Notre Dame ReSources - May 21, 1999

Author: Dennis Brown

The following Notre Dame faculty are available for additional comment on these people and events in the news:
p. Israeli elections : The election of Ehud Barak as prime minister of Israel confirms the emergence of a centrist approach to the nation’s political structures, according to Alan Dowty , professor of government and international studies at Notre Dame. “Ehud Barak’s decisive defeat of Benjamin Netanyahu in Israel’s prime ministerial race is being greeted as a critical turning point,” Dowty says. “But isn’t every Israeli election a watershed event? Only three years ago, Netanyahu’s narrow upset of Shimon Peres changed the entire complexion of Middle East politics. And in the election before that, in 1992, Yitzhak Rabin’s victory set the stage for the 1993 breakthrough in the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. Actually most Israeli elections before that were not so decisive. The biggest turning point was in 1977, when Israel’s first right-wing government ended half a century of domination by Labor Zionist parties. But the elections of 1981, 1984, and 1988 all produced deadlock, forcing the left and the right to share power in uneasy coalitions. Initially the balance between the two blocs was held by religious parties, though as time passed these parties became increasingly identified with the right. What has happened in the 1990s is that a centrist bloc, which had never really existed in Israeli politics, has emerged to replace religious parties as the ‘balancer’ in the system.” *For further comment, contact Professor Dowty at (219) 631-5098 or at

  • p. Slotting fees : A new study coauthored by a University of Notre Dame marketing professor provides the first comprehensive academic analysis of “slotting fees” ? the controversial practice of retailers and wholesalers requiring a payment from manufacturers before agreeing to allocate shelf or warehouse space to the manufacturers’ product. Introduced in the 1980s, slotting fees (or allowances) have become prevalent in the grocery industry and are becoming increasingly common in other business sectors including computer software, books, magazines, apparel, over-the-counter drugs, alcoholic beverages and tobacco products. These payments usually are negotiated in secrecy and required in advance, without public disclosure of their terms. “This practice comes in all different shapes and forms,” said Gregory T. Gundlach , associate professor of marketing at Notre Dame. “It’s really happening in grocery stores, but it’s expanding into many other areas, also.” *For further comment, contact Professor Gundlach at (219) 631-5171 or at
  • p. Brazilian politics : Stanford University Press has published “Rethinking Party Systems in the Third Wave of Democratization: The Case of Brazil,” a new book by Scott P. Mainwaring, Eugene and Helen Conley Professor of Government and International Studies and executive director of the Kellogg Institute for International Studies at the University of Notre Dame. From a theoretical perspective, Mainwaring argues that most party systems in the third wave of global democratization ? that is, since 1974 ? have distinctive features that must be examined in a new light. In the case of Brazil, he provides empirical evidence that reveals a weak party system that has resulted in problems with democratization. He explores reasons for the difficulties in party building in Brazil and addresses the consequences of weak institutionalization, which leads him to reaffirm the central significance of political parties in the face of widespread skepticism about their importance. *For further comment, contact Professor Mainwaring at (219) 631-8530 or at
  • p. Cadmium : Notre Dame researcher Jinesh C. Jain has discovered higher concentrations of cadmium in the durum wheat ? the variety used to make pasta ? grown in the United States and Canada than that grown in other parts of the world. The likely reason for the disparity, according to Jain, is that North American farmers apply more phosphate-based fertilizers, which often contain small amounts of cadmium, a heavy metal that accumulates in the body and has been tied to kidney disease and prostate cancer. The elevated levels of cadmium found in North American wheat are not thought to be harmful, but researchers are concerned that more of the element is getting into water and soils via industrial pollution and other sources, which ultimately may lead to higher concentrations in the food chain. For further comment, contact Jain at (219) 631-9049.
    p. Latin America : Leading scholars and activists in Latin American human rights analyze some of the region’s most pressing problems ? including lack of accountability, police brutality and the need for judicial reform ? in a new book coedited by Guillermo O’Donnell , Helen Kellogg Professor of Government and International Studies at Notre Dame. Published by Notre Dame Press, “The (Un)Rule of Law and the Underprivileged in Latin America” is the fourth part of Project Latin America 2000 undertaken by the Kellogg Institute for International Studies at Notre Dame. *For a copy of the book, contact Julie Dudrick at (219) 631-6346 or at
  • p. Ecumenism : A new book edited by Notre Dame theologian Lawrence Cunningham and published by Notre Dame Press assesses the state of ecumenism in Christianity today. “Ecumenism: Present Realities and Future Prospects” is a collection of the work presented at a 1997 conference in Jerusalem commemorating the 25th anniversary of the Ecumenical Institute for Theological Studies. Among the contributors to the book are Rev. Edward A. Malloy, C.S.C. , president of Notre Dame and a professor of theology, and Rabbi Michael Signer , Abrams Professor of Jewish Thought and Culture at Notre Dame. Established jointly by Notre Dame and Pope Paul VI, the Ecumenical Institute is located just inside Jerusalem on the road to Bethlehem. Initially a center for theological inquiry and discussion among the divided communities of Christendom, the institute has expanded its programs to include ecumenical scholarship and interreligious dialogue between Christians and those of other world faiths, especially Jews and Muslims. For a copy of the book, contact Julie Dudrick at (219) 631-6346 or at . For further comment, contact Professor Cunningham at (219) 631-7137.

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