News & Updates

Mid-Week Reads

by | Mar 30, 2016 | Other

Every week, North Star will take some time out of our schedules to bring you our favorite reads from the past week.

Jeff Van Wychen

Look to the Insects.

This article critiques a new book by American biologist David Sloan Wilson entitled, Does Altruism Exist? Culture, Genes, and the Welfare of Others. This book examines the origins of altruism from an evolutionary perspective, noting the altruistic behavior of social insects. Johnston concurs with Wilson that altruism does indeed exist, but differs with him as to its nature and causes. The article concludes with insights into altruism, selfishness, and love.

Stephanie Fenner

Parents Borrowing to Send Kids to College Skyrocketed Over the Last Two Decades.

This article confirms what North Star has been saying since it began: student loan debt isn’t just a young person’s problem. Student debt affects future and current students, parents, and even grandparents. MarketWatch found that borrowers with Parent PLUS loans jumped an astronomical 385 percent from the 1989-90 academic year to the 2011-12 academic year.

NSPA is Hiring – Research Director

North Star Policy Action (NSPA) seeks a Research Director to help build our research program and direct projects that lead to policy changes that improve the lives of everyday Minnesotans.   The Research Director will be responsible for building a research program,...

Failure is Not an Option

Despite Minnesota having $12.5 billion in one time money and a structural general fund surplus of $6 billion, there is no surplus in transportation funding. This report details decades of declining revenue from dedicated funding sources of transportation...

Underfunded Minnesota: Collective Investment for a Brighter Future

The current budget surplus represents an important opportunity to improve the quality and affordability of life for Minnesotans. For decades, wages have largely stagnated, while workers and families have incurred steeply rising costs for major expenses like childcare,...

Losing Ground: State Disinvestment in Students

Our first report, “Losing Ground”, has a simple but stark finding: over the last twenty years, per pupil state aid received by Minnesota school districts declined by 20 percent, after adjusting for inflation. As state aid has fallen off, school districts have asked...

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