University of Pittsburgh
February 17, 2008

William Pitt Debating Union to Host Public Debate Feb. 21 On Socially Responsible Investing

Contact:  412-624-4147

PITTSBURGH-The University of Pittsburgh's William Pitt Debating Union (WPDU) will host a public debate on the topic of whether investors should adopt guidelines for socially responsible investing, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Feb. 21, Room 343, Alumni Hall, 4227 Fifth Ave., Oakland.

The debate forum panelists are Michael Goodhart, associate professor of political science in Pitt's Department of Political Science in the School of Arts and Sciences, and Jay Sukits, assistant professor of business administration in Pitt's Joseph M. Katz Graduate School of Business and College of Business Administration.

Goodhart's research focuses on democracy and human rights, especially in the context of globalization. His current projects include papers on democratic accountability and supranational governance institutions, on the role of a transnational human rights regime in democratizing global power, and on the contractualist approaches to global justice. Goodhart also is working on a book-length project on global economic injustice and democratic governance.

Sukits' teaching and research interests are in capital market efficiency, corporate finance, securities valuation, and portfolio management. He spent 20 years as an investment banker, holding senior positions at E.F. Hutton & Co., Equilease Corp., Smith Barney, and PNC. Sukits has advised such corporations as Dupont, Sun Oil Co., U.S. Air, and PECO. He also has consulted with institutional investors, including Mellon Financial Corporation, Morgan Grenfell, and Providian Corp. on investment portfolios.

WPDU student debaters Paul Masters, Arts and Sciences sophomore, and Lissa Geiger, Arts and Sciences junior, will join Goodhart and Sukits on the stage to debate the question: "Should universities adopt the Duke guidelines for socially responsible investing?" Brett Powers, Arts and Sciences sophomore, will lead a panel of student questioners. Cate Morrison, WPDU assistant coach and a doctoral student in the communication department, will serve as moderator for the event.

The WPDU is involved in such debating activities as two-person intercollegiate policy debate, international parliamentary debate, and forms of public debate. One of the oldest organizations of its kind in the nation, WPDU is housed in the School of Arts and Sciences' Department of Communication.

This free public event is sponsored by Pitt's WPDU and Department of Communication. It may be viewed via delayed Web stream at (scroll to the bottom for "William Pitt Debating Union" events). For more information, contact Pitt communication professor Gordon Mitchell at 412-624-8531 or

Parking for the event will be available for $5 at Soldiers and Sailors Parking Garage, Fifth Avenue and Bigelow Boulevard, Oakland.