Podcast

Science for the People

Science for the People is a long-format interview podcast that explores the connections between science, popular culture, history, and public policy, to help listeners understand the evidence and arguments behind what's in the news and on the shelves. Our hosts sit down with science researchers, writers, authors, journalists, and experts to discuss science from the past, the science that affects our lives today, and how science might change our future.

Episodes

  • #565 The Great Wide Indoors

    Jun 28 2020

    We're all spending a bit more time indoors this summer than we probably figured. But did you ever stop to think about why the places we live and work as designed the way they are? And how they could be designed better? We're talking with Emily Anthes about her new book "The Great Indoors: The Surprising Science of how Buildings Shape our Behavior, Health and Happiness".

  • #564 Frances Glessner Lee and the Nutshell Studies

    Jun 21 2020

    Around the end of the second world war, a set of tiny miniature dioramas depicting a variety of deaths were created to help teach investigators how to approach a crime scene. You may have heard of the Nutshell Studies of Unexplained Death and their maker, Frances Glessner Lee... but you probably didn't know how Lee became interested in forensics, that she used her inheritance to establish a department of legal medicine at Harvard Medical School to accellerate the field, or that she used her poli...more

  • #563 Dissecting Bumble Bee Health

    Jun 14 2020

    Yes, bumble bees are important pollinators. But they're also fascinating, cute and colorful. This week's episode can trace its origins to a flowery Sierra Nevada meadow where host Carolyn Wilke reported on guest Michelle Duennes' project of catching bumble bees to study their health. Three years and hundreds of bees later, we check in on the project. Hear all about the adventures of working with bumble bees, from flash freezing bees in the field to baking pollen cookies for lab colonies. We also...more

  • #BLM Black Lives Matter

    Jun 07 2020

    We're taking a step back from our scheduled episode this week to ensure the important discussions around Black Lives Matter continue to stay in focus. Black voices are leading conversations about deep-rooted racism they have experienced and witnessed. These conversations aren't hard to find. We've included a few resources below to get you started if you aren't sure where or how to get started, but don't let these be the only things you engage with. General Black Lives Matter website Ways You Can...more

  • #562 Superbug to Bedside

    May 24 2020

    By now we're all good and scared about antibiotic resistance, one of the many things coming to get us all. But there's good news, sort of. News antibiotics are coming out! How do they get tested? What does that kind of a trial look like and how does it happen? Host Bethany Brookeshire talks with Matt McCarthy, author of "Superbugs: The Race to Stop an Epidemic", about the ins and outs of testing a new antibiotic in the hospital.

  • #561 The Race to Identify All Living Things

    May 17 2020

    This week on Science for the People, we're diving into the world of DNA barcoding. We speak with Mehrdad Hajibabaei, Associate Professor in the Department of Integrative Biology and the Centre for Biodiversity Genomics at the University of Guelph, about the International Barcode of Life. And we discuss how you can contribute to the field of DNA barcoding with Sujeevan Ratnasingham, Associate Director of Informatics and Adjunct Professor at the Centre for Biodiversity Genomics at t...more

  • #560 That's the Yeast of your Worries

    May 10 2020

    Like many people these days, you might be spending your time at home making bread. Maybe you couldn't find instant yeast and decided that sourdough didn't sound that hard. But the colony of wild yeast you've nurtured is more marvelous than you probably expect. Today host Marion Kilgour discusses a small corner of the wonderful world of yeast with Sudeep Agarwala from Ginkgo Bioworks. Related links: A Twitter thread on sourdough advice from Sudeep Agarwala A Twitter thread on lentil-based sourdo...more

  • #559 Notes From a Transplant Surgeon

    Apr 26 2020

    One of the most amazing things modern medicine does is organ transplants: literally taking organs like the lungs or the heart from recently dead people and using them to replace the failing organs in living, critically ill people, giving them a second shot at living a fuller life. How and when did we first figure out how to do this? What does a modern transplant look like? And what is it like to be the doctor who takes from death to give life? This week host Rachelle Saunders talks with Dr Joshu...more

  • #558 Good Drugs, Bad Companies

    Apr 19 2020

    Medicines. We all need to take them. And it seems like the prices are just getting higher and higher. Luckily, generics offer a cheaper alternative. And we are told that they are both the same drug and do the same thing, we assume in the same way. But it turns out that's not really quite true. This week, we're talking with Katherine Eban about her book "Bottle of Lies: The Inside Story of the Generic Drug Boom". Related links: After a scandal, a one-sided warning against generic drugs by Jeremy ...more

  • #557 Homeschool STEM Resource Extravaganza

    Apr 12 2020

    With many schools closed and parents looking for resources to help keep children stuck at home engaged and still learning, the hosts of Science for the People stuck on our curation caps and did some digging to create a list of STEM themed online resources for students of all ages and interests. This week we take a break from our usual format so that hosts Bethany Brookshire and Rachelle Saunders can showcase these great resources and hopefully help you find a few that your at-home student is kee...more

  • #556 The Power of Friendship

    Mar 29 2020

    It's 2020 and times are tough. Maybe some of us are learning about social distancing the hard way. Maybe we just are all a little anxious. No matter what, we could probably use a friend. But what is a friend, exactly? And why do we need them so much? This week host Bethany Brookshire speaks with Lydia Denworth, author of the new book "Friendship: The Evolution, Biology, and Extraordinary Power of Life's Fundamental Bond". This episode is hosted by Bethany Brookshire, science writer from Sc...more

  • #555 Coronavirus

    Mar 22 2020

    It's everywhere, and it felt disingenuous for us here at Science for the People to avoid it, so here is our episode on Coronavirus. It's ok to give this one a skip if this isn't what you want to listen to right now. Check out the links below for other great podcasts mentioned in the intro. Host Rachelle Saunders gets us up to date on what the Coronavirus is, how it spreads, and what we know and don't know with Dr Jason Kindrachuk, Assistant Professor in the Department of Medical Microbiology and...more

  • #554 Coders

    Mar 15 2020

    Tech, computers, code, security vulnerabilities, hacking elections... We hear about the technical change, but what about the subculture of tech and coders that brought it about? Who are these people who -- in the words of our guest today - "are among the most quietly influential people on the planet"? Rachelle Saunders digs into this topic with writer Clive Thompson, author of the new book "Coders: The Making of a New Tribe and the Remaking of the World".

  • #553 Scan All Fishes

    Mar 08 2020

    This week is all about fish. All about ALL the fish, actually. Biomechanicist Adam Summers shares about his adventures in studying fish and CT scanning them. Adam and a community of researchers are working to take 3D scans of all known fish on Earth: some 34,000 species and counting. New host Carolyn Wilke and Adam discuss the project, the diversity of fish — fish that fight, float upstream, cling to rocks and more - and advising animators on the films Finding Nemo and Finding Dory.

  • #552 The First Cell

    Feb 23 2020

    This week we take a closer look at what cancer is, how it works, and what makes it so hard to treat without shying away or ignoring the human experience of cancer for patients and their families. We talk with Dr Azra Raza, oncologist, Professor of Medicine, Director of the MDS Center at Columbia University, and author of the new book "The First Cell and the Human Costs of Pursuing Cancer to the Last".

  • #551 Translating Science, Part 2

    Feb 16 2020

    This week on Science for the People, we're discussing how Siksika become one of the official translation languages for press releases from the Laser Interferometer Gravitational-Wave Observatory (LIGO). The area of the world that is now known as Canada has an abundance of distinct languages; according to the 2016 Census, over 70 are still spoken. But the British government, and then the Canadian government, spent generations trying to prevent children from learning these languages. One of the la...more

  • #550 Translating Science, Part 1

    Feb 09 2020

    This week, we're discussing the opportunities and challenges of using Zulu, a language that has traditionally been excluded from science journalism, to share discoveries with a new audience. Host Marion Kilgour speaks with Sibusiso Biyela, science communicator at ScienceLink and a contributor at South African science news website SciBraai. Related links: Decolonizing Science Writing in South Africa on The Open Notebook by Sibusiso Biyela

  • #549 Let's Get Slimy

    Feb 02 2020

    Algae. What springs to mind when you read that word? Maybe a seaweed forest? Maybe a pond covered in scum? Maybe a red tide? Those are all algae, and they can all change the world in different ways. This week Bethany Brookshire talks with Ruth Kassinger about the history, present and future of algae and her new book, "Slime: How Algae Created Us, Plague Us, and Just Might Save Us". This episode is hosted by Bethany Brookshire, science writer from Science News.

  • #548 Land and Ocean Conservation 101

    Jan 19 2020

    This week we're talking about land and ocean conservation: what it means to protect our land and oceans, the complexities of competing interests and international boundries, and how well Canada is doing at conserving its most important wild areas. Helping us wrap our heads around it are National Parks Program Director Alison Ronson and National Oceans Program Director Candace Newman from the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS). This episode is hosted by Rachelle Saunders. Related links...more

  • #547 The D Factor: The Dark Side of Your Personality

    Jan 12 2020

    This week on Science for the People, we're discussing dark personality traits. Everyone has them, and how they manifest themselves depends on your "D" level. We'll be speaking with Ingo Zettler, a Professor of Psychology at the University of Copenhagen and a member of the team of researchers who put forward the theory of the common core of dark personality traits, about what the "D" factor is and what influences your "D" level. This episode is hosted by Anika Hazra. Related links: The dark core ...more

  • #546 2019, But Make It Science

    Jan 04 2020

    It's 2020, but we're looking back. What were the biggest science stories of 2019? Well, it was a big year for lots of things. Black hole pictures, vaping illnesses... and lots and lots of climate change news. Come on a trip down memory lane with us and the writers at Science News magazine as we take a look back at some of the top science stories of the last year. Related links: Most Americans now see signs of climate change where they live Countries urgently need to ramp up emissions cuts to mee...more

  • #545 Where Have All the Antibiotics Gone?

    Dec 21 2019

    Antibiotics. You know the drill. You get a bacterial infection, you get an antibiotic, and a few days or a week later, you're all better. But these days, that idyll is under threat as bacteria evolve to work around our drugs. So... where are the new, better antibiotics? Well, it's time to follow the money. We speak with David Shlaes about how the antibiotic drug pipeline works and why it's drying up. And we'll speak with Maryn McKenna about what happens when one antibiotic drug's price goes thro...more

  • #544 Prosperity Without Growth

    Dec 14 2019

    The societies we live in are organised around growth, objects, and driving forward a constantly expanding economy as benchmarks of success and prosperity. But this growing consumption at all costs is at odds with our understanding of what our planet can support. How do we lower the environmental impact of economic activity? How do we redefine success and prosperity separate from GDP, which politicians and governments have focused on for decades? We speak with ecological economist Tim Jackson, Pr...more

  • #543 Give a Nerd a Gift

    Dec 07 2019

    Yup, you guessed it... it's Science for the People's annual holiday episode that helps you figure out what sciency books and gifts to get that special nerd on your list. Or maybe you're looking to build up your reading list for the holiday break and a geeky Christmas sweater to wear to an upcoming party. Returning are pop-science power-readers John Dupuis and Joanne Manaster to dish on the best science books they read this past year. And Rachelle Saunders and Bethany Brookshire squee in delight ...more

  • #542 Climate Doomsday

    Nov 30 2019

    Have you heard? Climate change. We did it. And it's bad. It's going to be worse. We are already suffering the effects of it in many ways. How should we TALK about the dangers we are facing, though? Should we get people good and scared? Or give them hope? Or both? Host Bethany Brookshire talks with David Wallace-Wells and Sheril Kirschenbaum to find out. This episode is hosted by Bethany Brookshire, science writer from Science News. Related links: Why Climate Disasters Might Not Boost Public Enga...more

  • #541 Wayfinding

    Nov 16 2019

    These days when we want to know where we are or how to get where we want to go, most of us will pull out a smart phone with a built-in GPS and map app. Some of us old timers might still use an old school paper map from time to time. But we didn't always used to lean so heavily on maps and technology, and in some remote places of the world some people still navigate and wayfind their way without the aid of these tools... and in some cases do better without them. This week, host Rachelle Saunders....more

  • #540 Specialize? Or Generalize?

    Nov 09 2019

    Ever been called a "jack of all trades, master of none"? The world loves to elevate specialists, people who drill deep into a single topic. Those people are great. But there's a place for generalists too, argues David Epstein. Jacks of all trades are often more successful than specialists. And he's got science to back it up. We talk with Epstein about his latest book, "Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World".

  • #539 A Bit of Bird Behaviour

    Oct 26 2019

    This week we're discussing birds, behaviour, and chickadees. How do you look at behavioural traits in birds, how different birds value information gathering, and how those traits affect foraging? Marion Kilgour speaks to Dr. Kim Mathot, the Canada Research Chair in Integrative Ecology, about how and why birds make decisions, and how individuals value and act on information, how they share information within groups, and what value that information has in managing uncertainty. Chickadees calls re...more

  • #538 Nobels and Astrophysics

    Oct 19 2019

    This week we start with this year's physics Nobel Prize awarded to Jim Peebles, Michel Mayor, and Didier Queloz and finish with a discussion of the Nobel Prizes as a way to award and highlight important science. Are they still relevant? When science breakthroughs are built on the backs of hundreds -- and sometimes thousands -- of people's hard work, how do you pick just three to highlight? Join host Rachelle Saunders and astrophysicist, author, and science communicator Ethan Siegel for their cha...more

  • #537 Science Journalism, Hold the Hype

    Oct 11 2019

    Everyone's seen a piece of science getting over-exaggerated in the media. Most people would be quick to blame journalists and big media for getting in wrong. In many cases, you'd be right. But there's other sources of hype in science journalism. and one of them can be found in the humble, and little-known press release. We're talking with Chris Chambers about doing science about science journalism, and where the hype creeps in. Related links: The association between exaggeration in health relate...more

  • #536 Let Them Eat Dirt

    Sep 27 2019

    This week on Science for the People, we're discussing how the gut microbiome is shaped by experiences and circumstances during early childhood. We'll be speaking with Dr. Bretty Finlay, co-author of "Let Them Eat Dirt: Saving Your Child from an Oversanitized World", about everything from C-sections to widespread antibiotic resistance to using probiotics to treat diseases. Things are about to get messy! Related links: Clinical Guide to Probiotic Products Available in Canada This episod...more

  • #535 Superior

    Sep 20 2019

    Apologies for the delay getting this week's episode out! A technical glitch slowed us down, but all is once again well. This week, we look at the often troubling intertwining of science and race: its long history, its ability to persist even during periods of disrepute, and the current forms it takes as it resurfaces, leveraging the internet and nationalism to buoy itself. We speak with Angela Saini, independent journalist and author of the new book "Superior: The Return of Race Science", about...more

  • #534 Bacteria are Coming for Your OJ

    Sep 13 2019

    What makes breakfast, breakfast? Well, according to every movie and TV show we've ever seen, a big glass of orange juice is basically required. But our morning grapefruit might be in danger. Why? Citrus greening, a bacteria carried by a bug, has infected 90% of the citrus groves in Florida. It's coming for your OJ. We'll talk with University of Maryland plant virologist Anne Simon about ways to stop the citrus killer, and with science writer and journalist Maryn McKenna about why throwing antibi...more

  • #533 Breaking the Rodent Glass Ceiling

    Aug 31 2019

    When a new science finding is published about animal research, you might assume that scientists are trying to find out things that are useful for human health. They are, but it might not be so useful to all humans. Why? Because most biomedical research studies done in mice and rats are done only in male animals. Females were seen as too variable. The surging hormones, the emotions! The rodent show cravings, amirite? Well, not anymore. We're talking to Rebecca Shansky about why people should stud...more

  • #532 A Class Conversation

    Aug 23 2019

    This week we take a look at the sociology of class. What factors create and impact class? How do we try and study it? How does class play out differently in different countries like the US and the UK? How does it impact the political system? We talk with Daniel Laurison, Assistant Professor of Sociology at Swarthmore College and coauthor of the book "The Class Ceiling: Why it Pays to be Privileged", about class and its impacts on people and our systems.

