Jeanne & Dan Valente Center for Arts and Sciences

Welcome to the Jeanne and Dan Valente Center for Arts and Sciences at Bentley. The center’s mission is to help make the arts and sciences a vital, integral and challenging aspect of undergraduate and graduate education at Bentley. The center promotes research and teaching in the disciplines and at the intersection of arts, sciences and business. The center, through its programs, promotes individual scholarship while encouraging cross-disciplinary discussion and research.


Humanities Research SeminarRequest for Proposals

Spring 2014 Valente Center for Arts and Sciences Event Calendar.

Monday, April 7– Friday, April 11. Valente Visiting Scholar, Sigridur Ingibjörg Ingadóttir, Member of Parliament, Iceland. Bentley host, Joni Seager, Global Studies.

  • Wednesday, April 9, 3:35-4:50, La Cava 325 ABC. Public Lecture, “Lessons From Iceland About the Making and Unmaking of the Financial Crisis.”
  • Thursday, April 10, Thursday 12:45-2:00, Morison 300. Faculty Seminar, “Bringing Feminist Analysis to Understanding the Global Financial Crisis: Icelandic Perspectives.”   

The Jeanne and Dan Valente Center for the Arts & Sciences at Bentley University inviteed [deadline passed] faculty and graduate students to become participating fellows in the Center’s first annual Humanities Research Seminar.   The seminar will hold monthly meetings from September 2014 through April 2015 on Bentley’s campus in Waltham, Mass., with the goal of promoting publishable research.   Accepted fellows will be awarded a $3500 stipend for the 2014-15 academic year.  The Research Seminar is made possible by a Challenge Grant awarded to Bentley University by the National Endowment for the Humanities in November, 2011. 

The theme of the 2014-15 seminar, “Intended Consequences?  The Historical and Contemporary Problematic of Planning,” will address the logic and logistics of planning, broadly construed.   As a projection of particular forms of rationality into the future, planning is a defining characteristic of modernity.   All modern institutions plan—public and private, for profit and non-profit, capitalist and socialist, colonial and postcolonial.   From the smallest entities of civil society to large corporations and national governments, planning represents the intersection of utopian aspirations, data-driven forecasts, and the calculation of “known unknowns.”   The concept of planning thus allows us to approach data, policies, organizations, and theories in useful new ways.  

In recent years historians have explored planning in many contexts, especially from the 1930s through the 1980s when capitalist, fascist, socialist, colonial and postcolonial states sought to command economic, social, cultural, and political developments.  James Scott’s Seeing Like a State explores “high modernist” planning—Brazilia, collectivization in Tanzania, German tree monoculture—in comparative context.   One rich field of research is the cross-fertilization between long-term planning in the private sector and the “New Deals” and “five-year plans” of both capitalist and socialist modernizations.   Planning, however, both preceded and continued after the high modernist phase that Scott describes.   In the early 20th century, India’s indigenous bourgeoisie subverted colonial planning to project a new trajectory for India’s economy.   Moreover, despite rhetoric about the spontaneous organization of markets, recent work argues that the neat separation of organic growth from the intended consequences of planning is untenable. 

Bentley’s research seminar will be dedicated to research on planning by scholars in the humanities.   Because planning is an important process within many other disciplines, including urban studies, economics, organizational psychology, public administration, operations research, and management, the Valente Center welcomes scholars engaged in relevant research in disciplines outside the humanities to participate as non-stipended fellows.   

Those interested in participating in the seminar should send a current C.V., a brief description of how their current research could contribute to the seminar (no more than 500 words), and a proposal for a paper they would present during the seminar (no more than 250 words).   All materials should be submitted electronically by March 15, 2014 [Deadline passed], to jmcmahon@bentley.edu.   Applicants will be notified by April 1. 

 


 The international speakers who visit Bentley each year do more than bridge countries and cultures. They share direct knowledge of people and events that many of us have only read about, while also serving to inspire.  

Purposeful Platform - Select link to read of those who bridged, shared and inspired on campus this past fall.  All were sponsored by the Valente Center for Arts and Sciences.

 


Visiting Scholars

Dr. Kristin J. Anderson, Psychology, Fall 2013 
 

                          

Bjorn Machalett, Spring 2013, Natural Sciences                    

James Phelan, Spring 2013, English


                                         

Khedija Arfoui, Fall 2012, Modern Languages