October 15, 2010

Good Morning:

Tulane is one of only 63 members of the Association of American Universities (AAU), a group comprised of the leading major research universities in North America. Tulane has been an AAU member since being selected in 1958 and remains the only university in Louisiana, Alabama, Arkansas or Mississippi to be part of this prestigious organization.

AAU membership is based, in part, on the amount of a university's externally funded research, and the quality and size of its doctoral programs. Unfortunately, Katrina forced us to reduce the number of our doctoral programs to save money at a time when our survival was at stake. However, as we have recovered, we have begun a process to add new doctoral programs in areas that build on existing strengths and help further differentiate the university. Last year we added three new programs in aging studies, linguistics and French studies as a result of recommendations from the Graduate Council.

This year we have added two new interdisciplinary PhD programs in the areas of "City, Culture and Community" and "Economic Analysis and Policy." Both programs will begin to accept students in fall 2011. "City, Culture and Community" will include faculty from the School of Social Work, the School of Liberal Arts, the School of Architecture, the School of Law, the School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and the School of Science and Engineering who will lead students in an examination of the social, economic and political institutions and processes that shape urban areas.

Unlike traditional PhD programs in economics, in which all courses are centered in one department, the "Economic Analysis and Policy Program" will provide students with a strong foundation in the tools of economic analysis and then require the completion of coursework in one of four interdisciplinary fields: economics, finance and policy; inequality and poverty; health and human capital; and environmental economics and policy. With funding for research at Tulane at an all-time high, I have no doubt that these two new PhD programs, along with others we have added recently, will greatly enhance our standing as a highly productive, highly regarded and highly sought after research-intensive university.

Have a great weekend,


Office of the President Emeritus, 1555 Poydras St, Suite 700, New Orleans, LA 70112 504-274-3638