Webinar: Imagining a New Future for Nuclear Power
Is it possible for nuclear power to answer the call for the small-scale, community-focused, decentralized energy future envisioned by many progressives? Can nuclear engineering jettison its tradition of training engineers to be uncritical champions of the technology? What would a revitalized nuclear industry look like?
On June 1, Issues in Science and Technology and the Consortium for Science, Policy, & Outcomes will host a discussion with Suzanne Hobbs Baker (Good Energy Collective), Denia Djokić (Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs), Jessica Lovering (Good Energy Collective) and Aditi Verma (Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs), moderated by Gloria Gonzalez (Politico). These four nuclear engineers and experts are actively engaging with the question how their field—not to mention power plants themselves—could change to meet the challenges of the present and future.
June 01, 2021 2:00pm—3:00pm
Webinar: Can Alternative Meats Bring the Heartland More than Burgers?
The rise of alternative meats—either plant-based or lab-grown—could bring huge benefits for the environment, public health, animal welfare, and potentially even rural workers and the national economy. Currently, progress in this field is slow—alternative meats make up less than 1% of the total meat market share. Accelerating innovation will require government leadership, public policy, and investment.
Should the government fund alternative meats? What policies would best support innovation? Join CSPO and Issues in Science and Technology for a virtual panel discussion with Alex Smith (Breakthrough Institute), Christy Spackman (Arizona State University), and Johnny Ream (Stray Dog Capital) and moderated by Los Angeles Times science journalist Amina Khan.
April 28, 2021 1:00pm—2:00pm
Webinar: Should We Patent a COVID-19 Vaccine?
Quashing the COVID-19 pandemic will require companies to manufacture billions of vaccines at an affordable price. Conventional wisdom says that the best way to do this requires easing up on patent restrictions. But Ken Shadlen argues that the most effective way to quickly mass-produce a COVID-19 vaccine may be to have “patent holders organize networks of licensees and manufacturers, letting them coordinate and manage global supply chains, like giant, vertically integrated firms.”
However, if drug prices aren’t kept under control, Bhaven Sampat warns, “COVID-19 treatments could end up being limited to those who can pay—or even bankrupting the health care system.” Taxpayer-funded research and government efforts have helped pharmaceutical companies develop vaccine candidates at unprecedented speed. But the debate over whether the government has any say over how much those drugs should cost has been raging for decades. The COVID-19 crisis may be pointing to a better way to translate government-funded science into affordable pharmaceuticals.
On Friday, September 11, at 12:00 PM ET, join Ken Shadlen and Bhaven Sampat for an in-depth discussion, moderated by Robert Cook-Deegan, on how best to guarantee access for the vaccine that will help end this crisis.
September 11, 2020 12:00pm—1:00pm
Webinar: Can Voting by Mail Ensure a Safe and Secure Election?
During a presidential election year, the COVID-19 pandemic has the potential to disrupt the most important tenet of democracy: political representation. In response, many states are implementing or considering systems to allow citizens to vote by mail.
Although most observers find large-scale voter fraud unlikely, there are significant challenges to scaling up vote-by-mail. Officials need to address cybersecurity concerns and make absentee voting more widely accessible. Otherwise the system will be set up for failure—and this election will be remembered as the 2020 vote-by-mail fiasco.
On June 24 at 1:00 PM ET, join Maria Carnovale, lead policy analyst at Duke University’s Initiative for Science and Society, to discuss her Issues article, “Will the Idea of Vote-by-Mail Survive COVID-19?”
June 24, 2020 1:00pm—2:00pm
Webinar: A Global Strategy for Preventing the Next Pandemic
Protection of biodiversity and animal habitat need to be on the front lines of the fight against deadly diseases. Habitat destruction and the wildlife trade are just two of the unsustainable practices that are increasing the likelihood of diseases such as COVID-19 making the leap from animals to humans. Conservation scientist Leah Gerber, the founding director of the Center for Biodiversity Outcomes at Arizona State University, proposes creating a global body with scientific heft and enforcement teeth to lead a sustained fight against the drivers of zoonotic disease.
June 11, 2020 3:00pm—4:00pm
Webinar: Are Bats Really to Blame for the COVID-19 Pandemic?
Bats have been identified by some experts, and in the media, as the culprits behind the costliest pandemic in modern history, even though the source and method of transmission of the novel coronavirus remain unclear. Despite a long tradition of being misunderstood and feared, bats have an outstanding record of living safely with humans. Exaggerated warnings of bat disease risks aren’t just misguided. They threaten the health of entire ecosystems and economies. Join Merlin Tuttle, one of the world’s leading bat scientists and conservation experts, to discuss the vital role bats play in ecosystems and how misplaced public health concerns are endangering these important mammals.
May 27, 2020 4:00pm—5:00pm
COVID-19 and the Mission of the US Public University
How have public universities responded to the COVID-19 pandemic? As university presidents look toward resuming in-person classes in the fall, what have they learned from the crisis, how will their institutions evolve as a result, and what might that mean for the future of higher education in the United States? How will public universities adapt to the serious financial challenges likely to arise in states and the nation in the months ahead? Could the response to the pandemic translate into an enhanced role for America’s public universities in the restoration of the nation’s public health and the recovery of its economic and social wellbeing?
Please join the presidents of three of the nation’s premier public universities—Arizona State, Purdue, and the University of Washington—as they discuss “COVID-19 and the Mission of the US Public University.” Register for the online event and participate in this important conversation.
May 27, 2020 2:45pm—3:45pm
Webinar: Applying Engineering Lessons to Pandemic Management
The COVID-19 pandemic has produced challenges that are commonly dealt with in engineering in the United States. Policy responses to the pandemic could be improved with lessons from other types of infrastructure, and by investing in “efficient resilience” when it comes to medical infrastructure. Engineering professors Braden Allenby and Mikhail Chester take a close look at how engineered systems such as electric power, communications and transportation infrastructures deal with peak load, disaster recovery, and partial failure to offer ideas for building greater resilience into the US medical system and infrastructures that provide critical services during pandemics.
May 14, 2020 3:00pm—4:00pm