  • #SB2 2019 Science Birthday Minisode: Mary Golda Ross

    Aug 09 2019

    Our second annual Science Birthday is here, and this year we celebrate the wonderful Mary Golda Ross, born 9 August 1908. She died in 2008 at age 99, but left a lasting mark on the science of rocketry and space exploration as an early woman in engineering, and one of the first Native Americans in engineering. Join Rachelle and Bethany for this very special birthday minisode celebrating Mary and her achievements. Thanks to our Patreons who make this show possible! Read more about Mary G. Ross: In...more

  • #531 Induced Seismicity

    Aug 02 2019

    This week we're talking about earthquakes. If you live in Alberta or Oklahoma, you've probably heard about fracking or waste water wells causing earthquakes. We'll speak with seismologist Ruijia Wang about how that happens, and what we can control with these earthquakes. Then we speak to Sara McBride, with the United States Geological Survey, who explains why earthquake response communication should be taking embarrassment into account. Related links: Canadian Induced Seismicity Collaboratio...more

  • #530 Why Aren't We Dead Yet?

    Jul 19 2019

    We only notice our immune systems when they aren't working properly, or when they're under attack. How does our immune system understand what bits of us are us, and what bits are invading germs and viruses? How different are human immune systems from the immune systems of other creatures? And is the immune system so often the target of sketchy medical advice? Those questions and more, this week in our conversation with author Idan Ben-Barak about his book "Why Aren't We Dead Yet?: The Survivor&r...more

  • #529 Do You Really Want to Find Out Who's Your Daddy?

    Jul 05 2019

    At least some of you by now have probably spit into a tube and mailed it off to find out who your closest relatives are, where you might be from, and what terrible diseases might await you. But what exactly did you find out? And what did you give away? In this live panel at Awesome Con we bring in science writer Tina Saey to talk about all her DNA testing, and bioethicist Debra Mathews, to determine whether Tina should have done it at all. Related links: What FamilyTreeDNA sharing genetic data w...more

  • #528 A Shock Machine and The Lost Boys

    Jun 28 2019

    This week, we take a look at 2 notable post world war 2 social psychology experiments and their creators: Stanley Milgram and his "shock machine", and Muzafer Sherif's boys camp study on group conflict. How did these scientists approach their work? How did the experiments run? How do the experiments hold up? How did people feel then about the ethics of them, and how do we feel now? We are joined by registered psychologist and author Gina Perry, who has written a book each on these men: "Behind t...more

  • #527 Honey I CRISPR'd the Kids

    Jun 14 2019

    This week we're coming to you from Awesome Con in Washington, D.C. There, host Bethany Brookshire led a panel of three amazing guests to talk about the promise and perils of CRISPR, and what happens now that CRISPR babies have (maybe?) been born. Featuring science writer Tina Saey, molecular biologist Anne Simon, and bioethicist Alan Regenberg. A Nobel Prize winner argues banning CRISPR babies won’t work Geneticists push for a 5-year global ban on gene-edited babies A CRISPR spin-off cause...more

  • #526 Let Me See You Sweat

    Jun 07 2019

    Summer is coming, and summer means sweat. Why do we sweat so much, and how do we do it? We hear from Yana Kamberov about the evolutionary origins of our sweat glands, and why it's one of the things that makes us mammals. Then we talk about why some (but not all) of our sweat STINKS. We'll speak with Gavin Thomas about the bacteria that give us our BO. Related links: Comparative evidence for the independent evolution of hair and sweat gland traits in primates on bioRxiv Structural basis of malodo...more

  • #525 Chernobyl

    May 31 2019

    This week we're looking back at a man-made disaster that changed the world: the Chernobyl meltdown. We take a closer look at all the contributing factors that lead the No 4 reactor at Chernobyl to explode and how the Soviet Union's political, scientific, and administrative culture at the time contributed to the disaster. And we'll look at the fallout, the logistics of trying to clean up a radioactive accident where five minutes in the wrong area will literally kill you, and the long-tail disaste...more

  • #524 The Human Network

    May 17 2019

    What does a network of humans look like and how does it work? How does information spread? How do decisions and opinions spread? What gets distorted as it moves through the network and why? This week we dig into the ins and outs of human networks with Matthew Jackson, Professor of Economics at Stanford University and author of the book "The Human Network: How Your Social Position Determines Your Power, Beliefs, and Behaviours".

  • #523 Happy As A Clam (Garden)

    May 10 2019

    This week we’re discussing clam gardens on the west coast of Canada and the US, and how indigenous people have been actively managing food resources in the area for thousands of years. Clam garden rock walls are thousands of years old, and people have been actively maintaining them up to today, but Europeans and the scientific community ignored their existence for a couple of centuries. We speak with Dana Lepofsky, Professor in the Department of Archaeology at Simon Fraser University, and ...more

  • #522 Home Alone?

    May 03 2019

    Do you keep your house clean? Do you think that, maybe with the exception of the dog, you're alone in your home? Well, we hate to tell you this, but you're wrong. Your house is filled with microbes, fungi, bugs and much more. This week, we talk about the life filling you're house with Rob Dunn, a professor at North Carolina State University and author of the book "Never Home Alone: From Microbes to Millipedes, Camel Crickets, and Honeybees, the Natural History of Where We Live". This episode is...more

  • #521 The Curious Life of Krill

    Apr 19 2019

    Krill may be one of the most abundant forms of life on our planet... but it turns out we don't know that much about them. For a creature that underpins a massive ocean ecosystem and lives in our oceans in massive numbers, they're surprisingly difficult to study. We sit down and shine some light on these underappreciated crustaceans with Stephen Nicol, Adjunct Professor at the University of Tasmania, Scientific Advisor to the Association of Responsible Krill Harvesting Companies, and author of th...more

  • #520 A Closer Look at Objectivism

    Apr 12 2019

    Update: the previous file had overlapping tracks during the second interview. This has now been fixed. This week we broach the topic of Objectivism. We'll be speaking with Keith Lockitch, senior fellow at the Ayn Rand Institute, about the philosophy of Objectivism as it's taught through Ayn Rand's writings. Then we'll speak with Denise Cummins, cognitive scientist, author and fellow at the Association for Psychological Science, about the impact of Objectivist ideology on society. Related links: ...more

  • #519 Animal Architects

    Apr 05 2019

    Don't make the mistake of thinking that humans are the only species that's mastered architecture. There are bugs out in this world that form huge, self healing structures out of their own bodies. And there are other bugs that form fountains of thousands - all to destroy a pizza in just a few hours. Move over, pirhanas. The black soldier fly larvae are here. This week, we talk to Olga Shishkov and Sulisay Phonekeo about their work studying living animal structures, and what that could mean for ho...more

  • #518 With Genetic Knowledge Comes the Need for Counselling

    Mar 22 2019

    This week we delve into genetic testing - for yourself and your future children. We speak with Jane Tiller, lawyer and genetic counsellor, about genetic tests that are available to the public, and what to do with the results of these tests. And we talk with Noam Shomron, associate professor at the Sackler School of Medicine at Tel Aviv University, about technological advancements his lab has made in the genetic testing of fetuses.

  • #517 Life in Plastic, Not Fantastic

    Mar 15 2019

    Our modern lives run on plastic. It's in the computers and phones we use. It's in our clothing, it wraps our food. It surrounds us every day, and when we throw it out, it's devastating for the environment. This week we air a live show we recorded at the 2019 Advancement of Science meeting in Washington, D.C., where Bethany Brookshire sat down with three plastics researchers - Christina Simkanin, Chelsea Rochman, and Jennifer Provencher - and a live audience to discuss plastics in our oceans. Whe...more

  • #516 The Keys to Skeletons Lost

    Mar 08 2019

    Until we break a bone or two, we tend not to spend too much time thinking about our bones, where they come from, and how we know what we know about them. Well, today we've got a bone to pick with our own skeletons. We'll talk with Brian Switek, author of the book "Skeleton Keys: The Secret Life of Bone", about where your skeleton comes from, and how so many of the skeletons scientists have studied have complicated pasts and uncertain futures.

  • #515 Humanimal

    Mar 01 2019

    Are humans special? We feel special, like we're somehow different from the rest of life on the planet. But are we really? This week, we spend the hour with Adam Rutherford, science broadcaster, writer, and author of the book "Humanimal: How Homo Sapiens Became Nature's Most Paradoxical Creature - A New Evolutionary History". We discuss the commone ways we think humans are different from other creatures and how, sometimes, those ideas turns out to be not quite correct. Along the way we also think...more

  • #514 Arctic Energy (Rebroadcast)

    Feb 22 2019

    This week we're looking at how alternative energy works in the arctic. We speak to Louie Azzolini and Linda Todd from the Arctic Energy Alliance, a non-profit helping communities reduce their energy usage and transition to more affordable and sustainable forms of energy. And the lessons they're learning along the way can help those of us further south.

  • #513 Dinosaur Tails

    Feb 15 2019

    This week: dinosaurs! We're discussing dinosaur tails, bipedalism, paleontology public outreach, dinosaur MOOCs, and other neat dinosaur related things with Dr. Scott Persons from the University of Alberta, who is also the author of the book "Dinosaurs of the Alberta Badlands".

  • #512 All Over The Map

    Feb 08 2019

    Today we're talking about maps: why we can spend hours pouring over them, the stories they tell, the information they visualize, and how they border between map and a work of art is a gloriously fuzzy one. We spend the hour with journalists Betsy Mason and Greg Miller, co-authors of a beautiful and fascinating new book "All Over the Map: A Cartographic Odyssey". You can see some of the maps we discuss over at the All Over the Map section of National Geographic.

  • #511 Ok you worked out, now what?

    Feb 01 2019

    Ok, you got out the door and did a workout. Excellent work! Now you're sore. Rats. What do you do? Foam roll? Stretch? Stand butt naked in a tank pumping in liquid nitrogen? Put on specially branded pajamas? The recovery options are endless these days. But which of them work best? Heck, which even work at all? We're talking with Christie Aschwanden about her new book: "Good to Go: What the Athlete in All of Us Can Learn From the Strange Science of Recovery". Related links: ‘Good to Go&rsqu...more

  • #510 Gene Drives (Rebroadcast)

    Jan 25 2019

    This week on Science for the People: who is driving this genetic bus? We'll talk with Kevin Esvelt about gene drives, what they are, where they come from what they can be used for, and why the science on gene drives should be done as openly as possible. Then, we'll speak with Laurie Zoloth about the ethical questions surrounding their use, why people are so afraid, and who should be making the decision to use this technology in the wild. This episode is hosted by Bethany Brookshire, science writ...more

  • #509 Anisogamy: The Beginning of Male and Female

    Jan 18 2019

    This week we discuss how the sperm and egg came to be, and how a difference of reproductive interest has led to sexual conflict in bed bugs. We'll be speaking with Dr. Geoff Parker, an evolutionary biologist credited with developing a theory to explain the evolution of two sexes, about anisogamy, sexual reproduction through the fusion of two different gametes: the egg and the sperm. Then we'll speak with Dr. Roberto Pereira, research scientist in urban entomology at the University of Florida, ab...more

  • #508 Freedom's Laboratory

    Jan 11 2019

    This week we're looking back at where some of our modern ideas about science being objective, independent, and apolitical come from. We journey back to the Cold War with historian and writer Audra Wolfe, talking about her newest book "Freedom's Laboratory: The Cold War Struggle for the Soul of Science".

  • #507 Poaching, and We Don't Mean Eggs

    Jan 04 2019

    We all know poaching elephants for their ivory and pangolins for their scales is wrong, right? Then why do people keep doing it? We speak with Rachel Nuwer, author of the book "Poached: Inside the Dark World of Wildlife Trafficking", to find out, and figure out what can be done to stop it. And we'll talk with Vincent Nijman about why, when scientists find a new or rare species, they might want to keep that exciting information to themselves. Related links: Secrecy considerations for conserving L...more

  • #506 Everybody Poops (Rebroadcast)

    Dec 28 2018

    This week on Science for the People, everybody poops! And everybody pees. But we probably don't spend a lot of time thinking about exactly how that works. Well, put down your lunch and listen up. We're talking with David Chu, a pediatric urological surgeon about urine. Then we'll hear from his brother, Daniel Chu, who's a colorectal surgeon, about poop. Finally, we'll hear from IgNobel prize winner Patricia Yang about her work studying the flow rate of mammal pee, and why all mammals pee and poo...more

  • #505 Top Science Stories of 2018

    Dec 21 2018

    We're looking back over 2018 and calling out our favourite science news stories from this past year: the ones we think you should remember -- or hear about for the first time if maybe you've been taking a break from the internet -- and we've brought in a team of reports from Science News to do it. Buckle up for a whistle stop tour of this year's most fascinating science news. Related links: Top 10 stories of 2018 on Science News News of the first gene-edited babies ignited a firestorm by Tina He...more

  • #504 The Art of Logic

    Dec 14 2018

    How can mathematics help us have better arguments? This week we spend the hour with "The Art of Logic in an Illogical World" author, mathematician Eugenia Cheng, as she makes her case that the logic of mathematics can combine with emotional resonance to allow us to have better debates and arguments. Along the way we learn a lot about rigorous logic using arguments you're probably having every day, while also learning a lot about our own underlying beliefs and assumptions.

