2020 SCIENCE

Personal notes and articles on emerging technologies, responsible innovation, science communication and the University of Michigan Risk Science Center, from Center Director Andrew Maynard.

Catch up with the latest notes  Browse longer articles

LATEST ARTICLES

Utibe Effiong speaking at the 2014 Aspen Ideas Festival
While the world watches Ebola, Meningitis continues to kill in ...

“This year alone, there have been 17,000 cases of meningitis in Nigeria, with nearly 1,000 deaths”. It’s a statement that jumped out ...

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Advanced Materials – What’s the big deal?

Why are materials important? How do they limit what we can achieve? And what can we do to change this?  (Check ...

Nano silver to be used to treat Ebola patients
Is using nano silver to treat Ebola misguided?

On Thursday this week, the Wall Street Journal reported that Ebola victims in Nigeria’s commercial capital Lagos will receive Nano Silver in ...

Maynard 140816 Maker health 750x400
Color my Poop Beautiful – and other tales of DIY Health

(Update: Link to PDF of presentation added) Is it possible – just possible – that you have a nugget of ...


Andrew Maynard, science communication
Confessions of a Scientist Communicator

I consider myself to be pretty self-aware.  It’s an illusion of course, but one I am usually blissfully ignorant of. ...

Hacking health, maker movement and public health
Hacking the world, public health style

What has the Maker Movement got to do with public health? Quite a lot as it turns out, as I ...

Brian Zikmund-Fisher talk's to NPRs Robert Siegel about risk and feelings
When risk gets personal

When you’re facing a life or death situation, what do the odds mean – to you personally?  As Brian Zikmund-Fisher ...

Laboratory safety
The gathering storm of lab safety

Pathogen safety in federal labs Over the past few weeks, revelations of potentially dangerous errors in US federal labs handling pathogens have placed ...




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NOTES AND THOUGHTS …


The human side of vaccines and risk

August 31, 2014

Leading up to the new NOVA Special on vaccines (Vaccines - Calling The Shots, airing September 10th, 9:00 PM on PBS), the University of Michigan Risk Science Center be reposting a series of pieces that tackle some of the issues around vaccination, acceptance, anxiety and risk. Each week day between September 2 and September ...

World Economic Forum Technology Pioneers 2015 Announced

August 26, 2014

As a member of the selection committee for the World Economic Forum’s Technology Pioneers, it’s always exciting to see which companies made the bar each year. This year’s Technology Pioneers have just been announced.  They represent 24 of the world’s most innovative and pioneering technology companies. The tech pioneers for 2015 include companies that ...

To Engineer is Human

August 26, 2014

I’ve just had my attention drawn to this inspiring 2 minute video on engineering from University of Michigan PhD student Barry Belmont:   The video’s part of the National Academy of Engineering Engineering for You Video Contest. What I like about it is the way it connects advances in engineering to our needs, hopes and ...

Vaccines, Calling the Shots – New NOVA Special, September 10th

August 23, 2014

NOVA has a one hour special on child vaccination coming out on September 10th, which is sure to stimulate some heated conversation around the topic.  It also features heavily University of Michigan School of Public Health decision-analysis expert Brian Zikmund-Fisher – who also leads the Risk Science Center Risk Communication ...

Is early development exposure to lead linked to obesity later in life?

August 8, 2014

A few of my colleagues in the University of Michigan Environmental Health Sciences Department have just published an interesting paper linking lead exposure to obesity in mice (Faulk et al. Perinatal Lead (Pb) Exposure Results in Sex-Specific Effects on Food Intake, Fat, Weight, and Insulin Response across the Murine Life-Course PLOS One. DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0104273). While ...

Geeking out on the science of risk – check out the new look Risk Bites

August 7, 2014

We’ve been making Risk Bites videos for a couple of years now – if you haven’t seen them, they’re short, understandable and (hopefully) entertaining videos about the science behind human health risks. If you haven’t checked out the channel in a while, please pop over and take a look (http://www.youtube.com/user/riskbites/videos).  We’ve been implementing ...

How far should universities go in hyping research?

August 1, 2014

An article passed through my Twitter stream today from Gizmodo shouting out “Change Your Hair Color By Etching Nano-Patterns Into Each Strand”. It pretty much mirrors a press release from the University of New Mexico claiming “New technology allows hair to reflect almost any color”. Carbon-copy reporting is pretty much standard these days in science ...

Creative and collaborative health solutions – We Make Health Fest

August 1, 2014

Just a reminder that I will be speaking at the first We Make Health Fest in Ann Arbor, on August 16.  This is an event for for anyone passionate about health, technology, and participatory design. And its for the whole family – kids are as just as much a part of the collective “maker” ...

The unspoken but vitally important issue of open defecation

July 28, 2014

In preparing for the next Risk Bites video (out this week), I came across the website opendefecation.org, and was so struck by both the importance of the message and the effectiveness with which it’s communicated, that I felt compelled to share it here. Open defection is when people have no option but to ...

Q&A on Nanotech regulation in Europe

July 25, 2014

Chemistry World posted a good article yesterday on nanotech regulation in Europe (Europe mulls best way to handle nanotech by Andrew Williams).  I have a couple of quotes in the piece, along with Risk Science Center colleague Diana Bowman).  These are taken from a longer set of responses to questions from Williams, which ...

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Childhood lead exposure costs Michigan residents an estimated $330 million annually, and a statewide remediation program to eliminate the source ...



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