UCLA In the News lists selected mentions of UCLA in the world’s news media. Some articles may require registration or a subscription to view. See more UCLA In the News.

Why ‘Star Wars’ keeps bombing in China | New York Times

“That basically wiped out the first six films of the franchise,” said Michael Berry, a professor of Chinese literature and film at the University of California, Los Angeles. “It didn’t have the opportunity to get its hooks in.”

Why is air pollution so harmful? DNA may hold the answer | New York Times

Some genetic adaptations may have increased our vulnerability to diseases linked to air pollution. It is “a really creative, interesting contribution to evolutionary medicine,” said Molly Fox, an anthropologist at the University of California, Los Angeles, who was not involved in the new study.

U.S. News releases its rankings of the best online college programs for 2020 | Forbes

Engineering (96 colleges): 1. Columbia University (Fu Foundation) (tie); 1. University of California—Los Angeles (Samueli) (tie)

Trump’s joint-employer rule curbs wage theft lawsuits, but not in California | Los Angeles Times

California has the country’s strongest wage and hour laws, with a higher minimum wage and a lower threshold for overtime than federal law, noted Tia Koonse, a research manager at the UCLA Labor Center. “Most workers wouldn’t sue under [federal law] because they’d recover more money using state laws,” Koonse said. “So this new federal rule doesn’t have any practical impact. California is the envy of other states for its protections for precariously employed workers.”

UCLA announces inaugural director of The Promise Armenian Institute | Asbaraz

The University of California, Los Angeles’ International Institute announced the appointment of Ann R. Karagozian, Distinguished Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, as the inaugural director of The Promise Armenian Institute. Prof. Karagozian currently heads UCLA’s Energy and Propulsion Research Laboratory and is the director of the joint UCLA-Air Force Research Laboratory Collaborative Center for Aerospace Sciences. She has been a faculty member in the Mechanical and Aerospace Department at UCLA since 1982.

In search of the brain’s social road maps | Scientific American

The progression from the physical to the abstract carries over into the way the brain represents social relationships. Various bits of knowledge about another person are distilled into the concept of that individual. When we see a photograph of someone or hear or see that person’s name, the same hippocampal cells will fire, regardless of the sensory details of the stimulus (for example, the famous “Jennifer Aniston neuron” described by Itzhak Fried of the University of California, Los Angeles, and his colleagues). These hippocampal cells are responsible for representing concepts of specific individuals.

The U.S. has fallen behind on equality of the sexes | CNN Opinion

(Commentary co-written by UCLA’s Jody Heymann, Amy Raub and Aleta Sprague) We have released a new study that shows that the US is one of just 28 nations that has failed to provide an explicit guarantee of equal rights or non-discrimination on the basis of sex or gender. Globally, the US now lags 165 other nations with stronger constitutional protections for women…. It’s been a century since the U.S. constitution was amended to ensure that the right to vote could not be denied or abridged on the basis of sex. It’s time to finish the job and expand equal rights to include full equal protection under the law.

San Diego County cities push back on state-mandated housing goals | San Diego Union-Tribune

A lack of enforcement has been one of the biggest criticisms of the entire process, particularly when it comes to building more affordable housing units, according to a 2019 paper co-written by UCLA professors Paavo Monkkonen, Michael Manville and Spike Friedman. “RHNA only requires that cities demonstrate, in their plans, that they have space that can potentially hold the needed income-restricted houses,” the report states. “But nothing in the law ensures that any income-restricted housing will actually be built, nor that these potential sites of income-restricted housing must actually be reserved for that purpose.”

Most of the world’s constitutions guarantee more rights than America’s | Quartz

In a study published today by UCLA, researchers compared the constitutions of 193 UN member states to assess which protect equal rights for its citizens irrespective of their differences, including gender, sexual orientation, income, and disability. “There is no opportunity for equality if people don’t have equal legal rights,” Jody Heymann, a UCLA School of Public Health professor who led the research, told Quartz. The fact that a right might be provided in a country’s constitution doesn’t guarantee that it is granted to its citizens, of course, yet it does create an important legal precedent.

Conversion therapy is killing kids. Texas needs to act | Houston Chronicle Opinion

A 2019 report by The Williams Institute at the UCLA School of Law estimated that 698,000 adults have been subjected to conversion therapy, and over half underwent this practice by the age of 18. Furthermore, an estimated 16,000 youth currently between the ages of 13 and 17 will be subjected to conversion therapy before they turn 18 in the 32 states — including Texas — where the practice is not banned.

What Greta Gerwig’s snub tells us about the Oscars and ‘Little Women’ | Ozy

“While things in Hollywood may be slowly improving, it’s still dominated by men,” says Kim Elsesser, a UCLA lecturer and author of “Sex and the Office,” “and there’s still bias that exists against women.”