  • #503 Postpartum Blues (Rebroadcast)

    Dec 07 2018

    When a woman gives birth, it seems like everyone wants to know how the baby is doing. What does it weigh? Is it breathing right? Did it cry? But it turns out that, in the United States, we're not doing to great at asking how the mom, who just pushed something the size of a pot roast out of something the size of a Cheerio, is doing. This week we talk to anthropologist Kate Clancy about her postpartum experience and how it is becoming distressingly common, and we speak with Julie Wiebe about prola...more

  • #502 Nerd Gift Extravaganza

    Nov 30 2018

    It's that time of year when nerds who care about each other buy each other nerdy presents. And because we know it can be so difficult to find that "just right" gift for the geek in your life, we're here to jump start the process with a boost of inspiration. We've brought back pop-science power-readers Joanne Manaster and John Dupuis to highlight their favourite books from the last year that you might not have heard of. And Bethany Brookshire and Rachelle Saunders prowl the internet for gift idea...more

  • #501 Hidden Technology

    Nov 23 2018

    This week we spend the hour with Kat Jungnickel to discuss her new book "Bikes & Bloomers: Victorian women inventors and their extraordinary cycle wear". New technology can change social expectations and sometimes requires other new inventions so everyone can participate. Those might sound like modern problems, but Victorian Britain in the 1890's had to answer the question: how can a woman use the latest must-have technology, the safety bicycle, while wearing a corset and long, multilayered ...more

  • #500 500th Episode

    Nov 16 2018

    This week we turn 500! To celebrate, we're taking the opportunity to go off format, talk about the journey through 500 episodes, and answer questions from our lovely listeners. Join hosts Bethany Brookshire and Rachelle Saunders as we talk through the show's history, how we've grown and changed, and what we love about the Science for the People. Here's to 500 more episodes!

  • #499 Technology, Work and The Future (Rebroadcast)

    Nov 09 2018

    This week, we're thinking about how rapidly advancing technology will change our future, our work, and our well-being. We speak to Richard and Daniel Susskind about their book "The Future of Professions: How Technology Will Transform the Work of Human Experts" about the impacts technology may have on professional work. And Nicholas Agar comes on to talk about his book "The Sceptical Optimist" and the ways new technologies will affect our perceptions and well-being.

  • #498 The Poison Squad

    Nov 02 2018

    This week, let's go back in time. Back to the 1900s, when life was pure and clean, and your milk was preserved with formaldehyde, your meat with Borax and your canned peas with copper. On second thought, that trip back in time doesn't sound so great. This week, we're meeting the Poison Squad. We're spending the hour with Deborah Blum talking about the history of food regulation, or the lack thereof, and her new book "The Poison Squad: One Chemist's Single-Minded Crusade for Food Safety at t...more

  • #497 Built

    Oct 26 2018

    This week we're talking about towers, bridges, sinking cathedrals, and other feats of structural engineering. How do we build skyscrapers? How do engineers plan for disaster? What have we learned from structures that have failed about how to build things better? We speak with structural engineer Roma Agrawal about her book "Built: The Hidden Stories Behind Our Structures" and what the constructed world we live in looks like through an engineer's eyes.

  • #496 Anti-Intellectualism: Down With the Scientist!

    Oct 19 2018

    This week we get to the bottom of anti-intellectualism. We'll be speaking with David Robson, senior journalist at BBC Future, about misology -- the hatred of reason and argument -- and how it may be connected to distrust of intellectuals. Then we'll speak with Bruno Takahashi, associate professor of environmental journalism and communication at Michigan State University, about how the way we consume media affects our scientific knowledge and how we feel about scientists and the press.

  • #495 Earth Science in Space

    Oct 12 2018

    Some worlds are made of sand. Some are made of water. Some are even made of salt. In science fiction and fantasy, planet can be made of whatever you want. But what does that mean for how the planets themselves work? When in doubt, throw an asteroid at it. This is a live show recorded at the 2018 Dragon Con in Atlanta Georgia. Featuring Travor Valle, Mika McKinnon, David Moscato, Scott Harris, and moderated by our own Bethany Brookshire. Note: The sound isn't as good as we'd hoped but we love the...more

  • #494 The Tangled Taxonomic Tree

    Oct 05 2018

    The idea of the tree of life appears in many of the world's religions, and it appears, famously, in science, with Darwin's famous tree of life, where species evolve over millions of years from a common ancestor in the trunk to new species in the branches. But while Darwin's tree of life endures in textbooks, t-shirts and tattoos, science has moved on. And the tree of life has become more of a tangle. We will speak with David Quammen about his new book "The Tangled Tree: A Radical New History of ...more

  • #493 Trowel Blazing (Rebroadcast)

    Sep 28 2018

    This week we look at some of the lesser known historical figures and current public perception of anthropology, archaeology, and other fields that end in "ology". Rebecca Wragg Sykes, an archaeologist, writer, and co-founder of the TrowelBlazers, tells us about the Raising Horizons project and how their team is trying to shine the spotlight on the forgotten historical women of archaeological, geological, and palaeontological science. And Kristina Killgrove, assistant professor of anthropology at...more

  • #492 Flint Water Crisis

    Sep 21 2018

    This week we dig into the Flint water crisis: what happened, how it got so bad, what turned the tide, what's still left to do, and the mix of science, politics, and activism that are still needed to finish pulling Flint out of the crisis. We spend the hour with Dr Mona Hanna-Attisha, a physician, scientist, activist, the founder and director of the Pediatric Public Health Initiative, and author of the book "What the Eyes Don't See: A Story of Crisis, Resistance, and Hope in an American City".

  • #491 Frankenstein LIVES

    Sep 14 2018

    Two hundred years ago, Mary Shelley gave us a legendary monster, shaping science fiction for good. Thanks to her, the name of Frankenstein is now famous world-wide. But who was the real monster here? The creation? Or the scientist that put him together? Tune in to a live show from Dragon Con 2018 in Atlanta, as we breakdown the science of Frankenstein, complete with grave robbing and rivers of maggots. Featuring Tina Saey, Lucas Hernandez, Travor Valle, and Nancy Miorelli. Moderated by our own B...more

  • #490 Breaking Down Chemical Weapons

    Sep 07 2018

    It sounds like something out of a spy novel: an ex-spy is poisoned on a park bench, or a dictator's brother is sprayed in the face with a chemical weapon and dies. But these are real life events, and they are the result of chemical weapons. What are these chemicals, how do the work, and what on Earth do people do about them? We're talking with chemist Chris Cramer about his expertise, getting rid of chemical weapons. Related links: Nerge agent attack on spy used 'Novichok' poison, on c&en No...more

  • #489 Sand

    Aug 31 2018

    Did you know that, even though sand the most used building materials in world, the sand in the desert is more or less useless? Did you know there is a serious black market trade in sand in certain parts of the world, and that people are murdered to protect that black market trade? This week we learn just how much of our modern world is built with, on, and using sand. We spend the hour with award-winning journalist and author Vince Beiser, talking about his new book "The World in a Grain: The Sto...more

  • #488 Big Chicken (Rebroadcast)

    Aug 24 2018

    We eat a lot of chicken. But we didn't used to. What changed? In part, what changed was the discovery that antibiotics could build a bigger, better chicken. Now, the big chicken may be suffering the results of too much medicine. This week, we hear from science journalist Maryn McKenna about her new book "Big Chicken: The Incredible Story of How Antibiotics Created Modern Agriculture and Changed the Way the World Eats." We'll also hear from zoonotic disease specialist Tara Smith about the challen...more

  • #486 Volcanoes

    Aug 10 2018

    This week we're talking volcanoes. Because there are few things that fascinate us more than the amazing, unstoppable power of an erupting volcano. First, Jessica Johnson takes us through the latest activity from the Kilauea volcano in Hawaii to help us understand what's happening with this headline-grabbing volcano. And Janine Krippner joins us to highlight some of the lesser-known volcanoes that can be found in the USA, the different kinds of eruptions we might one day see at them, and how dama...more

  • #485 Fine Times with Wine

    Aug 03 2018

    How do you pick your wine? By its history? By its grape? By the picture on the bottle? Well you're about to get your wine world turned upside down. We'll hear about the history of this fabulous fermentation from Kevin Begos, author of the book "Tasting the Past: The Science of Flavor and the Search for the Origins of Wine". Then we'll talk with Erika Szymanski about the little microbes that make it all possible, yeast! On the way, we're going to have Science for the People's first ever wine tast...more

  • #484 Animal Weapons (Rebroadcast)

    Jul 27 2018

    This week, we're talking about weapons: both the ones that evolve in nature, and those created by humanity. We'll talk about the arms races that spur the development of horns and claws, warships and nuclear weapons, with Doug Emlen, Professor in the Division of Biological Sciences at the University of Montana, and author of "Animal Weapons: The Evolution of Battle."

  • #483 Wild Moms

    Jul 20 2018

    This week we're talking about what it takes to be a mother in the wild, and how how human moms compare to other moms in the animal kingdom. We're spending an hour with Dr. Carin Bondar, prolific science communicator and author. We'll be discussing a myriad of stories from her latest book, "Wild Moms: Motherhood in the Animal Kingdom", covering the exciting, stressful and even sinister sides of motherhood.

  • #481 23 and You

    Jul 06 2018

    These days, all you need to do is fill a tube with spit and mail it off to find out all about your ancestors, and even about your risks for certain diseases. Loads of DNA sequencing and typing companies exist to tell you all about yourself. But how accurate are they? And how safe is that information? We'll speak with science writer Tina Hesman Saey about her big project sending off her spit to more companies than she can count. For science, of course. Then, we'll take out ethical concerns to bio...more

  • #480 Cursing and Conversation

    Jun 29 2018

    Ever notice how the bits of language we use all the time are often the bits we study the least? Like 'ums' and 'uhs', the way conversations flow and of course curse words! Today we're taking a deeper look under the hood of the conversation machine, and inspecting it's sweary bits and bobs a little more closely than usual. First we'll take a closer look at the flow of a typical conversation with Nick Enfield, Professor of Linguistics at the University of Sydney, about his book "How We Talk: The I...more

  • #479 Garden of Marvels (Rebroadcast)

    Jun 22 2018

    This week we're learning about botany and the colorful science of gardening. Author Ruth Kassinger joins us to discuss her book "A Garden of Marvels: How We Discovered that Flowers Have Sex, Leaves Eat Air, and Other Secrets of the Way Plants Work." And we'll speak to NASA researcher Gioia Massa about her work to solve the technical challenges of gardening in space. 

  • #478 She Has Her Mother's Laugh

    Jun 15 2018

    What does heredity really mean? Carl Zimmer would argue it's more than your genes along. In "She Has Her Mother’s Laugh: The Power, Perversions, and Potential of Heredity", Zimmer covers the history of genetics and what kinship and heredity really mean when we're discovering how to alter our own DNA, and, potentially, the DNA of our children.

  • #477 Cure for Catastrophe

    Jun 08 2018

    Tsunamis. Earthquakes. Volcanoes. These are the sorts of natural disasters movies are made from, because throughout history we've learned that natural disasters often become human disasters. But how much are we contributing to the scale of the human toll of natural disasters when they hit? How much do our decisions about where to build, what to build, and how to build impact that cost? We spend the hour with Robert Muir-Wood, author of "The Cure for Catastrophe: How We Can Stop Manufacturing Nat...more

  • #476 Science in Fiction

    Jun 01 2018

    Nerds and geeks of all stripes love to dissect exactly how their favorite (or least favorite) sci-fi and fantasy tales got science so wrong. But many TV shows, movies and book actually manage to get science pretty right (except for those pesky time-travel impossibilities). How do they do that? A lot of times, they phone a scientist. We'll speak with one of those scientists, Mika McKinnon, about the work she does advising TV shows and movies on physics, space and more. And we'll talk with science...more

  • #SB1 2018 Science Birthday Bonus Short Minisode: Lloyd Quarterman

    May 31 2018

    Our very first Science Birthday spotlight shines on Lloyd Quarterman, born May 31, 1918. He died in 1982, but not before leaving his mark on science. Join Bethany and Rachelle in a little special birthay minisode celebrating Lloyd and his accomplishments. Thanks to everyone who joined our Patreon anew!

  • #475 Mother Nature is Trying to Kill You (Rebroadcast)

    May 25 2018

    This week, we're learning how deadly and delightful our planet and its ecosystem can be. We're joined by biologist Dan Riskin, co-host of Discovery Canada's Daily Planet, to talk about his book "Mother Nature Is Trying to Kill You: a Lively Tour Through the Dark Side of the Natural World." And we'll talk to astronomer and author Phil Plait about Science Getaways, his company that offers educational vacation experiences for science lovers.

  • #473 Colour Me... Structurally?

    May 11 2018

    This week on Science for the People, we're looking at a different way of producing colour than you might be used to. Structural colour relies on nano-scale structures to reflect particular wavelengths of light. To start things off, we'll be discussing some of the science behind naturally occurring colours, and the engineering to produce manufactured ones with PhD student Victoria Hwang. After that, Dr. Maria McNamara joins us to discuss how colour information is preserved in the fossil record an...more

  • #472 A Good Bout of Plague

    May 04 2018

    Who doesn't love a good medical pandemic? This week we're diving into the bubonic plague. We'll talk with Boris Schmid about whether rats should really get the blame for the Black Death, and we'll talk with Loren Cassin Sackett about what happens today when plague strikes... prairie dog towns! Don't blame the rats for spreading the Black Death on Science News Human ectoparasites and the spread of plague in Europe during the Second Pandemic Do pathogens reduce genetic diversity of their hosts? Va...more

  • #471 Pigs and Fish: Personality in Animals

    Apr 27 2018

    This week we learn about how personality is studied in two of our favorite animals: pigs and fish. We'll be speaking with Rose O'Dea, PhD candidate at the Evolution and Ecology Research Centre in Sydney, about using computer animation technology to stimulate behavioral responses in zebrafish. Then we'll speak with Kristina Horback, assistant professor at the University of California-Davis, about the connection between personality traits in domesticated pigs and their ability to cope with stressf...more

  • #470 Information Spookyhighway

    Apr 20 2018

    This week we take a closer look at a few of the downsides of the modern internet, and some of the security and privacy challenges that are becoming increasingly troublesome. Rachelle Saunders speaks with cyber security expert James Lyne about how modern hacking differs from the hacks of old, and how an internet without national boards makes it tricky to police online crime across jurisdictions. And Bethany Brookshire speaks with David Garcia, a computer scientist at the Complexity Science Hub an...more

  • #469 The Death and Life of the Great Lakes

    Apr 13 2018

    What happens when you take 5 enourmous freshwater lakes isolated in the middle of a continent and suddenly open them up to the Atlantic? The ecology of the North American Great Lakes is changing fast. We spend the hour with Dan Egan, an award-winning writer and reporter at the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and a senior water policy fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee's School of Freshwater Sciences, to talk about his book "The Death and Life of the Great Lakes" and how invading species ...more

  • #468 Slicing into Surgery

    Apr 06 2018

    Surgery isn't generally a good time these days. There's pain and danger. But surgery today is nothing to the surgery of the past, when desperate patients had to sit, awake and with no painkillers, through the sawing-off of their own limbs. If they made it through that, they frequently died of infections from the dirty hands and instruments of their own doctors. What changed, and who changed it? This week we talk about the transformation of the butchering art with Dr. Lindsey Fitzharris, author o...more

  • #467 Pests in the City (Rebroadcast)

    Mar 30 2018

    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.

