Posting volume has been light as of late due to standard end-of-semester craziness combined with preparations for the SOM Philanthropy Conference, which thankfully went off without a hitch last Friday. I’m now done with two of my classes, however, and should be able to publish more frequently this coming week. The only one of these classes that I haven’t mentioned yet on the blog is Negotiation, which replaced Behavioral Economics and Strategy at the mid-semester point in October (all of my other classes were full-semester affairs). Negotiation was a well-designed class for which I undertook several real-world exercises for practice–including a rather spectacular flame-out on my part at the UPS Store–although I couldn’t help feeling unsettled by how easy it was to fall into hardball tactics by the end of several weeks together.

With that, a few notes from around the web on this Saturday afternoon:

  • Obama arts policy committee member Isaac Butler, bless his heart, is doing a “close read” of the latest publication from RAND, State Arts Policy: Trends and Future Prospects (pdf). This is such an incredibly nerdy idea I can’t help but embrace it wholeheartedly. I hope to respond more fully later this week, but in the meantime here are parts one and two of his exegesis (he’s up to page 9).
  • The Chronicle of Philanthropy had an interesting chat the other week about mergers in the nonprofit sector.
  • Robert Levine wonders if conductors make too much. While the obvious answer would seem to be “duh,” Levine defends the San Francisco Symphony by pointing out that MTT makes a lot less than some members of the San Francisco Giants. Umm…okay? I’m particularly disturbed though by Levine’s apparent belief that there are no good conductors out there besides the big names. Then why the hell are we graduating all these people from conducting schools? Considering that not even all of the high-profile conductors are considered that great, I can’t believe that there aren’t some gems in the rough out there (maybe even some non-white-males? what a concept!) who wouldn’t do as least as good a job.