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Baker Buzz

News and Events from the Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy

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Ice Cream cones filled with brightly colored sherbert

Ice Cream Social 

Are you looking to get involved in student programming at the Baker Center? Join us for the ice cream social to learn about student engagement opportunities this year. The ice cream social will take place on August 18th, 2021 at 5:00 pm in the Toyota Auditorium at the Howard Baker Center. If you are unable to attend, but still wish to become involved this year, contact Dr. Jon Ring ( with questions.

Don't miss us at the Student Engagement Fair! 

Join us at the Student Engagement Fair to learn more about student programs and opportunities at the Center! Chat with current students to learn about their experiences and pick up save-the-dates for upcoming events. Hosted by the Center for Student Engagement, the fair will take place on August 20, 2021 from 6 to 9:00 pm on Pedestrian Walkway


Appalachain Leadership Institute Logo

Appalachian Leadership Institute graduates second annual cohort of leaders

Thirty-eight fellows recently graduated as the second cohort from the Appalachian Leadership Institute. The Appalachian Leadership Institute is a comprehensive leadership and economic development training opportunity for people who live and/or work in Appalachia and are passionate about helping their communities thrive. Fellows participate in an extensive training curriculum developed by the Appalachian Regional Commission in partnership with the University of Tennessee, Knoxville; The Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy; Tuskegee University; and Collective Impact and co-instructed by the Center's Associate Director Dr. Katie Cahill and Dr. Tim Ezzell, Leadership & Governance fellow from the Department of Political Science.
The 2021 cohort celebrated with a hybrid ceremony in Washington, D.C. The  Center is proud of all the graduates and looks forward to seeing all they accomplish in our region! Read more here. 
Intergovernmental panel on climate change logo

Energy & Environment Fellow Collaborates on International Climate Change Research

Energy & Environment Fellow Dr. David McCollum co-authored a report with the climate change mitigation working group for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The working group is one of three formed to conduct the Sixth Assessment Report, which will synthesize IPCC analysis and recommendations for policymakers, set to be released by 2022. The group's recent report, "Transparency and integrated assessment modeling" discusses Integrated assessment models (IAMs), which "connect trends in future socioeconomic and technological development with impacts on the environment, such as global climate change." You can read the assessment here
Coal power plants emiting smoke into the air

Energy & Environment Fellow Advises Visiting Dutch Master's Student

Dr. Paul Armsworth of the Department of Ecology & Evolutionary Biology co-authored a recent article for Ecological Economics, "Land trust investments in land protection may increase philanthropic giving to conservation." Armsworth worked alongside researchers from the Nature Conservancy as well as a visiting graduate student from the Forest and Nature Conservancy Policy group at the University of Wageningen in the Netherlands, Arne Pinnschmidt. The researchers examined how conservation NGOs finance land protection strategies; read the full report here.
Coal power plants emiting smoke into the air

Energy & Environment Fellow Publishes Book 

"Incomparable Values: Analysis, Axiomatics, and Applications" by Dr. John Nolt, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy, is now available for pre-order to be shipped in early 2022. The book synthesizes nearly ten years of research to examine the great variety of partially ordered value structures, exposing fallacies that arise from overlooking them. Read more here

Teaching & Engagement


Student Programs Director's Research Promotes Active Learning in Political Science Courses

Dr. Jon Ring, Director of Student Programs, was recently published in the Journal of Political Science EducationHis article discusses "gaming" in the classroom and provides tools for instructors to implement innovative teaching strategies in their classrooms. The "gateway game" can be easily introduced in a variety of political science courses and is shown to excite and motivate students. Read more, here. Additionally, Dr. Ring will be featured in the Palgrave Handbook of Political Research Pedagogy, which is available for pre-order now. His chapter is titled "The Savvy Consumer of Political Science Research.” 
clip art city scape in front of a background with pink slips and a

Wanamaker shares expertise with Politico and The Wall Street Journal

As an expert consultant on Politico's Policy Hackathon, the Center's Executive Director Dr. Marianne Wanamaker commented on the relationships between employees and employers, and the impact that those relationships have on the labor market. Read more here. She also recently provided analysis of the potential impact of the Delta variant of COVID-19 for The Wall Street Journal. Read the full article here.
SMART logo

Leadership & Governance Fellow to lead growth at the Institute for Public Service

As of July 1, Research Fellow Dr. Macel Ely of the UT Institute for Public Service began a new role as the Director of Organizational Improvement for all six agencies of the UT Institute for Public Service, a recently created position at the Institute. Until October 31, he will continue to act in his previous position as the Director of the Naifeh Center for Effective Leadership. 
US-Philippine relations

Global Security Fellow Dr. Matt Beuhler promoted to tenured professor

Global Security Fellow Dr. Matt Buehler of the Department of Political Science was promoted with tenure to Associate Professor. 

Student Engagement

protest for stop AAPI hate

Global Security Program invites students to apply for the DHS Invent2Prevent Initiative

In partnership with the Office of Asia Engagement, we will soon accept applications for the Invent2Prevent program sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security. In the program, a small team of students will design and implement a tool or creative initiative to address discrimination, extremism, and violence against Asian Americans & Pacific Islanders (AAPI) in the US. Students will have the ability to earn credit, will have access to an operating budget, and could earn the chance to present their work at DHS in Washington, D.C. This opportunity will allow students to gain practical experience in project management, political communication, and public policy while making a difference here on campus, in the community and state, and across the nation
In-Person Information Session: August 12th at 3 pm 
Room 207/208 in the Howard Baker Cente
Applications Due: August 20th by 5 pm 
Apply Here
First Meeting: August 26th at 5 pm
Contact Dr. Jon Ring ( with questions.
emerald youth foundatino

Knoxville nonprofit hiring through Americorps

Emerald Youth, a nonprofit supporting Knoxville's children, is hiring to fill an immediate need for part-time roles through the AmeriCorps program for a one-year commitment. The program looks for individuals who are community and mission-driven and who enjoy working with young people in the heart of the city. If you are interested, visit the Emerald Youth Career website for more information. 
Tennessee state capital

CORE-19 continues to provide up-to-date information on COVID-19

The Coronavirus-19 Outbreak Response Experts (CORE-19) team at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, is a network of researchers in public health, economics, public policy, agriculture, veterinary medicine, and other disciplines who seek to provide timely information for the public and policymakers on pressing questions regarding the global pandemic. Researchers at the Center are working closely with the CORE-19 team to create a series of policy briefs forecasting the virus's health and economic impacts. For up-to-date, well-researched information on COVID-19, visit and follow the Baker Center on Twitter for updates on the pandemic @UTBakerCenter
Baker students with sen. lamar alexander

Get involved with the Baker Center

The Center is a home for civic engagement for students in all disciplines and at all levels. Through programs, events and lectures, and helpful faculty and staff, the Center aims to engage the community on the topics of Global Security, Leadership & Governance, and Energy & Environment. Visit for more information.
Some ways to get involved with the Center:
Contact Us
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Howard H. Baker Jr Center for Public Policy
1640 Cumberland Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37996
Phone: 865-974-0931
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