“Human Subjects Research Regulation: Perspectives on the Future,” edited by Professor I. Glenn Cohen ’03 and Holly Fernandez Lynch (2014, MIT)
Arising from a conference co-sponsored by the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard Law School, the volume offers perspectives on a regulatory system that “seems poorly equipped to deal with the realities of human subjects research in the twenty-first century,” according to Cohen and Lynch, the center’s faculty director and executive director, respectively. Considering a framework implemented—and then essentially unchanged for decades—in the aftermath of Nazi human experimentation and the Tuskegee syphilis study, 33 contributors write on possible improvements that may better protect subjects and advance research.
“Making Money: Coin, Currency, and the Coming of Capitalism,” by Professor Christine Desan (forthcoming, January 2015, Oxford)
Money may make the word go round, but, according to Desan, it was the reinvention of money that caused a little-understood revolution. In her book, the co-founder of Harvard’s Program on the Study of Capitalism focuses on “the old ways of making money, the revolution that redesigned that medium, and how that revolution disappeared from view.” She contends that the making of money has long shaped the English world, from “Sceattas,” early silver pennies in the eighth century, to what is considered modern money a thousand years later. And she draws a connection to the financial crisis of 2008 and how it demonstrates our continued lack of understanding about the way money works.
“Global Climate Change and U.S. Law,” 2nd edition, edited by Professor Jody Freeman LL.M. ’91 S.J.D. ’95 and Michael B. Gerrard (2014, ABA)
Much has changed since the first edition of this volume was published in 2007, according to the editors, including the U.S. Supreme Court decision in Massachusetts v. EPA, a U.N. climate conference, and further evidence demonstrating significant climate change. This edition features a new section on energy regulation and covers subjects such as geoengineering and cap and trade. Freeman, the founding director of the HLS Environmental Law and Policy Program, who served as counselor for energy and climate change earlier in the Obama White House, co-writes the book’s final chapter on possible future legislative efforts related to U.S. climate change law.
“Religion and Civil Society: The Changing Faces of Religion and Secularity,” edited by Professor Mary Ann Glendon and Rafael Alvira (2014, Georg Olms Verlag)
Glendon, former president of the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, contributes an essay to this volume, examining the relationship between religion and secularity in theory and in practice. Other contributors confront topics such as family and God in civil society, religious freedom, religious advocacy, and the role of religion in a multicultural world. Glendon, who previously served as U.S. ambassador to the Holy See, notes that religion has an influence on the development of civil society at the same time as trends in civil society have an influence on religion.
“Human Rights and the Uses of History,” by Professor Samuel Moyn ’01 (2014, Verso)
Following his book “The Last Utopia,” which examined the recent rise of human rights as a means to seek justice, Moyn in his new volume interprets some of the leading thinkers on human rights. Through this critical analysis, he considers topics such as human rights and the Holocaust, international courts, and liberal internationalism. Skeptical of humanitarian justifications for intervention, he writes,“[H]uman rights history should turn away from ransacking the past as if it provided good support for the astonishingly specific international movement of the last few decades.”
“Valuing Life: Humanizing the Regulatory State,” by Professor Cass R. Sunstein ’78 (2014, Chicago)
Before he returned to teach at Harvard Law in 2012, Sunstein served as administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs, a position in which he focused on “humanizing cost-benefit analysis.” In this book, he writes about this government experience—how things worked and the officials he worked with—as well as difficult questions of valuation, including valuing risk and human life. Through discussions of behavioral economics (a centerpiece of his well-known book “Nudge”), psychology, and real-life cases, he shows the need for regulation that both calculates costs and benefits and considers human consequences.