18:00 PM

Story Ideas for Media 2-19-08


When people feel powerful, they ignore new opinions, study finds.
Don't bother trying to persuade your boss of a new idea while he's feeling the power of his position - new research suggests he's not listening to you. Powerful people have confidence in what they are thinking. Whether their thoughts are positive or negative toward an idea, that position is going to be hard to change, said Richard Petty, co-author of the study and OSU professor of psychology. The best way to get leaders to consider new ideas is to put them in a situation where they don't feel as powerful, the research suggests. CONTACT: Richard Petty, (614) 292-1640. SEE: http://researchnews.osu.edu/archive/powerinf.htm


Politics and primaries – Ohio State election experts are online.
Ohio State University offers journalists the expertise of faculty and staff from one of the nation's leading public research universities. Experts are available to comment on topics including Ohio and national politics, presidential politics, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, the youth vote, campaign and election law, communication and voter perception, the economy and others. A complete directory is online: http://www.osu.edu/news/experts/election_experts.php


Former CENTCOM commander to speak at Ohio State – Feb. 20.
Gen. John P. Abizaid, former commander of the United States Central Command (CENTCOM), will present "Strategic Challenges in the Middle East" at 3:30 p.m. on Wednesday (2/20) at the Wexner Center Film/Video Theater, 1871 N. High St. His lecture will address the rise of Islamic extremism, Iran's development of nuclear power, the corrosive effects of the Arab-Israeli conflict, and the global reliance on oil.
CENTCOM directs the operations of 250,000 American troops in a 27-country region that includes the Horn of Africa, Arabian Peninsula, South and Central Asia, and the Middle East.
Abizaid succeeded Gen. Tommy Franks as commander of CENTCOM in July 2003, and was elevated to the rank of four-star general the same week. He was succeeded by Adm. William J. Fallon in March 2007. Abizaid retired in May 2007 after 34 years of service. He is currently a visiting fellow at the Hoover Institution at Stanford University.
The lecture is sponsored by the Mershon Center for International Security Studies, an Ohio State research center that advances the understanding of national security in a global context. Abizaid will also speak at Ohio Wesleyan University at 7:30 p.m. CONTACT: Cathy Becker, (614) 292-7529.

NASA brings 50th anniversary celebration to Columbus – Feb. 21. NASA is bringing it's 50th anniversary celebration to Columbus on Thursday (2/21), marking the agency's milestone with a series of events at COSI, 333 W. Broad Street. Ohio State researchers are among panelists who will discuss discovery, innovation and inspiration. Columbus is the second of ten cities hosting a NASA Future Forum, a year-long series celebrating NASA's 50th anniversary. COSI will offer special exhibits from NASA, including models of the rockets in the new Constellation program, interactive kiosks with images from the International Space Station, and a replica of the Mars Exploration Rover.
The NASA Columbus Future Forum focuses on how space exploration benefits Ohio's economy. NASA Deputy Administrator Shana Dale will deliver a keynote address at 8:45 a.m. and Governor Ted Strickland will deliver the luncheon address at 12:30 p.m.
Following the keynote address, at 9:15 a.m., astronaut Carl Walz, director of NASA's Advanced Capabilities Division, will provide an overview of NASA's exploration program. Other NASA participants include Woodrow Whitlow, director of NASA's Glenn Research Center, Cleveland, and John Hairston, director of external affairs at Glenn. Dale and others will participate in a media question and answer session at 9:55 a.m. CONTACT: Tabatha Thompson, NASA, (202) 358-3895. SEE: http://www.nasa.gov/50th/future_forums/

Ohio State to host national swimming events – Feb. 21-23. The Ohio State women's swimming and diving team will host the 2008 Women's Big Ten Swimming and Diving Championships February 21-23 at the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion, 1847 Neil Ave. It's the second time in three years that Ohio State has hosted the competition at the McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion, which is considered one of the finest competition pools and diving wells in the nation. The meet is the first of several national swimming events that will take place on campus. Ohio State will host the Women's NCAA Championships March 20-22. The 27th annual NCAA Division 1 championship, consisting of five different regional Zone Diving competitions, is also being hosted by Ohio State March 14-16. In addition, the university will host the Toyota Grand Prix on April 4-6, which features some of the best swimmers from around the country – including six-time gold medalist Michael Phelps. CONTACT: Kendra Lee, Athletics,