  • #466 Wildfire

    Mar 23 2018

    This week we're talking about fire: in particular, wildfires. How they spread and how we manage them, but also the deeper history of wildfires on our planet and how they've been shaping our world for a long, long time. We speak with Andrew Scott, Emeritus Professor of Geology at Royal Holloway, University of London, about his book "Burning Planet: The Story of Fire Through Time", learning about wildfire on our planet now and in deep history. And we catch up with Caroline Weinberg, interm executi...more

  • #465 How The Nose Knows

    Mar 16 2018

    We've all got a nose but how does it work? Why do we like some smells and not others, and why can we all agree that some smells are good and some smells are bad, while others are dependant on personal or cultural preferences? We speak with Asifa Majid, Professor of Language, Communication and Cultural Cognition at Radboud University, about the intersection of culture, language, and smell. And we level up on our olfactory neuroscience with University of Pennsylvania Professor Jay Gottfried.

  • #464 How We Endure

    Mar 09 2018

    Endurance athletes. How do they do it? How does someone push themselves to run an almost 2 hour marathon? How does someone else push themselves to finish a marathon at all? How did humans conquer Everest and free dive to the ocean floor? There's a new book for that. Just in time for the Winter Olympics, we'll hear from Alex Hutchinson, author of the new book Endure: Mind, Body and the Curiously Elastic Limits of Human Performance. And we'll hear from neuropsychologist Lori Haase Alasantro about ...more

  • #463 Trench to Bedside (Rebroadcast)

    Mar 02 2018

    This week we're taking on maggots, wounds, and diarrhea in an episode about medical problems that plague the military, so make sure your last meal is a few hours behind you before you tuck in your ear buds. We speak with Captain Mark Riddle, the director of the United States Military Diarrheal Disease Vaccine Research Program at the US Army Medical Research and Material Command, about new ways to prevent and treat travelers' diarrhea. And we talk with George Peck, a medical entomologist, about u...more

  • #462 The Future of Energy

    Feb 23 2018

    This week, we have some very special guest hosts, sharing a recording of a panel they moderated about the future of energy and where we can draw inspiration from science fiction. This panel was recorded at the Generation Energy Conference in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada, and moderated by Molly Swain and Chelsea Vowel, the ladies that run the most excellent podcast Métis in Space.

  • #461 Adhesives

    Feb 16 2018

    This week we're discussing glue from two very different times. We speak with Dr. Jianyu Li about his research into a new type of medical adhesive. And Dr. Geeske Langejans explains her work making and investigating Stone Age and Paleolithic glues.

  • #460 Brake For Menopause

    Feb 09 2018

    I don't know about you, but when I learned about the female reproductive cycle, I learned that hey, these are the hormone changes that happen. Then in menopause they stop. And you get hot flashes. But it turns out it is a lot more complicated than that. First, we'll speak with cognitive neuroscientist Lauren Drogos about the memory changes that happen during menopause. Then, where does this menopause thing even come from and why don't men suffer too? We'll take up the topic with biological anthr...more

  • #459 Postpartum Blues

    Feb 02 2018

    When a woman gives birth, it seems like everyone wants to know how the baby is doing. What does it weigh? Is it breathing right? Did it cry? But it turns out that, in the United States, we're not doing to great at asking how the mom, who just pushed something the size of a pot roast out of something the size of a Cheerio, is doing. This week we talk to anthropologist Kate Clancy about her postpartum experience and how it is becoming distressingly common, and we speak with Julie Wiebe about prola...more

  • #458 Circumcision (Rebroadcast)

    Jan 26 2018

    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 Fel...more

  • #457 Trowel Blazing

    Jan 19 2018

    This week we look at some of the lesser known historical figures and current public perception of anthropology, archaeology, and other fields that end in "ology". Rebecca Wragg Sykes, an archaeologist, writer, and co-founder of the TrowelBlazers, tells us about the Raising Horizons project and how their team is trying to shine the spotlight on the forgotten historical women of archaeological, geological, and palaeontological science. And Kristina Killgrove, assistant professor of anthropology at...more

  • #456 Inside a Conservation NGO

    Jan 12 2018

    This week we take a close look at conservation NGOS: what they do, how they work, and - most importantly - why we need them. We'll be speaking with Shyla Raghav, the Climate Change Lead at Conservation International, about using strategy and policy to tackle climate change. Then we'll speak with Rebecca Shaw, Lead Scientist at the World Wildlife Fund, about how and why you should get involved with conservation initiatives.

  • #455 New Year's Resolutions

    Jan 05 2018

    Happy New Year! Science for the People is ringing in the new year with a hard look at new year's resolutions. A lot of these involve long term goals, and forming new habits. But how do we stick with them? We'll speak with Charles DuHigg, author of the the book "The Power of Habit: Why We Do What We Do in Life and Business", to find out. Then we'll talk with behavioral scientist Ayelet Fishbach about what she's learned from studying the stick-to-it-iveness of students. Related links: Immediate Re...more

  • #454 Sports Science (Rebroadcast)

    Dec 29 2017

    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.

  • #453 The Biggest Science Stories of 2017

    Dec 22 2017

    Should old science findings be forgot, and never brought to mind? No! For the year may be nearly over but we're going to see it out in style! This week, Bethany and Rachelle look back on some of the biggest science findings of the year with the writers of Science News Magazine. We've got colliding neutron stars, new planets, edited genes, splitting ice shelves and more! Related links: Top 10 Science Stories of 2017 on Science News This year’s neutron star collision unlocks cosmic mysteries...more

  • #452 Face Recognition and Identity

    Dec 15 2017

    This week we deep dive into the science of how we recognize faces and why some of us are better -- or worse -- at this than others. We talk with Brad Duchaine, Professor of Psychology at Dartmouth College, about both super recognizers and face blindness. And we speak with Matteo Martini, Psychology Lecturer at the University of East London, about a study looking at twins who have difficulty telling which one of them a photo was of. Charity Links: Union of Concerned Scientists Evidence For Democr...more

  • #451 Merry Science Giftmas

    Dec 08 2017

    You probably have shopping to do and plenty of gifts to buy, and -- as is our tradition -- we have put together a list of helpful suggestions for things the science lover in your life might appreciate receiving. This year we brought in Illinois’s School of Integrative Biology lecturer and science educator Joanne Manaster, and brought back our unofficial "Librarian in Residence" John Dupuis to talk about some of their favourite science books from 2017. And your regular hosts Rachelle Saunde...more

  • #450 Sing a Little Song

    Dec 01 2017

    How do we talk? And how do we sing? Most of us walk around making sound all day without any real idea of how we do it. We'll speak with vocologist Ingo Titze about how the human voice sings, the parts of a human singing voice, and more. We'll also speak with Tecumseh Fitch about why we talk... but monkeys don't. The reason? They've got the voice, but not the brains. We've even got some creepy recordings. Related links: Ingo's tips for tired voices: grab a straw! A reflex resonance model of vocal...more

  • #449 Arctic Energy

    Nov 24 2017

    This week we're looking at how alternative energy works in the arctic. We speak to Louie Azzolini and Linda Todd from the Arctic Energy Alliance, a non-profit helping communities reduce their energy usage and transition to more affordable and sustainable forms of energy. And the lessons they're learning along the way can help those of us further south.

  • #448 Pavlov (Rebroadcast)

    Nov 17 2017

    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." 

  • #447 Stormy Weather

    Nov 10 2017

    This week on we take a closer look at weather forecasting, meteorology, and the science (and art) of predicting severe weather patterns, both locally and more broadly across the planet. We speak with Rick Smith, Warning Coordination Meteorologist at the National Weather Service Forecast Office in Norman, Oklahoma, about how local weather forecasting and severe storm warnings work. And we talk with Chris Huntingford, a climate modeller at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology in the UK, about how ...more

  • #446 Frogs From the Skin In

    Nov 03 2017

    Pictures of poison frogs are a popular form of home decor. Tiny size, bright colors, super deadly, they've got it all. But how exactly do poison frogs avoid poisoning themselves? This week we talk with Rebecca Tarvin and Cecilia Borghese, two scientists who studied how poison frogs survive their own toxins. And we speak with Sandra Goutte, a herpetologists who studies frog ears, how they work, and whether one tiny, adorable pumpkin toadlet can hear itself talk. This episode is hosted by Bethany...more

  • #445 AI: Ant Intelligence

    Oct 27 2017

    This week we look at why ants seem to act much smarter in groups than on their own, and how we can study their swarm intelligence using robots. We'll be speaking with Stephen Pratt, associate professor in the School of Life Sciences at Arizona State University, about how ants in a colony work together to look for things they need, like nest sites and food. Then we'll speak with Simon Garnier, assistant professor in the Department of Biological Sciences at the New Jersey Institute of Technology, ...more

  • #444 The V-Word (Rebroadcast)

    Oct 20 2017

    This week, we're looking at the social and biological science of female sex organs. We'll talk to Dr. Anthony Atala, director of the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center Institute for Regenerative Medicine, about the creation and use of lab-grown vaginas. Biology professor Marie Herberstein exposes the bias against female genitalia in scientific studies. And science writer Emily Anthes tells us about the history and promising future of female condoms. 

  • #442 From Nobel to Ig Nobel

    Oct 06 2017

    The Nobel prizes are, well, the Nobel prize of prizes! One of the most elite prizes in the world. But where did they come from, why do they matter, and how do they influence the practice of science? This week we speak with medical historian Nils Hansson and sociologist of science Harriet Zuckerman about the origin and legacy of the Nobel Prizes, and what might help them be more representative of science in the future. And then we talk with Marc Abrahams about another prize, the Ig Nobel prizes, ...more

  • #441 Superhuman

    Sep 29 2017

    This week we take a closer look at people with brain abilities that appear superhuman. We speak with Craig Stark, Professor of Neurobiology and Behavior at the University of California Irvine, about hyperthymesia and people who possess an extremely detailed autobiographical memory. Then we talk with Jamie Ward, Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience at the University of Sussex, about synaesthesia, multi-sensory substitution, and people who see sounds, taste words, and hear colours.

  • #440 Weapons of Math Destruction (Rebroadcast)

    Sep 22 2017

    This week on Science for the People we look at the modern, inventive ways we try to use math and algorithms to make better decisions, and what happens when those solutions cause more problems than they solve. We speak with Cathy O'Neil about her book Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy and the increasingly opaque and unregulated algorithms that are creeping into our lives. We also talk with David Robinson, co-founder and principal of the think t...more

  • #439 Flooded

    Sep 15 2017

    This week on Science for the People, we take a closer look at what happens when water falls from the sky, how it moves once its on the ground, and what happens when people and water get in each other's way. We talk with Lucy Barker, Hydrological Analyst at the Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, to get us started with some quick Hydrology 101. And we speak with Anne Jefferson, Associate Professor at Kent State University, about the challenges of redirecting water through, under, and around our c...more

  • #438 Big Chicken

    Sep 08 2017

    We eat a lot of chicken. But we didn't used to. What changed? In part, what changed was the discovery that antibiotics could build a bigger, better chicken. Now, the big chicken may be suffering the results of too much medicine. This week, we hear from science journalist Maryn McKenna about her new book "Big Chicken: The Incredible Story of How Antibiotics Created Modern Agriculture and Changed the Way the World Eats." We'll also hear from zoonotic disease specialist Tara Smith about the challen...more

  • #437 Tiny Bubbles, Big Impact

    Sep 01 2017

    This week, we're discussing an effect called cavitation: low pressure causes bubbles of vapour to form in a liquid, which can cause a lot of damage when those bubbles collapse. First up is Paul Brandner, Associate Professor and Research Leader of the Cavitation Research Laboratory at the Australian Maritime College, to discuss how these bubbles form and why they can be so destructive. And we talk with Suzanne Cox, artist, scientist, and engineer, to discuss her work with crustaceans who have evo...more

  • #436 Beauty is A Beast (Rebroadcast)

    Aug 25 2017

    This week we're exploring the science of beauty products and procedures. We'll talk to cosmetic chemist Perry Romanowski, co-founder of thebeautybrains.com, about his book "It's OK to Have Lead in Your Lipstick." And we'll speak to cosmetic surgeon Dr. Elizabeth Hall-Findlay about plastic surgery tourism, and safety regulation in the industry.

  • #435 Total Eclipse of the Sun

    Aug 18 2017

    On August 21, 2017, a solar eclipse is going to appear, visible to most of the continent of North America. Bethany is very, very excited. What's going to happen, and what are scientists doing to take advantage of the event? Bethany Brookshire starts with a primer on the upcoming eclipse with Lisa Grossman, astronomy writer at Science News, then discusses three eclipse-related citizen science projects that need data: Smithsonian Astrophysicist Trae Winter tells us about the Eclipse Soundscapes pr...more

  • #434 The Dictionary

    Aug 11 2017

    This week we look at the science, art, and craft of lexicography as we go backstage into the process of how dictionaries are made. We spend the hour with Kory Stamper, a lexicographer at Merriam-Webster and author of the book "Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries", to learn more about the history of dictionaries, what their purpose is, and how defining words isn't as straightforward as you might think.

  • #433 The State of Science Journalism

    Aug 04 2017

    This week we step into the world of science journalism from the perspectives of two unique and reputable popular science publications. Guest host Anika Hazra speaks with Katie Palmer, senior editor of the online science and health section at WIRED, about her direct route into science journalism through a master's in science reporting and her role as an editor of online content. And she talks with Michael Segal, founding editor and editor-in-chief of Nautlius magazine, about how he transitioned f...more

  • #432 A Sting In The Tail (Rebroadcast)

    Jul 28 2017

    This week we're learning about the fascinating lives of bees, and the important role they play in our global ecosystem. We'll speak to University of Sussex biology professor Dave Goulson about his book "A Sting in the Tale: My Adventures with Bumblebees." And we'll talk to Jocelyn Crocker, founding member of YEG Bees, about the rewards and challenges of urban beekeeping.

  • #431 Memory and Emotion

    Jul 21 2017

    This week we look at how our brains process memory and emotion. We talk to Michael Yassa, Associate Professor in the Departments of Neurobiology and Behavior, and Neurology at UC Irvine, about how our brains discriminate similar memories from each other and the conditions that compromise that ability. And we speak with James McGaugh, Research Fellow and Founding Chair of the Department of Neurobiology and Behavior and Founding Director of the Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory at...more

  • #430 Bacteria in Bodies and On The Farm

    Jul 14 2017

    This week we look at how new science and new challenges are pushing us to think differently about the role of bacteria in healthcare and pest control in agriculture. We speak to award-winning science writer Ed Yong about his book I Contain Multitudes: The Microbes Within Us and a Grander View of Life" and how our understanding of how microscopic organisms affect our life and health has changed. And we talk with Emily Monosson, environmental toxicologist and author, about her book "Natural Defens...more

  • #429 Gene Drives

    Jul 07 2017

    This week on Science for the People: who is driving this genetic bus? We'll talk with Kevin Esvelt about gene drives, what they are, where they come from what they can be used for, and why the science on gene drives should be done as openly as possible. Then, we'll speak with Laurie Zoloth about the ethical questions surrounding their use, why people are so afraid, and who should be making the decision to use this technology in the wild. This episode is hosted by Bethany Brookshire, science writ...more

  • #428 Cities of the Future (Rebroadcast)

    Jun 30 2017

    This week, we're listening to "Cities of The Future," a panel discussion about the future of human living spaces recorded live at CONvergence 2014. Panelists Jamie Bernstein, Ryan Consell and Shawn Lawrence Otto discuss how cities can adapt to accommodate the changing demographics, economics, and environment of a warming planet.

