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Thursday, November 15, 2018
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Louisiana Public Square
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Panelist Bio


Nihal Shrinath
The Data Center

Nihal Shrinath is Data Manager and Research Associate for the Data Center. The Data Center collects data on disaster recovery, regional economic analysis, workforce development, racial disparity indicators, blight reduction, affordable housing, and coastal population movements for Southeast Louisiana.

Nihal leads the Data Center’s research on the development of the water management cluster in Southeast Louisiana as published in The Coastal Index series. Nihal is an economic scholar with an acute passion for demographic and geographic trends as well as issues of urban revitalization and environmental sustainability. He also provides research and analysis, for The Data Center’s many information products.

Nihal came to The Data Center in 2014 from Resource Environmental Solutions (RES), a wetlands mitigation provider where he directed data analysis and land mapping for the Emerging Markets team in addition to overseeing the regulatory approval of environmental restoration plans. At RES, he used federal databases and Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests to analyze mitigation demand and he used publically available environmental datasets to identify environmentally fragile wetlands and streams. He also developed integrated systems for land search, sales prospecting, and expansion.

Before RES, Nihal worked as a developer and integration specialist at a Health IT start-up in New Orleans. He originally came to New Orleans as part of the Venture for America fellowship, a program designed to place young graduates in start-ups in America’s economically transitioning cities. Nihal holds dual Bachelor of Arts degrees in Political Science and Computer Science from Amherst College, and hails from Boston, Massachusetts.

Current Topic


     11/18 - An Eye on Admissions

What standards should be used for college admissions?
This fall, LSU instituted a “holistic admissions” process for incoming students which relies more on essays and recommendations than on College Board test scores and grade point averages. Proponents of the move say it’s a better way to identify strong students while opening up opportunities for families not financially able to afford prep classes for standardized exams. Opponents say the move will increase student attrition and could endanger LSU’s flagship status. Examine the new standards from several different perspectives.

Louisiana Public Square looks for answers to these questions and more on “An Eye on Admissions” Wednesday, November 21 at 7pm on LPB and in New Orleans on WLAE.

Louisiana Public Square can also be heard on public radio stations WRKF in Baton Rouge; Red River Radio in Shreveport and Alexandria; and WWNO in New Orleans. Check their station websites for schedule.
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Special Presentation


     10/18 - Louisiana Veterans Back Home

What are the programs and initiatives helping our veterans successfully transition to civilian life?

Special Presentation


     05/16 - Louisiana Veterans Coming Home

What challenges do our returning veterans face?

Coming Soon!


     12/18 - News About the News (Encore)

How can viewers distinguish between fact and fake news and is social media blurring the difference?

Recent Topics


     10/18 - Louisiana Veterans Back Home

What are the programs and initiatives helping our veterans successfully transition to civilian life?

     09/18 - Revisiting Reform

Are the criminal justice reforms working as intended?

     08/18 - The Power of Reading

How can we make inroads to improve adult literacy in Louisiana and champion a joy of reading from pre-school into adulthood?

     07/18 - Preventing Suicide

How is Louisiana addressing its suicide problem?
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