Episodes Archive

High Price (REBROADCAST) #324

July 03, 2015

This week we're revisiting an episode about the science and policy of treating drug addiction. We're joined by psychology professor and researcher Carl Hart to talk about his book "High Price: A Neuroscientist's Journey of Self-Discovery That Challenges Everything You Know About Drugs and Society." And we'll speak to Donald MacPherson, Director of the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition, about harm reduction strategies to reduce the negative consequences of drug use. Read More

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Alzheimer's #323

June 26, 2015

This week we're learning more about Alzheimer's disease, from the perspective of a researcher and a patient. We'll discuss Alzheimer's and brain degeneration with Dr. Lili-Naz Hazrati, neurobiologist and researcher at the Tanz Centre for Research in Neurodegenerative Diseases at the University of Toronto. And we'll get a first hand account of living with the disease from journalist Greg O'Brien, author of "On Pluto: Inside the Mind of Alzheimer's." Read More

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Biohacking #322

June 19, 2015

This week we're talking about do-it-yourself biology, and the community labs that are changing the biotech landscape from the grassroots up. We'll discuss open-source genetics and biohacking spaces with Will Canine of Brooklyn lab Genspace, and Tito Jankowski, co-founder of Silicon Valley's BioCurious. And we'll talk to transdisciplinary artist and educator Heather Dewey-Hagborg about her art projects exploring our relationship with genetics and privacy. Read More

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Galileo's Middle Finger #321

June 12, 2015

This week, we're talking about justice, truth and social activism, and how they influence scientists and their research. We'll spend the hour with Alice Dreger, professor of clinical medical humanities and bioethics at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine. We'll discuss her experience as a scientist and activist, and her book "Galileo's Middle Finger: Heretics, Activists, and the Search for Justice in Science."  Read More

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Dataclysm #320

June 05, 2015

This week we're looking at how powerful computers and massive data sets are changing the we study each other, scientifically and socially. We're joined by machine learning researcher Hanna Wallach, to talk about the definition of "big data," and social science research techniques that use data about individual people to model patterns in human behavior. And we'll speak to Christian Rudder, co-founder of OkCupid and author of the OkTrends blog, about his book "Dataclysm: Who We Are (When We Think No One's Looking)." Read More

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A Special Hell #319

May 29, 2015

This week we're talking about the use - and appalling misuse - of genetics in pursuit of human perfection. We'll speak to Claudia Malacrida, sociology professor and eugenics researcher, about her book "A Special Hell: Institutional Life in Alberta's Eugenic Years." And we'll talk to Hannah Brown, postdoctoral researcher at the University of Adelaide, about the ethical issues raised by the creation of a genetically modified human embryo. Read More

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Come As You Are #318

May 22, 2015

This week we're looking at the intersection of human sexuality, research and education. We're joined by sexuality educator and blogger Emily Nagoski, to talk about her book "Come as You Are: The Surprising New Science that Will Transform Your Sex Life." And we'll speak to medical humanities and bioethics professor Alice Dreger, about her experience live-tweeting her son's abstinence-focused sex-ed class. Read More

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Secure Communications #317

May 15, 2015

This week, we're looking at technology for keeping secrets safe from prying eyes and ears. We're joined by Dan Younger, professor emeritus of mathematics at the University of Waterloo, to discuss the remarkable work of his colleague Bill Tutte, who broke the German Lorenz Code during World War II And we'll discuss the cutting edge of quantum security with Physics and Computer Science Professor Shohini Ghose. Read More

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Sports Science #316

May 08, 2015

This week we're exploring the ways that science and technology are changing sports, on and off the playing field. We'll speak to journalist Mark McClusky about his book "Faster, Higher, Stronger: How Sports Science Is Creating a New Generation of Superathletes – and What We Can Learn from Them." And we'll get the scientific perspective on sports supplements with Dr. Bryan Chung, founder of Evidence Based Fitness. Read More

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Pests in the City #315

May 01, 2015

This week, we're exploring the ways human-made environments support - and shape - the lives of many species we think of as vermin. We'll talk to Geography and Environmental Studies Professor Dawn Day Biehler about her book "Pests in the City: Flies, Bedbugs, Cockroaches, and Rats." And we'll speak to postdoctoral researcher Clint Penick about his research on the junk food diets of urban ants. Read More