How to prioritize sleep | MSN

Caffeine can stay in your system (and keep you awake) “for as long as six to eight hours,” Alon Avidan, MD, MPH, director of the UCLA Sleep Disorders Center, told POPSUGAR in a previous interview. Alcohol can also lead to fragmented sleep, Dr. Avidan added, while eating heavy, fatty foods close to bedtime can cause discomfort or issues with reflux.

Ten years on, Citizens United ruling has changed U.S. politics — but not in the way many feared | Los Angeles Times

Former Gov. Michael Dukakis of Massachusetts, the 1988 Democratic presidential nominee who teaches each winter at the Luskin School of Public Affairs at UCLA, called the notion that a corporation had 1st Amendment rights “outrageous,” adding: “The Founders who wrote the Constitution would be astonished. The right has been peddling this idea for years, and it’s nonsense.”

Electric scooter injuries rising; one-third involve the head | Reuters

For one thing, “most doctors probably don’t even know that there is a code for injuries that are scooter related,” said Dr. Joann Elmore, a professor of medicine at the University of California, Los Angeles, who wasn’t involved in the current study. And the studies “don’t include the likely more common and more numerous outpatient visits to primary care providers.”

Virginia Democrats won an election. Gun owners are talking civil war | The Guardian (U.K.)

Not one of the Virginia Democrats’ proposed gun laws has been found to be unconstitutional by the US supreme court, and most of them have been repeatedly upheld by federal courts as consistent with the second amendment, according to Adam Winkler, a law professor at the University of California Los Angeles who specializes in gun policy.

Mexico is doing the U.S.’s ‘dirty work,’ say researchers as border apprehensions decline for 7th month in a row | Time

Central Americans have also not stopped attempting to migrate north, according to Jason De León, a professor of anthropology and Chicana/o and Central American studies at the University of California, Los Angeles, who is also the director of the Undocumented Migration Project, a long-term study of unauthorized border crossing. “We have made it more dangerous to cross Mexico, and much more expensive, and we’ve prolonged the process, but people are still very much coming,” he says.

California’s inept central planners | Orange County Register Opinion

Most devastating of all, these policies offer no relief for the working-class population. UCLA and London School of Economics Professor Michael Storper’s recent study shows that forced densification is a “blunt instrument” more likely to destroy and reduce affordability, particularly in urban areas. It constitutes instead what he describes as “a mechanism of displacement. “

Lime is the latest e-scooter operator to downsize | Marketplace

According to Juan Matute, director of the UCLA Institute of Transportation Studies, the markets Lime is pulling out of offer evidence of a physical obstacle to widespread scooter adoption: they’re all Sunbelt cities that revolve around cars. “That makes integrating bikes, scooters and other lower-speed mobility options very challenging,” he said.

Four tired old ‘gaysian’ stereotypes that need to die in 2020 | Queerty

Currently, Asians comprise about 60% of the world population. 60%! But based on UCLA’s 2019 Hollywood Diversity Report, Asians make up only 3.4% of all film roles in Hollywood. With the success of 2018’s “Crazy Rich Asians” and 2019’s “Parasite” and “The Farewell,” it’s no wonder that the same report found that Asian leads produced a higher median global box office than their white counterparts ($93.0 million vs. $51.2 million). So it pays to put Asians in the lead. Tens of millions of dollars, in fact.

These dark matter ‘clumps’ help explain the material that makes up most of the universe | Vice

The effect is like “a giant magnifying glass,” said lead author Daniel Gilman, an astrophysicist at UCLA, in a statement. “Small dark matter clumps act as small cracks on the magnifying glass, altering the brightness and position of the four quasar images compared to what you would expect to see if the glass were smooth.” (Also: Universe Today)

Are films and TV shows getting more diverse? | Marketplace

“Quite simply, people want to see their own experiences reflected on the screen,” said UCLA’s Darnell Hunt.

Welcome to Max Hooper Schneider’s disturbing dystopian extravaganza | Los Angeles Times Review

The [UCLA] Hammer Museum’s apse-like Vault gallery is put to spectacular use in Max Hooper Schneider’s show, his first solo museum appearance. Last year, the L.A. artist included two mesmerizing aquarium installations at the gallery Jenny’s, using the hobbyist vitrines to conjure miniature consumerist dystopias, shrines to artifice and junk. His singular environment at the Hammer feels like a fleshed-out, amped-up, walk-in version of those pieces, fascinating in its alienness, disturbing in its familiarity.

Want just one rule for productivity? Eliminate residue | Medium Column

UCLA’s Center on Everyday Lives and Families found that women who live in homes with piles of clutter have higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol, compared to women in less cluttered environments.