The Wellesley LWV Opening Meeting will be held on Thursday, September 28, 2017 from 6:30-9 pm at the Wellesley Community Center (Henderson Room).
Our featured speaker will be Mira Bernstein; her talk, "Gerrymandering: Why It's More Complicated Than Most People Think" will help us learn about efforts to improve fairness in the election process. Mira holds a research faculty position in the interdisciplinary program Science, Technology and Society at Tufts University where she is a founding member of the Metric Geometry and Gerrymandering Group (MGGG), which believes that gerrymandering is a fundamental threat to our democracy. Mira studied mathematics at Yale and was a Churchill Scholar at Cambridge, after which she received her doctorate from Harvard in algebraic gometry. She coordinated a research team from Harvard, MIT, the National Bureau of Economic Research and Portland, Oregon to assess the effects of extending health insurance to a low-income uninsured population, during which time she developed novel sampling framework and statistical weighting procedures. She was also the director of a summer program for mathematically-talented high school students for over 15 years.
With the Supreme Court preparing to hear oral arguments on October 3 in Gill v. Whitford, a challenge to the redistricting plan passed by Wisconsin's legislature in 2011, this talk is an extremely relevant look at how voting is affected by gerrymandering. For more information about this important case, which Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg has called perhaps the most important of the upcoming term, click here.
The New Yorker also had an interesting recent piece about a new MGGG summer symposium at Tufts aimed at bringing together people with expertise in the legal, historical, civil rights, and mathematical aspects of redistricting.
Light refreshments will be served at 6:30 and the lecture will begin promptly at 7. All members and Wellesley residents are invited to attend. Please see flyer here