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We Are STS

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We Are STS

UCL Department of Science and Technology Studies (STS)

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Science and technology studies (STS) combines a wide range of research subjects, including: history of science, philosophy of science, sociology of science, science policy, and science communication. We Are STS is an official podcast of the Department of Science and Technology Studies at University College London (UCL).
 
We want your updates on today's scientific research directly from the source: straight from the scientist working hard to make new discoveries about our world. We’re here to help you learn the what, the why, and the how of the research we produce every day. Informal interviews probe deep into how science is done, and why the how matters when it's time to interpret the results. Roundtable discussions introduce you to hot new fields of study or investigate the darker sides of science. To keep ...
 
From archeology to zoology, real-world science is everywhere in Star Wars! Every episode includes an interview with an expert discussing how Star Wars relates to their field of study. Explore the many ways science is represented in a galaxy far, far away with hosts Melissa Miller and James Floyd, both freelance writers for Star Wars Insider magazine. Part of the Skywalking Network
 
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The Research Her

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The Research Her

Dr. Elissia T. Franklin

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Scicomm for you sis! The Research Her highlights Black women researchers and research topics relevant to wellbeing. Essentially, it's your source for sisterly science. We dive into biology, sexuality, behavioral and physical science, and everything in between. Research Scientist, Dr. Elissia Tenea, is a chemist and science communicator who brings the realness to keep us improving our lifestyle. You're guaranteed to love it here!
 
“Pathways to Enhance Rigor: A Collection of Conversations” is a limited-series podcast featuring neuroscientists discussing ways to better embed rigor into every part of the scientific process, from experimental design to sharing with the public. These conversations highlight the past, present, and future of rigor in neuroscience and emphasize how individuals can contribute to creating a culture of rigor in their lab and beyond. This podcast is a part of the Society for Neuroscience’s Founda ...
 
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This episode is about neural networks on noradrenaline- the key neuromodulator known to flip almost every switch in the brain! Drs. Esteban Oryarzabal and Connor Wander break down how noradrenaline, or norepinephrine help regulate brain states useful for attention and task-switching. The studies here cover a whole new way to interpret brain imaging…
 
The latest episode of Star Warsologies focuses on managing air (and space) traffic in Star Wars! Brendan Conboy, a designer of air traffic control systems, joins us for a discussion about how coordinating space traffic might work and not work in the galaxy far, far away. How do aircraft interact with the controllers at an airport? How did the shutt…
 
Dr Michel Wahome presents a wide-ranging critique of the “research for development” (R4D) model in science and technology policy, with special emphasis on its assumptions about innovation and progress. The deepest concerns we should have with this widely used model, she argues, is its deep faith the ability of science alone to solve social problems…
 
The guest for this episode of Sci on the Fly is Dr. Deborah Thomson. Dr. Thomson is a veterinarian and “One Health” advocate who has served as a Science Policy Advisor in the United States Senate. In addition to practicing clinical veterinary medicine, she founded and led a global organization that inspires children and adults to value the intercon…
 
The lack of representation on screen is a political issue on everybody’s lips. I investigate how popular streaming platforms, Netflix and Disney+, portray scientists in terms of gender, race, sexuality, neurodivergency, and socio-economic background. Is representation of the scientist moving away from being presented as white, straight, and male? I…
 
“What is STS?” This is a question all STS students are asked on a regular basis – when travelling, joining a new sports club, at parties or family reunions, and when being interviewed for jobs. I find the question isn’t as straightforward as most people want. I study Science and Society at University College London. In this episode, I explore what …
 
In this episode, Dr Carina Fearnley, Associate Professor of Science Communication, talks about warning research and disaster preparedness. Carina is an expert in disaster warning and public engagement. Her research focuses on ways to improve the effectiveness of warning systems. She’s contributed a lot to communication around risk and warning in th…
 