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Severed #314

April 24, 2015

This week we're looking at our scientific curiosity - and morbid fascination - about the human body and its amazing anatomy. We'll speak to anthropologist and author Frances Larson about her book "Severed: A History of Heads Lost and Heads Found." And we'll discuss the experience of learning anatomy through human dissection, with Laboratory Supervisor Haley Linklater, and masters student Noah Mintz, from the Department of Anatomy and Cell Biology at Western University. Read More

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Heavy Metal Birds #313

April 17, 2015

This week we're learning about the impact that the byproducts of our industrial societies have on avian populations. We'll speak to filmmaker Matthew Podolsky about his documentary "Scavenger Hunt," that looks at the effects of lead on the California Condor. And we'll talk to conservation scientist Alexander Bond about his research on mercury poisoning in the endangered Arctic Ivory Gull. Read More

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Impossible Space #312

April 10, 2015

This week we're exploring the limits of science exploration in both fictional and fact. We're joined by "lifelong space nerd" Andy Weir, to talk about his debut novel "The Martian," that pits human inventiveness and ingenuity against the unforgiving environment of the red planet. And astrophysicist and science blogger Ethan Siegel returns to explore so-called "impossible space engines," and what news stories about them can teach us about journalism and science literacy. Read More

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On Intelligence #311

April 03, 2015

This week we're learning about how scientists and society measure intelligence, and the relationship between smartness and success. We're joined by cognitive psychologist Scott Barry Kaufman, to talk about his book "Ungifted: Intelligence Redefined." And we'll talk to Nathaniel Barr, postdoctoral fellow at the University of Waterloo, about research into the relationship between smartphone use and cognitive skills. Read More

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Circumcision #310

March 27, 2015

This week we’re looking at the contentious medical and ethical history of circumcision. We're joined by Sarah B. Rodriguez, medical historian and lecturer in global health and bioethics at Northwestern University, to talk about about her book “Female Circumcision and Clitoridectomy in the United States: A History of a Medical Treatment." And we'll discuss the medical and ethical implications of infant male circumcision with Brian Earp, University of Oxford Research Fellow in Science and Ethics. Read More

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Celebrity and Science #309

March 20, 2015

This week we're looking at how famous personalities influence public opinion about science and pseudoscience. Health law professor Timothy Caulfield returns to talk about his new book "Is Gwyneth Paltrow Wrong About Everything?: When Celebrity Culture and Science Clash." And we'll speak to Conservation and Development professor Daniel Brockington about his research on celebrities and charitable advocacy. Read More

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Women in STEM #308

March 13, 2015

This week, we're celebrating Women in Science by looking at the victories and challenges of women working in science and tech. Join us for a panel discussion with postdoctoral research associate and science communicator Raychelle "Dr. Rubidium" Burks, Colgate University Professor of Psychology Jessica Cundiff, Ph.D., Physics Professor Dr. Shohini Ghose, Director of the Wilfrid Laurier University Centre for Women in Science, and Catherine Hill, Ph.D, vice president for research at the American Association of University Women. And we'll speak to Brianna Wu, Head of Development at videogame company Giant Spacekat, about feminism, gaming industry culture, and her experience as an outspoken critic of #GamerGate. Read More

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Pavlov #307

March 06, 2015

This week, we're learning about the life and work of a groundbreaking physiologist whose work on learning and instinct is familiar worldwide, and almost universally misunderstood. We'll spend the hour with Daniel Todes, Ph.D, Professor of History of Medicine at The Johns Hopkins University, discussing his book "Ivan Pavlov: A Russian Life in Science."  Read More

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Superstorm #306

February 27, 2015

This week, we're exploring the evolving frontier of extreme weather, and how it's influenced by our warming planet. We'll talk about the largest Atlantic storm system ever recorded with writer Kathryn Miles, author of "Superstorm: Nine Days Inside Hurricane Sandy." And we'll talk about the relationship between climate change and hurricane strength and frequency with Christopher Landsea, Ph.D, Science and Operations Officer at NOAA’s National Hurricane Center. Read More

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Struck By Genius #305

February 20, 2015

This week we're looking at brain injuries, and the ways they change the lives of patients. We'll talk to Jason Padgett and Maureen Seaberg, authors of "Struck by Genius: How a Brain Injury Made Me a Mathematical Marvel." And we'll speak to neuroscientist Dr. Adrian Owen about his brain imaging research detecting awareness in vegetative patients. Note: The article Accidental Genius by Darold A. Treffert can be found on page 52 of the August 2014 issue of Scientific American. Read More

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