  • #427 The Life Project

    Jun 23 2017

    This week we're diving deep into the history and current state of some of the largest and longest running studies in the world. We speak with science journalist, Chief Magazine Editor for Nature, and author Helen Pearson about her book "The Life Project: The Extraordinary Story of 70,000 Ordinary Lives" and the history of the long-running series of British longitudinal cohort studies. And we'll talk with Professor Parminder Raina about the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging an what it's like t...more

  • #426 Everybody Poops

    Jun 16 2017

    This week on Science for the People, everybody poops! And everybody pees. But we probably don't spend a lot of time thinking about exactly how that works. Well, put down your lunch and listen up. We're talking with David Chu, a pediatric urological surgeon about urine. Then we'll hear from his brother, Daniel Chu, who's a colorectal surgeon, about poop. Finally, we'll hear from IgNobel prize winner Patricia Yang about her work studying the flow rate of mammal pee, and why all mammals pee and poo...more

  • #425 Cooperative Microbes

    Jun 09 2017

    This week, we're looking at some of the ways bacteria cooperate with other organisms to break down plants. First we speak with Dr. Lisa Karr, Associate Professor of Animal Science at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and get into the details of how rabbits and cows ferment their food. And Mark Stumpf-Allen, Compost Programs Coordinator for the City of Edmonton, has some practical tips to help you keep your compost pile and soil alive and happy.

  • #424 Biohacking (Rebroadcast)

    Jun 02 2017

    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.

  • #423 Built On Bones

    May 26 2017

    This week we dig into the world of bioarchaeology to discover what a bunch of dead people's bones can tell us about our past. We spend the hour with Brenna Hassett, bioarchaeologist and author of the new book Built on Bones: 15,000 Years of Urban Life and Death", learning about the surprising information stashed away in teeth, bones, and mass graves.

  • #422 Is Our Children Learning

    May 19 2017

    This week on science for the people, we're taking on the educational system. We'll be talking with Ulrich Boser about what people think they know about education. It turns out that education is a lot like driving: everyone thinks they're well above average in their knowledge, which means half of us are probably wrong. Then, we'll speak with education researcher Luis Leyva about how math education privileges some at the expense of others. We may not think about it, but the way we have always taug...more

  • #421 Hopeful Monsters

    May 12 2017

    This week on Science for the People, we are talking about a controversial theory in evolutionary biology that has led to research on the role of single mutations that drastically alter the body plan of organisms. Guest host Anika Hazra speaks with Olivier Rieppel, curator of Evolutionary Biology at the Field Museum, about the history of this theory and where it stands within modern science. And she talks with Nipam Patel, professor of Molecular Cell Biology and Intergrative Biology at UC Berkely...more

  • #420 Medical Marijuana (Rebroadcast)

    May 05 2017

    This week, we're taking a closer look at the medical marijuana controversy. How effective is medical marijuana and for what conditions is it a suitable treatment? In our attempt to separate evidence from anecdote we're joined by a panel of three: Dr. David Casarett, a palliative care physician and author of the book "Stoned: A Doctor's Case for Medical Marijuana"; Dr. Robert Wolff, a systematic reviewer for Kleijnen Systematic Reviews and coauthor of a recent systematic review to assess benefits...more

  • #419 The Death and Life of the Single-Family House

    Apr 28 2017

    This week on Science for the People we take a closer look at North America's housing culture: how it got the way it is today, and how it's changing. We speak with Nathanael Lauster, an Associate Professor in the Sociology Department at the University of British Columbia, about his book "The Death and Life of the Single-Family House: Lessons from Vancouver on Building a Livable City".

  • #418 Animal Research Revisited

    Apr 21 2017

    This week we’re revisiting animal research. There's no denying animal research has done amazing things for both humanity and the animals we live and work with. But there are also good reasons why it makes people uncomfortable. We'll talk with philosopher John Hadley about the different philosophical perspectives on animal research, and how scientists might be more open about their practices. We'll also speak with philosopher Janet Stemwedel about current practices regulating research in th...more

  • #417 Lab-Cultured Beef

    Apr 14 2017

    This week we go into a lab that's working to make our kitchens more sustainable. Guest host Jessie Yaros speaks with Professor Mark Post about lab cultured beef, including how a hamburger is grown from scratch in the lab, the advantages of cultured beef over traditional factory farming processes, and the currently public perception of eating lab-made meat products. And Bethany Brookshire chats with astronomy writer Chris Crockett about the approaching Grand Finale of the Cassini mission and how ...more

  • #416 Bodies Everywhere (Rebroadcast)

    Apr 07 2017

    This week we're looking at the morbid and fascinating history of our attempts to grapple with disease and death. We're joined by medical historian Richard Barnett to talk about his book "The Sick Rose: Disease and the Art of Medical Illustration." And we'll speak to mortician and blogger Caitlin Doughty about her book "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory", and her ongoing YouTube series "Ask a Mortician", about the history, science and cultural attitudes attached t...more

  • #415 Weapons of Math Destruction

    Mar 31 2017

    This week on Science for the People we look at the modern, inventive ways we try to use math and algorithms to make better decisions, and what happens when those solutions cause more problems than they solve. We speak with Cathy O'Neil about her book Weapons of Math Destruction: How Big Data Increases Inequality and Threatens Democracy and the increasingly opaque and unregulated algorithms that are creeping into our lives. We also talk with David Robinson, co-founder and principal of the think t...more

  • #414 Perpetual Now

    Mar 24 2017

    Most of us probably think about memories as being about the past. But when memories are gone, it becomes clear just how much they are also about the future. This week we are in search of lost memories. We'll speak with Michael McCloskey about how memories are formed and how you test for memory in people with amnesia. We'll also talk with Michael Lemonick about his new book, The Perpetual Now: A Story of Memory, Amnesia and Love", and the story of Lonnie Sue Johnson and her memory loss. This epis...more

  • #413 Concrete

    Mar 17 2017

    This week is all about that most ubiquitous of building materials: concrete. Historian Robert Courland joins us to talk about his book "Concrete Planet: The Strange and Fascinating Story of the World's Most Common Man-Made Material", our long history using concrete, and what modern engineers could learn from the Romans. We'll speak with Cristina Zanotti, Assistant Professor in the Civil Engineering Department at the University of British Columbia, about building better -- and more sustainable --...more

  • #412 PTSD

    Mar 10 2017

    This week on Science for the People, we’re talking about our changing understanding of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and how we define the trauma that can trigger it. We speak with Alexei Morozov, an Assistant Professor at the Virginia Tech Carilion Research Institute, about his work studying the social signals of distress in mouse models, and about how animal models are helping us better understand PTSD in humans. And we talk with Dr. Monnica Williams, Associate Professor at the Universi...more

  • #411 Coal Wars (Rebroadcast)

    Mar 03 2017

    This week we're learning more about the fossil fuel that powered humanity's first industrial age, and helped set us on a course for a looming climate crisis. We'll speak to Richard Martin, energy editor at the MIT Technology Review, about his book "Coal Wars: The Future of Energy and the Fate of the Planet." And we'll explore the environmental impact of coal with Jeff Deyette, assistant director of energy research in the Climate and Energy program at the Union of Concerned Scientists.

  • #410 The Big Sleep

    Feb 24 2017

    This week we take a closer look at hibernation and how it works. We speak with Kelly Drew, a neuroscientist at the University of Alaska Fairbanks, who studies the Arctic ground squirrel, the "Usain Bolt" of hibernators. And we talk with Frank van Breukelen, a biologist at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, who studies an animal who isn't very good at hibernating: the tenrec. This episode is hosted by Bethany Brookshire, science writer from Science News.

  • #409 Trump War On Science

    Feb 17 2017

    This week we look at what's happening to science in the first days of the Donald Trump presidency, and what might happen if we don't take action in a world where science is growing increasingly political — whether or not we want it to. Librarian John Dupuis returns to talk about what's happened so far, why he's started a chronology of this administration's affects on science, and the similarities and differences to the Canadian War on Science he tracked previously. And we speak with Katie ...more

  • #408 The Wasp That Brainwashed the Caterpillar

    Feb 10 2017

    This week, we look at the strange, curious, and sometimes amusing strategies creatures use to make it through the day. Guest host Jessie Yaros spends the hour with science writer and author Matt Simon talking about his new book "The Wasp That Brainwashed the Caterpillar: Evolution's Most Unbelievable Solutions to Life's Biggest Problems". The Science for the People team is excited to welcome Jessie Yaros, a new guest host, to our team. Jessie is a doctoral student in Neurobiology and Behavior i...more

  • #407 Voices Within

    Feb 03 2017

    This week we're thinking about how we think: the ways we talk to -- and with -- ourselves, why we do it at all, and what happens when some of us hear voices that aren't our own. We spend the hour with Charles Fernyhough, Professor of Psychology at Durham University, about his book "The Voices Within: The History and Science of How We Talk To Ourselves". More links of interest: Hearing The Voice, an interdisciplinary study of voice hearing. You can find their FAQ here. Intervoice: The Intern...more

  • #406 Running Low (Rebroadcast)

    Jan 27 2017

    This week, we're going back to a previous episode and looking across the Periodic Table and assessing the scarcity of modern society's essential elements. We're joined by Dr. Thomas Graedel, Director of the Center for Industrial Ecology at Yale University, to talk about the rare metals that play a role in our electronic devices. We'll speak to physics Professor Dr. Moses Hung-Wai Chan about our dwindling supply of helium. And we'll talk about the phosphorous that plays a critical role in mo...more

  • #405 STEM Pipeline

    Jan 20 2017

    This week we look at the current state of the STEM pipeline and what happens when people drip out. We speak with Paula Stephan, Professor of Economics at Georgia State University, about practicing "PhD contraception" in order to better match supply with realistic demand. We talk with Gary McDowell, Executive Director of Future of Research, about ways we might try to change the STEM process from the inside. And we speak with Melissa Vaught, a biochemist turned editor, about the realities of going...more

  • #404 Sex In The Sea

    Jan 13 2017

    This week we talk about sex... in the sea! Anika Hazra speaks with marine biologist Marah Hardt about her new book "Sex in the Sea: Our Intimate Connection with Sex-Changing Fish, Romantic Lobsters, Kinky Squid, and Other Salty Erotica of the Deep". We discuss the multitude of bizarre strategies marine organisms use to get it on, the obstacles they face as humans become increasingly intrusive on their sex lives, and how we can protect the integrity of marine reproduction.

  • #403 Indigenous DNA

    Jan 06 2017

    This week we take a closer look at the intersection of genetics, politics, identity, and hundreds of years of colonization. We speak with Kim TallBear, Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Peoples Technoscience and Environment and Associate Professor in the Faculty of Native Studies at the University of Alberta, about her book "Native American DNA: Tribal Belonging and the False Promise of Genetic Science". And we speak with Keolu Fox, a post doctoral fellow in the Division of Endocrinology and M...more

  • #402 Boozy Science (Rebroadcast)

    Dec 30 2016

    This week, we're looking back at a previous episode an discussing some science surrounding our favorite adult beverages. We'll revisit our interview with Dr. Charlie Bamforth, Professor of Malting and Brewing Sciences at UC Davis, about the chemistry of the brewing process. And we'll speak to researcher and winery owner Robert Hodgson, about his study exposing the shaky science of wine tasting.

  • #401 The Serengeti Rules

    Dec 23 2016

    This week we're exploring how life is regulated at very small scales -- down to the molecular level -- and how those rules and regulations also seem to apply when we zoom back out to look at environments and ecosystems across the planet. We spend the hour with author and Professor of Molecular Biology and Genetics at the University of Wisconsin Sean Carroll talking about his new book "The Serengeti Rules: The Quest to Discover How Life Works and Why It Matters".

  • #400 What Doesn't Kill You...

    Dec 16 2016

    This week we're discussing public perception of entomologists and their study organisms of choice: insects. We speak with Justin Schmidt, author of the new book "The Sting of the Wild", and an example of an entomologist who goes above and beyond for his passion for stinging insects, having created a sting pain index based on his personal experiences with them. He has received a lot of media attention as a result, and so we delve into what the public and other scientists think of his research, wh...more

  • #399 The Sugar Pill

    Dec 09 2016

    This week, we're taking on the science of the sugar pill. We're talking about the placebo effect, its potential benefits and its pitfalls. We speak with Erik Vance about his new book "Suggestible You: The Curious Science of your Brain's Ability to Deceive, Transform and Heal". And we'll talk with Kathryn Hall, a genetic epidemiologist at Brigham and Women's Hospital and Harvard Medical School, about why we experience the placebo effect, why some people are more open to suggestion than others, an...more

  • #398 Gifts For Nerds

    Dec 02 2016

    Once again, we're here to help you with all your nerd-specific holiday shopping with our annual gift guide for science lovers. We brought back Skepchick writer Mary Brock and science librarian John Dupuis to give us their top picks from their 2016 science reads. And we invited back Mad Art Lab's Courtney Caldwell and GeekWrapped's Simon Saval to recommend some science and geek themed gifts you won't find in a library. Visit our news section for the full book list with links and the full non-boo...more

  • #397 Risk Management

    Nov 25 2016

    This week we’re talking about risks and resources. We speak with Dr. Lianne Lefsrud, Assistant Professor of Engineering Safety and Risk Management in the Faculty of Engineering at the University of Alberta, about how engineers think about and evaluate risks, and her research into how language and conversations about resource development have changed over time. Then we'll talk with Dr. David Sauchyn, Research Professor at the Prairie Adaptation Research Collaborative at the University of Re...more

  • #396 Trench to Bedside

    Nov 18 2016

    This week we're taking on maggots, wounds, and diarrhea in an episode about medical problems that plague the military, so make sure your last meal is a few hours behind you before you tuck in your ear buds. We speak with Captain Mark Riddle, the director of the United States Military Diarrheal Disease Vaccine Research Program at the US Army Medical Research and Material Command, about new ways to prevent and treat travelers' diarrhea. And we talk with George Peck, a medical entomologist, about u...more

  • #395 Happy People (Rebroadcast)

    Nov 11 2016

    This week we're exploring what science can tell us about happiness. We'll speak to John Helliwell, Co-Director of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR) Programme on Social Interactions, Identity, and Well-Being, about the World Happiness Report, a global project that uses tools from economics, psychology, health statistics and more to study the happiness of people and nations. And we'll speak to journalist  Michael Booth about his book "The Almost Nearly Perfect Peo...more

  • #394 On the Origin of Bad Science

    Nov 04 2016

    This week we're talking about what bad science looks like, why good scientists with good intentions often use techniques of bad science in their work, and how we may be unintentionally selecting for bad science over good science in our culture. We speak with Michael Inzlicht, Professor of Psychology at the University of Toronto, about the replication crisis currently underway in the field of social psychology. And we talk with Paul Smaldino, Assistant Professor of Cognitive and Information Scien...more

  • #393 Check Your Facts

    Oct 28 2016

    This week we're sitting down with three experienced fact-checkers to better understand what the process of fact-checking looks like from the inside, and what the challenges are when news and politics collide. We speak with Brooke Borel, a contributing editor to Popular Science and author of the book "The Chicago Guide to Fact-Checking"; Michelle Ciarrocca, a researcher, reporter, and writer; and Dave Levitan, a science journalist and author of the upcoming new book "Not a Scientist: How Politici...more

  • #392 Venomous

    Oct 21 2016

    This week we're looking at some of the animals, insects, and creatures we fear the most and the venom that makes them so powerful. Biologist and science blogger Christie Wilcox returns to talk about her first book "Venomous: How Earth's Deadliest Creatures Mastered Biochemistry". And Jim Olson, a physician scientist and Director of Project Violet, tells us about "Tumor Paint", a fluorescent molecule that binds to solid tumors to help guide surgeons during surgeries, which was partially derived f...more

  • #391 Effective Altruism (Rebroadcast)

    Oct 14 2016

    This week, we're learning how science can boost the effectiveness of philanthropy. We'll talk to philosophy professor William MacAskill about his book "Doing Good Better: Effective Altruism and How You Can Make a Difference." And we'll speak to education researcher Brendan Rigby about the ethics and impact of "voluntourism."

