2007-2008 Committee:

Editor-in-Chief Andrew McLennan
Publisher Susan Harris-Huemmert
Treasurer Natalie Lundsteen
Typesetter Andrew McLennan
Cover Design Hana Ross
Editors Laurence Carroll,
Lisa Herzog,
Paul Honey,
Michael Levy,
Yvonne Malan,
Philipp Reuss,
Dominique Van De Sompel


SCR Advisory Board:

Professor Martin Ceadel Fellow and Tutor in Politics
Dr Karen Croxson Junior Research Fellow in Economics
Dr Victor Flynn Fellow and Tutor in Mathematics
Dr Elizabeth Frazer Fellow and Tutor in Politics
Professor David Gavaghan Fellow in Mathematics
Professor Catriona Kelly Fellow and Tutor in Russian
David Palfreyman College Bursar and Director of the Oxford Centre for Higher Education Policy
Professor George Ratcliffe Fellow and Tutor in Biochemistry
Dr Alan Renwick Junior Research Fellow in Politics


Articles:

George Wellen A Mathematical Approach to Rubik’s Cube
Natalie Lundsteen Internships, Employability and the Knowledge Economy
Evgenia Ivanova The Representation of Gender in the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus
Magdy Fawzy Saudi Foreign Policy: a ceaseless quest for security?
Darya Protopopova Dostoevsky, Chekhov, and the Ballets Russes: Images of Savagery and Spirituality in the British Response to Russian Culture, 1911-1929
Karl Thorley Toward Near-Infrared Dyes for Laser Protection and Ultra-Fast Telecommunication Signal Modulation
Lisa Herzog When incentives don’t work – the debate about “motivation crowding out”
Yvonne Malan Amnesty and the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission
Andrew McLennan & Laurence Carroll The Chemistry & Engineering of Cancer Detection using Positron Emission Tomography



A Mathematical Approach to Rubik’s Cube
George Wellen

Rubik’s cube is a notoriously difficult puzzle. There are many ways of solving the cube and there are many websites detailing them. It is possible to follow such a method and thereby solve the puzzle without having any idea why the method works or how it was invented. In this short paper I explain how I personally set about solving the cube.

Internships, Employability and the Knowledge Economy
Natalie Lundsteen

Internships are gaining popularity with students in the UK. But is it true that they help students gain the skills needed to be employable in the “knowledge economy”?

The Representation of Gender in the Constitution of the Republic of Belarus
Evgenia Ivanova

Reality is not absolutely independent. It is dependent, for instance, on language. Linguistic representations of “reality” provide us with certain points of view on the world and in the final analysis with the world as we know it. This paper explores how socio-legal order in contemporary Belarus is gendered by focusing on the linguistic representations in the supreme law of the country. The analysis demonstrates that despite the idea of gender neutrality and generality of legal norms the actor in the reality of the Constitution is rather male whereas women are either underrepresented or presented only in certain contexts.

Saudi Foreign Policy: a ceaseless quest for security?
Magdy Fawzy

Saudi foreign policy has often been described as a ceaseless quest for security. However, Saudi security concerns are not merely related to physical and external threats, but rather to ideological and internal claims on the regime. This essay will analyse Saudi foreign policy, and most importantly its security element, both regionally and globally, and relate it to the context of the state’s foundation.

Dostoevsky, Chekhov, and the Ballets Russes: Images of Savagery and Spirituality in the British Response to Russian Culture, 1911-1929
Darya Protopopova

This article examines the reception of Russian art and literature in Britain in the context of modernists’ revolt against Victorianism and their search for new expressiveness. In particular, it deals with Roger Fry’s attraction to Oriental motifs of the Russian Ballet and icon painting and his praise of primitive elements in works of the Russian artists who contributed to the ’Second Post-Impressionist Exhibition’ in 1912. Fry’s interest in Russian visual art provides a revealing parallel to the modernists’ search for new methods of artistic expression in Russian literature, particularly in the works of Dostoevsky and Chekhov.

Toward Near-Infrared Dyes for Laser Protection and Ultra-Fast Telecommunication Signal Modulation
Karl Thorley

The aim of my DPhil project is to design and synthesize new porphyrin based organic dyes with strong near IR absorption. This is important in relation to the general lack of near IR absorbing dyes, but also that the new dyes should show strong nonlinearities in the near IR region, leading to application as optical limiters in this region. Telecommunication signals in optical fibres have wavelengths in the near IR between 1000 and 1500 nm. In addition to protecting sensors, optical limiting could be used to manipulate these types of optical signals, leading to ultrafast high bandwidth communication.

When incentives don’t work – the debate about “motivation crowding out”
Lisa Herzog

This article explores the phenomenon of “motivation crowding out”: higher incentives leading to lower offers, contrary to standard microeconomic theory. Two economic explanations for this phenomenon are presented. The model by B`enabou and Tirole explains it by appeal to information asymmetries between principal and agent; incentives are read as cues about what the principal thinks about the situation. The model by Sliwka refers to conformist behavior: the agents take incentives to be informative about social norms. The topic of motivation crowding out illustrates the challenge posed to microeconomics by behavioral economic research and the attempts to accommodate such findings within the framework of traditional microeconomics.

Amnesty and the South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission
Yvonne Malan

The South African Truth and Reconciliation Commission is widely cited as a model for truth commissions. One of the features of the Commission was amnesty, for which perpetrators of gross human rights violations had to apply for individually. This development is praised as an improved approach to a highly problematic notion. This article examines whether the South African approach to amnesty was really that successful.

The Chemistry & Engineering of Cancer Detection using Positron Emission Tomography
Andrew McLennan & Laurence Carroll

The Positron Emission Tomography (PET) is a functional nuclear medicine imaging technique for viewing a patient’s biochemical processes in-vivo. The focus of this article is twofold: to understand the chemistry required to synthesise hypoxic selective PET tracers; and the mathematical methods required to detect, diagnose and quantitatively assess cancer growth.