on how best to deal with issues such as the invasion of the zebra mussel in the Great Lakes and the outbreak of the West Nile-like virus in New York. “Invasive species constitute one of the most important environmental issues in the world, and one that is just being recognized as such,” Lodge , a professor of biological sciences, told Notre Dame’s newspaper, The Observer. “One of the major difficulties in dealing with invasive species is that you can’t pass one law to keep all species out. There are thousands of ways they can get into the country. While we all benefit from certain exotic species, such as vegetables and fruits, we need to be concerned about invasive species that impact human health negatively and bring about loss of biodiversity.” *Professor Lodge can be reached for further comment at (219) 631-6094 or l .
  • p. Russia: Notre Dame political scientist Martha Merritt says newly elected Russian President Vladimir Putin now must quickly shift from campaigning to governing. “Putin has been less than forthcoming about his government’s composition and political orientation,” says Merritt, who was in Moscow to observe the election. “This has allowed him to appear simultaneously as a pragmatic reformer in the West and a national conservative in Russia. While the president is no doubt enjoying a reprieve from the often savagely critical world of Russian politics, it is more than time for him to show his face and make the hard choices that will consolidate Russian democracy.” *Professor Merritt can be reached for further comment at (219) 631-7695 or at .
  • p. Human Genome Project: A new book edited by Notre Dame’s Phillip R. Sloan takes an interdisciplinary look at the often controversial Human Genome Project. In “Controlling Our Destinies,” published by Notre Dame Press, scholars from the fields of philosophy, history, ethics, theology and the natural sciences examine the complex and far-reaching issues surrounding the project. Contributors discuss the historical background of the project, issues behind the concepts of “code” and “genes,” the implicit reductionism in contemporary human genetics, and the challenge the project presents for theological perspectives on human life. Sloan is a professor in the Program of Liberal Studies and director of Notre Dame’s Program in Science, Technology and Values. *Professor Sloan can be reached for comment on the Human Genome Project at (219) 631-5221 or 631-5015 or .
  • p. Wall Street: Recent reports of talks between the New York Stock Exchange and the National Association of Securities Dealers (Nasdaq) are a “symptom of the tremendous pressure all exchanges are under today as a result of the rapidly changing technology,” says Paul Schultz , John W. and Maude Clarke Professor of Finance at Notre Dame and coauthor of an acclaimed study that led to the restructuring of Nasdaq. “Today, individual investors can easily access the same information through the Internet that professional traders use. Moreover, they can now trade directly with each other through the Internet without the intermediation services that exchanges have traditionally provided. In the next few years, we will see tremendous changes in the way securities are traded.” *Professor Schultz can be reached for further comment at (219) 631-3338 or .
  • p. Mozambique: The recent massive flooding in Mozambique “could not have happened at a worse time,” according to Carolyn Nordstrom , associate professor of anthropology at Notre Dame and author of a book on the country’s 1976-92 civil war. “Mozambique has been a model for successfully implementing and maintaining its peace accord, and for national development,” Nordstrom noted. “These successes stand out as exceptional given the fact that it is among the world’s poorest countries, in part because the war left virtually all of its infrastructure in ruins. Mozambicans have a remarkable culture of self-reliance, democracy and social reconstruction, but the impact of hundreds of thousands being turned out of their homes and livelihoods by water less than a decade after they were left homeless by war is a devastating blow. It can only be lessened by continued humanitarian assistance from the world’s donor communities.” *Professor Nordstrom can be reached for further comment at (219) 631-8819 or .
  • p. Catholic universities: Sister Alice Gallin, O.S.U. , a life trustee of Notre Dame and former executive director of the Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities, has written a new book titled “Negotiating Identity: Catholic Higher Education since 1960.” Published by Notre Dame Press , the book reviews developments in Catholic higher education during the past four decades and examines the process by which these institutions acclimated themselves to the standards of the American academy and, at the same time, attempted to retain their Catholic characters and missions. For more information, contact Julie Dudrick, director of promotions for Notre Dame Press, at (219) 631-6346. p. Fundamentalism: The capacity of religious belief to inspire both peaceful and violent social action among people of the same faith traditions is explored in a new book by Notre Dame historian R. Scott Appleby . Published by Rowman&Littlefield, “The Ambivalence of the Sacred: Religion, Violence, and Reconciliation” examines the contradictory responses of believers to suffering and injustice. One of the world’s leading authorities on religious fundamentalisms, Appleby explores what religiously motivated terrorists and religiously inspired peacemakers share in common and what prompts them to radically opposite paths in fighting injustice. He also examines how a deeper understanding of religious extremism can and must be integrated more effectively into worldwide thinking about tribal, regional and international conflict. *Professor Appleby can be reached for comment on his new book and issues related to religious fundamentalism at (219) 631-5441 or .

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