  • #390 Decolonizing Colonization

    Oct 07 2016

    This week we're trying to wrap our head around our colonial history and the ideas of decolonization. We speak with Ryan McMahon, creator of the Indian & Cowboy podcast network, about what reconciliation and decolonization mean today and why they are necessary work still in front of us. And in a panel discussion from Skepchickcon at CONvergence 2016, panelists Emily Finke, Celia Yost, and Cassandra Phoenix think about how we can learn lessons from our colonial past so we don't repeat the same...more

  • #389 The Jazz of Physics

    Sep 30 2016

    This week we look at what science, music and art can learn from each other. Theoretical physicist and jazz musician Stephon Alexander, author of the new book "The Jazz of Physics: The Secret Link Between Music and the Structure of the Universe" talks about how science and art have frequently merged in his work and life. And Pamela Romero, a neuroscience major and Honduran painter at Emory University, talks about her "Elementally Latino" sculpture project and asks you to fill out her survey as pa...more

  • #388 Fish

    Sep 23 2016

    This week on Science for the People we have a trio of fishy experts helping us look at how fish are adapted to their — sometimes extreme — environments, and what their behaviour can tell us about their intelligence and experience. We speak to Kristin O'Brien, a zoologist at the University of Alaska, about how fish manage to survive the extreme cold of Arctic waters. We talk with Heidi Golden, a postdoctoral researcher from the University of Connecticut, about the Arctic grayling. And...more

  • #387 The Melting World (Rebroadcast)

    Sep 16 2016

    This week, we look back at a previous episode about how climate change is altering the face of the planet, and affecting the lives of the people who live here. Desiree Schell speaks to science writer and naturalist Christoper White, about his book "The Melting World: A Journey Across America's Vanishing Glaciers." And she's joined by sociology researcher Stephen Castles, to discuss the factors driving human migration, and how it could be affected by the shifting climate. Download "Foresight: Mig...more

  • #386 Humans Vs Robots

    Sep 09 2016

    This week we're airing a recorded panel, moderated by Desiree Schell, from the recent Skepchickcon track at CONvergence 2016 in Bloomington, Minnesota. Human spaceflight captures the imagination like nothing else, but robotic probes have explored the Solar System with relative ease. We'll weigh the costs and benefits of sending humans to other planets versus sending our robotic proxies. Panelists include Amy Shira Teitel, space flight historian and author; blogger and podcaster Jim Tigwell; astr...more

  • #385 Sociolinguistics

    Sep 02 2016

    This week we're learning about the field of sociolinguistics: what it is, why it's important, and what it can tell us about our culture and our society. University of Toronto Professor Sali Tagliamonte helps us better understand the field, how her research is done, and how language changes over time in cultural and regional groups. And Dr. LeAnn Brown talks about how language cues reveal -- or more often fail to reveal -- gender and sexual preference.

  • #384 Grunt

    Aug 26 2016

    This week we're tackling the science of the soldier and how to keep them fighting when difficult conditions -- and our own human bodies and brains -- get in the way. We spend the hour with best selling science author Mary Roach, talking about her latest book "Grunt: The Curious Science of Humans at War". This episode is hosted by Bethany Brookshire, science writer from Science News.

  • #383 The Atomic Era (Rebroadcast)

    Aug 19 2016

    This week, we're looking back at a previous episode and learning about the power and peril of the atom, with two books about women who were instrumental in helping us unlock its secrets. We're joined by Huffington Post editor Shelley Emling, to discuss her book "Marie Curie and Her Daughters: The Private Lives of Science's First Family." And we'll speak to author Denise Kiernan about her book, "The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women Who Helped Win World War II."

  • #382 Risk of Going Nowhere

    Aug 12 2016

    This week we're airing a recorded panel, moderated by Desiree Schell, from the recent Skepchickcon track at CONvergence 2016 in Bloomington, Minnesota. As a safety and headline driven culture, how will we explore dangerous, distant places that are inherently unsafe without losing the public will or disrespecting the lives of those who go? Panelists include Abra Staffin-Wiebe, speculative fiction author; blogger and podcaster Jim Tigwell; trivia show host Sarah Prentice; and Rebecca Watson, creat...more

  • #381 The Triumph of Seeds

    Aug 05 2016

    This week we're exploring the world of seeds: how they've become so successful, how they work, how humans depend on them, and what we still don't understand about them. We spend the hour with Thor Hanson, conservation biologist and award-winning author, about his book "The Triumph of Seeds: How Grains, Nuts, Kernels, Pulses, and Pips Conquered the Plant Kingdom and Shaped Human History".

  • #380 Yer A Wizard Harry

    Jul 29 2016

    Today we mashup the science of genetics with the world of Harry Potter to get a better handle on how genetics works, and to find out what the odds are when it comes to getting a Hogwarts invite. (We can dream, right?) Dr. Tina Saey, who covers the molecular biology beat at Science News, helps us understand how to make a wizard with a little genetics 101. And Dr. Julian Knight, Professor of genomic medicine at the Wellcome Trust Center for Human Genetics at the University of Oxford, talks about h...more

  • #379 A Special Hell (Rebroadcast)

    Jul 22 2016

    This week we're going back to a previous episode 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.

  • #378 Paris Climate Agreement

    Jul 15 2016

    This week we're reviewing the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference held in Paris and trying to better understand what happened at the conference and what the agreement means for the future. We speak to Tamsin Edwards, Lecturer in Environmental Sciences and writer of the "All Models Are Wrong" blog, and to Piers Forster, Director of the Priestley International Centre for Climate and Professor of Physical Climate Change at the University of Leeds, about the climate science and climate mod...more

  • #377 Hearing From The Humanities

    Jul 08 2016

    This week we're taking a tentative step into the humanities. We spoke with Jimena Canales, the Thomas M. Siebel Chair in the History of Science at the University of Illinois-UC, about her newest book "The Physicist and the Philosopher: Einstein, Bergson and the Debate That Changed Our Understanding of Time" to learn what happened when philosophy was pitted against physics in a historic intellectual battle. And we talked to Hannah McGregor and Marcelle Kosman, the scholarly hosts of the podcast "...more

  • #376 Technology, Work and The Future

    Jul 01 2016

    This week, we're thinking about how rapidly advancing technology will change our future, our work, and our well-being. We speak to Richard and Daniel Susskind about their book "The Future of Professions: How Technology Will Transform the Work of Human Experts" about the impacts technology may have on professional work. And Nicholas Agar comes on to talk about his book "The Sceptical Optimist" and the ways new technologies will affect our perceptions and well-being.

  • #375 Severed (Rebroadcast)

    Jun 24 2016

    This week we're going back at a previous episode, 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&nb...more

  • #374 The Ninth Planet

    Jun 17 2016

    This week on we're turning our attention to Pluto – what we used to think of as our ninth planet – and also to the mysterious new Planet 9 that might be orbiting on the outskirts of our solar system. We speak to Jeffery Moore, a research scientist at the NASA Ames Research Center, about what we've learned so far about Pluto from the New Horizons Mission. And we speak with Mike Brown, Professor of Planetary Astronomy at Caltech, about the search for Planet 9, and why we think there's ...more

  • #373 The Confidence Game

    Jun 10 2016

    This week we're looking at the science -- and art -- of the con, from huge Ponzi schemes to small-time frauds. We speak to Maria Konnikova about her new book The Confidence Game: Why We Fall for It... Every Time" on the psychology of the con and why we keep falling for the same old tricks. This episode is hosted by Bethany Brookshire, science writer from Science News.

  • #372 The Planet Remade

    Jun 03 2016

    This week we're taking a look at the controversial strategies and science of geoengineering. We'll speak to Oliver Morton, author of the new book "The Planet Remade: How Geoengineering Could Change the World", about how geoengineering might work, and the political and ethical questions surrounding it. We also chatted with Ryan Consell, builder of costumes and writer at Mad Art Lab, about the upcoming Skepchickcon track at CONvergence 2016.

  • #371 Meningitis

    May 27 2016

    This week we're talking about meningitis and legal issues surrounding parents and standards of care. We speak with three members of The Maiden Lab, a multidisciplinary group working on understanding the biology of bacterial pathogens, including meningitis. From their team we were joined by Martin Maiden, Professor of Molecular Epidemiology in the Department of Zoology at the University of Oxford; Charlene Rodrigues, Wellcome Trust Clinical Doctoral Fellow at the University of Oxford; and Kanny D...more

  • #370 Me, Myself, and Why (Rebroadcast)

    May 20 2016

    This week, we're revisiting a previous episode and exploring genetics, neuroscience, and psychology, to find out what makes every person - and personality - unique. We'll talk to science writer Jennifer Ouelette about her newest book "Me, Myself and Why: Searching for the Science of Self." And science writer Ed Yong takes a critical look at the hype surrounding the hormone oxytocin.

  • #369 Fraud and Forgery

    May 13 2016

    This week we're taking a look at two very different types of white collar crime -- financial fraud and painting forgery -- and how we use investigation and science to detect them. We'll speak to Jennifer Fiddian-Green, a partner at Grant Thornton and lead of their National Forensic and Dispute Resolution Advisory practice, about forensic accounting and the ways we try to discover fraud. And we'll talk with Dr. Jehane Ragai, Emeritus Professor of Chemistry with the American University in Cairo, a...more

  • #368 Beyond the Galaxy

    May 06 2016

    This week we're looking at astrophysics, zooming out to get a better idea of how universe works and what it might look like. Astrophysicist Ethan Siegel returns to talk about his new -- and first -- book "Beyond the Galaxy: How Humanity Looked Beyond Our Milky Way and Discovered the Entire Universe". And we'll speak with astrophysicist Katie Mack about the discovery of gravity waves, first predicted by Einstein. This episode is partially hosted by Bethany Brookshire, science writer from Science ...more

  • #367 Neurodiversity

    Apr 29 2016

    This week we're exploring our evolving understanding of neurodiversity and the different ways people think. We've invited award winning science writer Steve Silberman back to continue the conversation about autism, neurodiversity, and his book "Neurotribes: The Legacy of Autism and the Future of Neurodiversity."

  • #366 Self-Driving Cars

    Apr 22 2016

    This week on Science for the People, we’re talking with three guests about the technology challenges, possible repercussions, and ethical quandaries of self-driving cars. We'll speak with University of Waterloo Professor and Director of the Waterloo Autonomous Vehicles Laboratory Steven Waslander about the technological hurdles involved in creating autonomous road vehicles, and how these problems might be solved. Author and technologist Martin Ford will help us better understand how a worl...more

  • #365 Evolutionary Psychology

    Apr 15 2016

    This week, we're looking at the field of Evolutionary Psychology: what is it, how the research is done, what types of questions it might be good at answering, and times its ideas may have led us astray. We are joined by a panel of four: Maeve O'Donovan, Associate Professor and chair of Philosophy at Notre Dame of Maryland University; Kirk Honda, Chair of the Couple and Family Therapy Program at Antioch University Seattle, practicing psychotherapist, and host of the Psychology in Seattle podcast;...more

  • #364 Combat-Ready Kitchen

    Apr 08 2016

    This week, we're looking at how food -- and the containers it comes in -- have changed over time, and some of the factors that have influenced these changes. We'll speak with Anastacia Marx de Salcedo about her new book "Combat-Ready Kitchen: How the U.S. Military Shapes The Way You Eat" about the ways military needs have influenced the food we all eat. And we'll speak with statistician Patrick McKnight about the BPA controversy, and how statistics can be used and misused in scientific studies.

  • #363 Falling Into The Fire (Rebroadcast)

    Apr 01 2016

    This week, we're looking back at a previous episode to get a gripping first person account of the challenges involved in mental health diagnosis and treatment. We'll spend the hour with Dr. Christine Montross, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, and the Director of Counseling Resources at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, to talk about her book "Falling Into the Fire: A Psychiatrist's Encounters with the Mind in Crisis."

  • #362 Roadkill

    Mar 25 2016

    This week we're looking at the surprisingly robust science research that can be done with animals that have died along our highways. We'll speak with Sarah Perkins, an ecologist at Cardiff University in Wales, about the Project Splatter, a citizen science project tracking roadkill on UK roads. And we'll speak with Kyle Elliott, an ecologist at McGill University in Montréal about his work studying the toxicology of birds of prey in urban environments. This episode is hosted by Bethany Bro...more

  • #361 Too Hot To Handle

    Mar 18 2016

    This week we're talking about sex education: why we started teaching it in schools in the first place, how it's changed over the years, and what it might – or should – look like in the future. We'll speak with Jonathan Zimmerman, professor of education and history at New York University, about his new book "Too Hot to Handle: A Global History of Sex Education". And we'll speak with sex advice columnist, activist, and author Dan Savage about what sex education in schools should includ...more

  • #360 Medical Marijuana

    Mar 11 2016

    This week, we're taking a closer look at the medical marijuana controversy. How effective is medical marijuana and for what conditions is it a suitable treatment? In our attempt to separate evidence from anecdote we're joined by a panel of three: Dr. David Casarett, a palliative care physician and author of the book "Stoned: A Doctor's Case for Medical Marijuana"; Dr. Robert Wolff, a systematic reviewer for Kleijnen Systematic Reviews and coauthor of a recent systematic review to assess benefits...more

  • #359 In The Courtroom

    Mar 04 2016

    This week, we're going inside the courtroom to try and understand how evidence and witness testimony is presented, and how courtroom strategy can affect a trial's outcome. We spend the hour with Colin Miller, a Professor of Law at the University of South Carolina School of Law, creator of the EvidenceProf Blog, and a co-host of the Undisclosed Podcast.

  • #358 Zika

    Feb 26 2016

    This week we're focusing in on the Zika virus and the current outbreak to better understand what we know about how its spreading and what the risks are. Meghan Rosen, a staff writer from Science News who has been following the outbreak, talks about where the virus came from, what we know about why it's spreading, and its connections with microcephaly. Epidemiologist and microbiologist Tara Smith returns to talk us through the current collection of conspiracy theories that have arisen, and about ...more

  • #357 The Brain Electric

    Feb 19 2016

    This week, we're looking at the progress we've made toward connecting our minds with machines. We talk with journalist Malcolm Gay about the challenge of creating prosthetics, how close we are to controlling them with our thoughts alone, and his new book "The Brain Electric: The Dramatic High-Tech Race to Merge Minds and Machines". We also speak to artist and blogger Amy Davis Roth about Mad Art Cast, a podcast about the intersection of art and science. Read the companion post on Skepchick.

  • #356 Insects En Masse

    Feb 12 2016

    This week we're looking at two types of insects that have made their homes among us in our cities, and are almost always found in large groups and colonies. We'll speak with Dr. Corrie Moreau, an Associate Professor/Curate at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, about the colony behaviors of ants. And we'll talk with Richard Schweid, a journalist and documentary reporter, about his book The Cockroach Papers: A Compendium of History and Lore".

  • #355 Superstorm (Rebroadcast)

    Feb 05 2016

    This week, we're revisiting a previous episode, 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 Ce...more

  • #354 HIV and AIDS: Updated and Revisited

    Jan 29 2016

    This week, we've brought together a panel of experts to talk about the history of HIV/AIDS, and get an update on the current science, ongoing research, and medical treatments. Joining us on the panel are Salim Abdool Karim, clinical infectious diseases epidemiologist, Jonathan Engel, author of "The Epidemic: A History of AIDS", Dázon Dixon Diallo, founder of SisterLove, Inc, the first women’s HIV/AIDS and Reproductive Justice organization in the southeastern United States, and Terry...more

  • #353 Scream

    Jan 22 2016

    This week we're talking about fear: how it works, what it does to our bodies and brains, and why we sometimes seek it out. We'll spend the hour with Margee Kerr – a sociologist, fear researcher, and diehard haunted house fan – talking about her new book "Scream: Chilling Adventures in the Science of Fear".

  • #352 Good Thinking

    Jan 15 2016

    This week, we're trying to better understand our human brain, it's quirky ways and unexpected processes, so we can use it better in daily life. We'll speak with Guy Harrison, author of "Good Thinking: What You Need to Know to be Smarter, Safer, Wealthier, and Wiser", about how to cope with our brain's built-in pitfalls. And we'll speak to Ben Lillie about The Story Collider, a podcast that blends science and storytelling to show how science touches everyone, scientist and layperson alike.

  • #351 Contraception

    Jan 08 2016

    This week we're taking a closer look at our current – and potential future – contraceptive methods. We'll speak with Beth Sundstrom and Andrea DeMaria, Co-Directors of the Women's Health Research Team at the College of Charleston, about why the pill is still our go-to birth control choice when we have long acting reversible contraception methods like the IUD and the implant available for women. And we'll talk with Elaine Lissner, Executive Director of the Parsemus Foundation, ab...more

  • #350 Science In Wonderland

    Jan 01 2016

    This week, we're learning about imaginative ways to teach science to children, and how to use science as a tool for parenting. We'll hear about fanciful tales written to explain scientific concepts, with Cambridge University science historian Melanie Keene, author of "Science in Wonderland: The Scientific Fairy Tales of Victorian Britain." And we'll talk to author/illustrator Lynn Brunelle about her book "Mama Gone Geek: Calling On My Inner Science Nerd to Help Navigate the Ups and Downs of...more

  • #349 Getting Away With Murder (REBROADCAST)

    Dec 25 2015

    This week, we're looking back to a fan favourite, "Getting Away With Murder," a panel discussion about forensic science and pop culture recorded live at CONvergence 2014. Panelists Amanda Leinbaugh, Emily Finke, Bug Girl Gwen Pearson, and Raychelle "Dr. Rubidium" Burks discuss the Hollywood treatment of forensic investigations, and the way crime scene security, DNA analysis, and pattern evidence work in the real world.

  • #348 Artificial Intelligence

    Dec 18 2015

    This week, we're talking about artificial intelligence, and how thinking machines are fitting into – and changing – our lives and cultures. Should we be concerned or excited about the future of artificial intelligence? To try and find out, we're joined by a panel of four: Kerstin Dautenhahn, Professor of Artificial Intelligence at the University of Hertfordshire; Raymond Mooney, Director of the University of Texas Artificial Intelligence Lab; Despina Kakoudaki, Director of the H...more

  • #347 Where Do Camels Belong?

    Dec 11 2015

    This week, we're discussing ecosystems, biodiversity, and whether or not "invasive" outside species are really as bad as they're made out to be. We'll spend the hour speaking to Dr. Ken Thompson, lecturer in the Department of Animal and Plant Sciences at the University of Sheffield, about his book "Where Do Camels Belong? Why Invasive Species Aren't All Bad." Read the companion post on Skepchick.

  • #346 Gift Giving For Nerds

    Dec 04 2015

    Once again, we're here to help you with all your nerdy holiday shopping with our annual gift guide for science lovers. We brought in science librarian John Dupuis and Skepchick book club columnist Mary Brock who give us their top picks from 2015 that will make great additions to any nerd's library. And -- just to shake things up this year -- we spend the second half of the show with GeekWrapped's Simon Saval and Mad Art Lab's Courtney Caldwell, who give their recommendations for science-themed g...more

  • #344 Effective Altruism

    Nov 20 2015

    This week, we're learning how science can boost the effectiveness of philanthropy. We'll talk to philosophy professor William MacAskill about his book "Doing Good Better: Effective Altruism and How You Can Make a Difference." And we'll speak to education researcher Brendan Rigby about the ethics and impact of "voluntourism."

  • #343 Conversations About Death

    Nov 13 2015

    This week we're exploring the science that informs our understanding of death and dying. We'll talk to Simon Davis about Post Mortem, his VICE column that explores death and other morbid topics. And analytical chemist Raychelle Burks returns to share strategies and techniques employed by forensic scientists.

  • #342 Amazons (Rebroadcast)

    Nov 06 2015

    This week we're learning how science can shed light on the stories told by our ancestors. We're joined by folklorist and science historian Adrienne Mayor, author of "The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women across the Ancient World," to learn what archaeology can tell us about legendary warrior women in cultures from around the world. And we'll talk to anthropologist John Hawks to learn how researchers gain insights from ancient human remains.

  • #341 Psychedelic Treatments

    Oct 30 2015

    This week, we're talking about powerful mind-altering substances, and their potential to help treat serious mental and physical illness. We'll spend the hour with Brad Burge, Director of Communications and Marketing at Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies (MAPS), talking about their research and advocacy around the medical, legal, and cultural context of the therapeutic use of psychedelics.

  • #340 Mandatory Vaccination

    Oct 23 2015

    This week, we're talking about disease prevention, public health, and whether or not some types of vaccinations should be mandatory. We'll spend the hour in a panel discussion with Barry Bloom, Harvard University's Distinguished Service Professor of the Department of Immunology and Infectious Diseases, University of Toronto public health ethicist Alison Thompson, pediatrician and University of Pennsylvania vaccinology professor Paul Offit, and Nicholas Little, ...more

  • #339 Citizen Science

    Oct 16 2015

    This week we're learning about distributed science projects that get the public involved in testing hypotheses and crunching data. We're joined by physicist Eric Donovan to talk about the Auroral Zone, a website that crowdsources the classification of auroras in Earth's atmosphere. We'll talk to molecular biologist Gabriel Licina of Science for the Masses about testing eyedrops to enhance night vision. Geography and environmental studies professor Robert McLeman introduces us to NatureWatch...more

  • #338 Science and the Canadian Federal Election

    Oct 09 2015

    This week, we're talking about politics, and the prospects for pro-science politicians, parties and voters in Canada. We'll spend the hour with panelists Katie Gibbs, Executive Director of Evidence for Democracy, science librarian John Dupuis, journalist Mike De Souza, and former Canadian government scientist Steven Campana, for an in-depth discussion about the treatment of science by the current Canadian government, and what's at stake for science in the upcoming federal election.

  • #337 Martians (REBROADCAST)

    Oct 02 2015

    This week we're celebrating exciting science and entertainment focused on Mars, by listening back to two interviews about the fascinating red planet. We're joined by "lifelong space nerd" Andy Weir, to talk about "The Martian," his gripping debut novel that was recently adapted into a big-budget movie. And we're joined by journalist Elmo Keep, to talk about her article on Mars One, a nonprofit that claims to be planning a reality show about a one-way trip to establish a Martian colony.

  • #336 Lovelace and Babbage

    Sep 25 2015

    This week we're learning about a pair of 19th-century geniuses, and the friendship that gave rise to the era of modern computers. We'll speak to artist and animator Sydney Padua about her graphic novel "The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage: The (Mostly) True Story of the First Computer." And we'll talk to Suw Charman-Anderson, founder of Ada Lovelace Day, an international celebration of the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering and math.

  • #335 Fact Checking Elections

    Sep 18 2015

    This week we're back at the intersection of science and politics, comparing economic data to partisan talking points and polling predictions to election results. We'll talk to Jim Stanford, economist at Unifor, about his report "Rhetoric & Reality: Evaluating Canada’s Economic Record Under the Harper Government." And we'll speak to pollster and consultant Donna Dasko about the science and art of polling in Canadian federal elections.

  • #334 Eye of the Beholder

    Sep 11 2015

    This week, we're learning about the history of optics, and how our perception of the world and how we see it underwent a radical transformation in 17th-century Holland. We'll spend the hour with historian, philosopher, and science writer Laura J. Snyder, talking about her book "Eye of the Beholder: Johannes Vermeer, Antoni Van Leeuwenhoek and the Reinvention of Seeing." Science for the People is now on Patreon, and is accepting your support and donations! Visit the Patreon page to get more ...more

  • #333 How to Clone a Mammoth

    Sep 04 2015

    This week we're learning about genetics research that could help preserve existing species, and might let us bring back others that have gone extinct. We'll talk to Beth Shapiro, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology at the University of California, Santa Cruz about her book "How to Clone a Mammoth: The Science of De-Extinction." And we'll speak to biologist Richard Frankham about the use of "genetic rescue" to keep isolated animal populations from becoming dangerously inb...more

  • #332 Coffee Table Science

    Aug 28 2015

    This week, we'll meet the authors of three big books that use stunning images to tell intriguing stories about the history of science. We'll discuss evolution and the building of the fossil record with invertebrate palaeontologist Paul Taylor, author of "A History of Life in 100 Fossils". Archivist Julie Halls shares stories of unheralded ingenuity from her book "Inventions that Didn't Change the World." And we'll learn about attempts to map the world in three dimensions from independe...more

  • #331 The Birth of The Pill (REBROADCAST)

    Aug 21 2015

    This week we're listening back to an episode exploring the intersection of science, society and sex, and the origin story of the birth control pill. We'll speak to author Jonathan Eig about his book "The Birth of the Pill: How Four Crusaders Reinvented Sex and Launched a Revolution." And writer Rose Eveleth returns to talk about the history and design of the vaginal speculum.

  • #330 Animal Weapons

    Aug 14 2015

    This week, we're talking about weapons: both the ones that evolve in nature, and those created by humanity. We'll talk about the arms races that spur the development of horns and claws, warships and nuclear weapons, with Doug Emlen, Professor in the Division of Biological Sciences at the University of Montana, and author of "Animal Weapons: The Evolution of Battle." Don't forget to fill out our Listener Feedback Survey!

  • #329 Coal Wars

    Aug 07 2015

    This week we're learning more about the fossil fuel that powered humanity's first industrial age, and helped set us on a course for a looming climate crisis. We'll speak to Richard Martin, energy editor at the MIT Technology Review, about his book "Coal Wars: The Future of Energy and the Fate of the Planet." And we'll explore the environmental impact of coal with Jeff Deyette, assistant director of energy research in the Climate and Energy program at the Union of Concerned Scientists.

  • #328 Sex, Drugs and Rock 'N' Roll

    Jul 31 2015

    This week we're looking at the science - and surprising sophistication - of the instincts we serve in the pursuit of pleasure. We're joined by science writer and journalist Zoe Cormier to talk about her book "Sex, Drugs and Rock n’ Roll: The Science of Hedonism and the Hedonism of Science." And we'll indulge our passion for nerdy gift giving with Simon Saval, co-founder of GeekWrapped.

  • #327 Research, Regulation, and Ethics

    Jul 24 2015

    This week we're learning about the regulatory frameworks that try to balance scientific progress with the safety of research subjects. We'll speak to Holly Fernandez Lynch and I. Glenn Cohen of the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard Law School about their book "Human Subjects Research Regulation: Perspectives on the Future." And we'll speak to health journalist and editor Hilda Bastian about research, journalism, ethics and "The Chocolate Hoax....more

  • #326 Bruno Pontecorvo

    Jul 17 2015

    This week, we're digging into a tale of intrigue that may have changed the course of physics research in the 20th century. We'll spend the hour with Frank Close, Professor of Physics at the University of Oxford and Fellow of Exeter College, Oxford, talking about his book "Half-Life: The Divided Life of Bruno Pontecorvo, Physicist or Spy." We'll learn about Pontecorvo's groundbreaking career in particle physics, his defection to the Soviet Union, and the accusations that he tr...more

  • #325 Happy People

    Jul 10 2015

    This week we're exploring what science can tell us about happiness. We'll speak to John Helliwell, Co-Director of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR) Programme on Social Interactions, Identity, and Well-Being, about the World Happiness Report, a global project that uses tools from economics, psychology, health statistics and more to study the happiness of people and nations. And we'll speak to journalist  Michael Booth about his book "The Almost Nearly Perfect Peo...more

  • #324 High Price (REBROADCAST)

    Jul 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.

  • #323 Alzheimer's

    Jun 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."

  • #322 Biohacking

    Jun 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.

  • #321 Galileo's Middle Finger

    Jun 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." 

  • #320 Dataclysm

    Jun 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...more

  • #319 A Special Hell

    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.

  • #318 Come As You Are

    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.

  • #317 Secure Communications

    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.

  • #316 Sports Science

    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.

  • #315 Pests in the City

    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.

  • #314 Severed

    Apr 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.

  • #313 Heavy Metal Birds

    Apr 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.

  • #312 Impossible Space

    Apr 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.

  • #311 On Intelligence

    Apr 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.

  • #310 Circumcision

    Mar 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 Fel...more

  • #309 Celebrity and Science

    Mar 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.

  • #308 Women in STEM

    Mar 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,&n...more

  • #307 Pavlov

    Mar 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." 

  • #306 Superstorm

    Feb 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.

  • #305 Struck By Genius

    Feb 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.

  • #304 Alan Turing

    Feb 13 2015

    This week, we're learning more about the groundbreaking work and too-short life of Alan Turing, the brilliant mathematician, codebreaker and philosopher who laid the groundwork for the modern age of computing. We'll spend the hour with Oxford University Senior Research Fellow Andrew Hodges, talking about his book "Alan Turing: The Enigma."

  • #303 Shocked

    Feb 06 2015

    This week we're looking at medical advances that are blurring the lines between life and death. We're joined by physician and researcher Dr. David Casarett, to talk about his book "Shocked: Adventures in Bringing Back the Recently Dead." And we'll talk to Michael Kruse, founder of Bad Science Watch, about the history and application of CPR.

  • #302 A Sting in the Tale

    Jan 30 2015

    This week we're learning about the fascinating lives of bees, and the important role they play in our global ecosystem. We'll speak to University of Sussex biology professor Dave Goulson about his book "A Sting in the Tale: My Adventures with Bumblebees." And we'll talk to Jocelyn Crocker, founding member of YEG Bees, about the rewards and challenges of urban beekeeping. Update: A listener of ours sent in some information about the "science says bees can't fly" myth, which he let us p...more

  • #301 The Birth of The Pill

    Jan 23 2015

    This week we're exploring the intersection of science, society and sex, and the origin story of the birth control pill. We'll speak to author Jonathan Eig about his book "The Birth of the Pill: How Four Crusaders Reinvented Sex and Launched a Revolution." And writer Rose Eveleth returns to talk about the history and design of the vaginal speculum.

  • #300 Private Sector Space

    Jan 16 2015

    This week we're learning how private enterprise has jumped in to fill the gap left by shrinking government budgets for space exploration. We're joined by journalist Elmo Keep, to talk about her article on Mars One, a nonprofit planning to make a reality show out of a one-way trip to colonize the red planet.  And we'll get an update on the state of the for-profit space industry with Space News Senior Editor Jeff Foust.

  • #299 Falling Into The Fire

    Jan 09 2015

    This week, we get a gripping first person account of the challenges involved in mental health diagnosis and treatment. We'll spend the hour with Dr. Christine Montross, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Human Behavior, and the Director of Counseling Resources at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University, to talk about her book "Falling Into the Fire: A Psychiatrist's Encounters with the Mind in Crisis."

  • #298 Technocreep

    Jan 02 2015

    This week, we're learning about the ever-expanding streams of our personal information being collected by businesses and governments. We'll talk to author and futurist Tom Keenan about his book "Technocreep: the Surrender of Privacy and the Capitalization of Intimacy." And security expert Bruce Schneier returns to talk about the use and misuse of passwords to safeguard our most important data.

  • #297 Falling Upwards REBROADCAST

    Dec 26 2014

    This week, we're revisiting an epsiode about the science and history of lighter-than-air flight. We'll spend the hour with biographer and science writer Richard Holmes, to talk about his book "Falling Upwards: How We Took to the Air." We'll talk about the technology of 19th century ballooning, and the pioneering men and women who took to the skies and changed our view of the world. And we'll share a list of science-based charities to help you spread evidence-based holiday cheer.

  • #296 Amazons

    Dec 19 2014

    This week we're learning how science can shed light on the stories told by our ancestors. We're joined by folklorist and science historian Adrienne Mayor, author of "The Amazons: Lives and Legends of Warrior Women across the Ancient World," to learn what archaeology can tell us about legendary warrior women in cultures from around the world. And we'll talk to anthropologist John Hawks to learn how researchers gain insights from ancient human remains.

  • #295 Science Up Your Holidays 2014

    Dec 12 2014

    This week, we're observing our annual holiday tradition, helping you find gifts for the science lovers on your list. We'll hear from some of our favorite past guests as they share their most-treasured science books from 2014, as well as classics to help fill out anyone’s science library. And we'll speak to writer/illustrator James Lu Dunbar about "The Universe Verse," a scientifically-accurate rhyming comic book about the origins of the universe. Visit our blog for more information a...more

  • #294 Survival Doc

    Dec 05 2014

    This week, we’re learning about the limits of the human body, and the essential science of survival. We'll talk to Dr. James Hubbard, creator of TheSurvivalDoctor.com, about emergency measures to take when a disaster has cut off your access to medical care. And Dr. Rob Tarzwell of One Minute Medical School returns to explain what to do - and not do - when you're stranded in the wilderness.

  • #293 The Edge of the Sky

    Nov 28 2014

    This week we're talking about the mindbending science trying to understand the inner workings of the Universe. Astrophysicist Ethan Siegel returns to discuss the BICEP2 experiment, and its search for the fingerprints of cosmic inflation. And we'll talk to theoretical cosmologist Roberto Trotta about his book "The Edge of the Sky: All You Need to Know about the All-There-Is," which explains the history and concepts of cosmology using the 1,000 most common words in the English language.

  • #292 The Psychopath Whisperer

    Nov 21 2014

    This week on Science for the People, we’re looking at the science of psychopathy. We’ll spend the hour learning about social science research, neuroimaging and behavioral therapies with Kent Kiehl, neuroscience researcher, lecturer and author of "The Psychopath Whisperer: The Science of Those Without Conscience." For more information on screenings of the "Silence of the Labs" documentary, visit Evidence for Democracy.

  • #291 The One About Ebola

    Nov 14 2014

    This week, we're talking about Ebola: how it works, how it spreads, and how we're trying to stop it. We'll talk to infectious disease epidemiologist, professor and blogger Tara C. Smith about how Ebola is being handled here in North America, and perceptions surrounding the Ebola outbreak. We'll also speak with physician Dr. Tim Jagatic from Doctors Without Borders Canada and discuss the situation on the ground in Africa, and we'll speak to immunology professor Vincent Racaniello about the race t...more

  • #290 Understanding Neuroscience

    Nov 07 2014

    This week we're looking at the ways we try to understand the inner workings of the brain. We'll talk to University College London researcher Cliodhna O'Connor about patterns in the way the public interprets neuroscience news. And we'll ask Duncan Astle, Program Leader at the MRC Cognition and Brain Sciences Unit, about "neuromyths," popular misconceptions about the way the brain functions, and the strengths and weaknesses of modern brain imaging techniques.

  • #289 Bodies Everywhere

    Oct 31 2014

    This week we're looking at the morbid and fascinating history of our attempts to grapple with disease and death. We're joined by medical historian Richard Barnett to talk about his book "The Sick Rose: Disease and the Art of Medical Illustration." And we'll speak to mortician and blogger Caitlin Doughty about her new book "Smoke Gets In Your Eyes: And Other Lessons from the Crematory", and her ongoing YouTube series "Ask a Mortician", about the history, science and cultural attitudes attach...more

  • #288 Science and Shakespeare

    Oct 24 2014

    This week we're looking at the way science influenced the work of the greatest author in English, and what modern scholars think about its origins. We're joined by journalist and author Dan Falk, to talk about his book "The Science of Shakespeare: A New Look at the Playwright's Universe." And we'll speak to Shakespeare scholar and blogger Stanley Wells, for his perspective on the question of who actually wrote Shakespeare's works.

  • #287 Troublesome Inheritance

    Oct 17 2014

    This week, we're looking at the intersection of race, history and genetics in science writer Nicholas Wade's 2014 book "A Troublesome Inheritance: Genes, Race and Human History." DNA researcher Jennifer Raff and science journalist David Dobbs share their critiques of the claim that differences between genetically distinct "races" are responsible for global divergence in cultural and political structures. And blogger Scicurious walks us through the (delicious) basics of the sc...more

  • #286 An Epidemic of Rumors (REBROADCAST)

    Oct 10 2014

    This week, we're revisiting an episode about the power of stories and innuendo to shape the public perception of science. We'll speak to author Jon Lee about his book "An Epidemic of Rumors: How Stories Shape Our Perceptions of Disease." And we're joined by Dr. Paul A. Offit, Chief of the Division of Infectious Diseases and the Director of the Vaccine Education Center at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, to get the scientific perspective of the safety and effectivenes...more

  • #285 High Price

    Oct 03 2014

    This week we're looking at 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.

  • #284 Edible

    Sep 26 2014

    This week, we're looking at the environmental impact of foods we eat, and others that we should. We'll speak to Daniella Martin, host of the insect cooking/travel show "Girl Meets Bug," about her book "Edible: An Adventure into the World of Eating Insects and the Last Great Hope to Save the Planet." And we'll talk about the environmental effects of salmon farming with Peter Bridson, Aquaculture Research Manager for the Seafood Watch program at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

  • #283 Mental Illness Myths

    Sep 19 2014

    This week, we're listening to "Mental Illness Myths," a panel discussion about public perceptions of mental health  at CONvergence 2014. Panelists Megan Press, Miri Mogilevsky, Julia Burke and Olivia James discuss misconceptions about diagnosis, treatment and symptoms, and the harm that stigma does to individuals affected by mental illness.

  • #282 Cities of the Future

    Sep 12 2014

    This week, we're listening to "Cities of The Future," a panel discussion about the future of human living spaces recorded live at CONvergence 2014. Panelists Jamie Bernstein, Ryan Consell and Shawn Lawrence Otto discuss how cities can adapt to accommodate the changing demographics, economics, and environment of a warming planet.

  • #281 Getting Away With Murder

    Sep 05 2014

    This week, we're listening to "Getting Away With Murder," a panel discussion about forensic science and pop culture recorded live at CONvergence 2014. Panelists Amanda Leinbaugh, Emily Finke, Bug Girl Gwen Pearson, and Raychelle "Dr. Rubidium" Burks discuss the Hollywood treatment of forensic investigations, and the way crime scene security, DNA analysis, and pattern evidence work in the real world.

  • #280 Hypatia and Women in STEM (REBROADCAST)

    Aug 29 2014

    This week, we're revisiting an episode looking back in history and to the modern day, to discuss women who defend and advance science and learning. We speak to author Faith Justice, about her book "Hypatia: Her Life and Times," which examines the literary myths and primary sources on the life of the famous philosopher. And we're joined by Professor Zahra Hazari, to discuss her work on gender issues in science education.

  • #279 Starlight Detectives

    Aug 22 2014

    This week, we're exploring the night sky and the history of astronomy. Physics professor Alan Hirshfeld joins us to talk about his book "Starlight Detectives: How Astronomers, Inventors, and Eccentrics Discovered the Modern Universe." And we'll speak to stargazer Chris Beckett about amateur astronomy, and his work with the Royal Astronomical Society of Canada.

  • #278 Garden of Marvels

    Aug 15 2014

    This week we're learning about botany and the colorful science of gardening. Author Ruth Kassinger joins us to discuss her book "A Garden of Marvels: How We Discovered that Flowers Have Sex, Leaves Eat Air, and Other Secrets of the Way Plants Work." And we'll speak to NASA researcher Gioia Massa about her work to solve the technical challenges of gardening in space. 

  • #277 Science and Politics

    Aug 08 2014

    This week we're talking about science and evidence in the political process. We'll talk to Dan Kahan, Professor of Law and Professor of Psychology at Yale Law School, about the Cultural Cognition Project, which studies group values and perceptions of risk in science communication. We'll speak to Shane Trimmer, Executive Director of Franklin's List, about their work to elect pro-science candidates. And biologist Katie Gibbs returns with an update on Evidence for Democracy, which ad...more

  • #276 Game Change

    Aug 01 2014

    This week we're looking at the math and science of business decisions. We'll speak to David McAdams, Duke University Professor of Business Administration and Economics, about his book "Game-Changer: Game Theory and the Art of Transforming Strategic Situations." And we'll talk to Vassar College Economics Professor Benjamin Ho about his economic analysis of apologies.

  • #275 Perv (REBROADCAST)

    Jul 25 2014

    This week, we're listening back to a discussion of taboo sexual practices, and whether they're really as unusual as we think. Psychologist and author Jesse Bering talks about his book, "Perv: The Sexual Deviant in All of Us." And we'll speak to Nicole Prause, Principal Investigator at UCLA's Sexual Psychophysiology and Affective Neuroscience (SPAN) Laboratory, on her neurological perspective that raises doubts about self-reported sex addiction.

  • #274 Coffee and Cigarettes

    Jul 18 2014

    This week we're learning about some of the legal chemicals that regulate the moods of millions of people every day. Journalist Murray Carpenter joins us to talk about his book "Caffeinated - How Our Daily Habit Helps, Hurts and Hooks Us." And science blogger Dr. David Gorski explains the state of research on the effects of e-cigarettes.

  • #273 The V-Word

    Jul 11 2014

    This week, we're looking at the social and biological science of female sex organs. We'll talk to Dr. Anthony Atala, director of the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center Institute for Regenerative Medicine, about the creation and use of lab-grown vaginas. Biology professor Marie Herberstein exposes the bias against female genitalia in scientific studies. And science writer Emily Anthes tells us about the history and promising future of female condoms. 

  • #272 Science and the Death Penalty

    Jul 04 2014

    This week, we're looking at the science of the ultimate criminal punishment. Pharmacologist and science writer David Kroll joins us to discuss the chemistry of the drugs used in lethal injections. We'll talk to law professor Samuel Gross, editor of the National Registry of Exonerations, about the rates of false convictions in death penalty cases. And we'll speak to Johns Hopkins University psychiatrist Dr. James Harris about the complex issues at the intersection of capital punishment and i...more

  • #271 Mother Nature is Trying to Kill You

    Jun 27 2014

    This week, we're learning how deadly and delightful our planet and its ecosystem can be. We're joined by biologist Dan Riskin, co-host of Discovery Canada's Daily Planet, to talk about his book "Mother Nature Is Trying to Kill You: a Lively Tour Through the Dark Side of the Natural World." And we'll talk to astronomer and author Phil Plait about Science Getaways, his company that offers educational vacation experiences for science lovers.

  • #270 Environmental Debt

    Jun 20 2014

    This week, we're looking at how worldwide environmental challenges interact with our increasingly global economy. We'll speak to Amy Larkin, founder of Nature Means Business, about her book "Environmental Debt: The Hidden Costs of a Changing Global Economy." Journalist Ken Silverstein joins us to explain the way climate change is dividing the insurance and energy industries. And we'll talk to Arjen Hoekstra, professor of Water Management at the University of Twente, about the effects o...more

  • #269 Sonic Wonderland

    Jun 13 2014

    This week, we're exploring the science of sound and hearing. We'll talk to Trevor Cox, Professor of Acoustic Engineering at the University of Salford, about his book "Sonic Wonderland: A Scientific Odyssey of Sound." And we'll speak to Andrew Wise, Senior Research Fellow at Bionics Institute, about a gene therapy technique to enhance the function of cochlear implants.