Secretary of the International Whaling Commission, Dr. Rebecca Lent spoke with Sci on the Fly about the history and evolution of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) – one of the oldest international marine conservation treaty organizations and one of the first to be advised by science. The organization has gone from a body of whaling nations…
 
We have a special episode of Star Warsologies! This episode is our "Science of Star Wars" panel at San Diego Comic-Con: Special Edition, from November 27, 2021. Our "Science of Star Wars" panel at Comic-Con: Special Edition 2021 had several awesome guests! Fon Davis (creative director, Fonco Studios) shared behind-the-scenes knowledge from working …
 
Today, we’re talking CAREERS. Here in STS, careers thinking is at the core of our degree programmes. Every tutor has something important to say about careers, we have our “flexible futures” agenda underpinning the degrees, and we make big use of the resources offered by services across all of UCL. In short, we work hard at career development and we…
 
In this episode, ProfJoeCain talks with Dr. Melanie Smallman and Dr. Jean-Baptiste Gouyon about UCL’s new Master’s in Science Communication (MSc). They discuss the philosophy behind the degree, some of its key modules, and how it is designed to balance practical skill development with foundational theory in communications. There also is discussion …
 
As of November 2021, more than 46.4 million people in the UK have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine as part of the biggest mass-immunization programme the country has ever run. Most of us rushed to book our appointments as soon as we received a message, keen to protect ourselves from the virus. However, not everyone has been quite …
 
The latest episode of Star Warsologies focuses on limb replacement and prosthetics in Star Wars! Dr. Gerald Stark, senior clinical specialist and prosthetician for Ottobock, joins us for a discussion about bionic limbs, exoskeletons, and other prosthetics and orthotics. How close are we to Luke's bionic hand in real life? How is the work of a prost…
 
Dr. Samuel M. Goodman is the author of Beyond Carbon Neutral: How We Fix the Climate Crisis Now, a book about how to reverse climate change. He is a chemical engineer by training who earned a doctorate from the University of Colorado Boulder after undergraduate studies at the University of Wisconsin Madison. Following graduate school, Dr. Goodman c…
 
Dr. Samuel M. Goodman is the author of Beyond Carbon Neutral: How We Fix the Climate Crisis Now, a book about how to reverse climate change. He is a chemical engineer by training who earned a doctorate from the University of Colorado Boulder after undergraduate studies at the University of Wisconsin Madison. Following graduate school, Dr. Goodman c…
 
Will robots steal my job? Will gene editing cure my cancer? HYPE is a fundamental part of science communication, the development of new technologies, and the crucially important interface between business, investment, and new technology. How does HYPE work? Can it be used for good? In this interview, Gemma Milne discusses her book, SMOKE AND MIRROR…
 
The latest episode of Star Warsologies focuses on astrophysics in Star Wars! Astrophysics professor Dr. Lisa Will joins us for a discussion about planets, moons, and asteroids. She breaks down just what the phrase "a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away" actually means in terms of space and time as we know it. We also learn about real-life plane…
 
We’re back about a summer break. When we say “break,” we mean we’ve been working hard for most of the summer to create new episodes. WeAreSTS is a podcast dedicated to showcasing research, teaching, and success in UCL Department of Science and Technology Studies (STS). Our core audience is teachers and those considering a degree in our programme. W…
 
The latest episode of Star Warsologies focuses on recording history in Star Wars! Join us for a discussion with journalist and historian Chelsea Tatham Zukowski. Learn about the important role of journalism in a just society and how the Empire managed to erase the history of the Jedi. Chelsea talks about what beat she would like to work, and why An…
 
The latest episode of Star Warsologies focuses on alcohol and brewing in Star Wars! Join us for a discussion with Reed Miller about brewing, fermentation, and distilling. What we see in cantinas and casinos isn't the full story. In Star Warsologies, hosts James Floyd and Melissa Miller combine their love of Star Wars with their keen interest in all…
 
The guest in this episode is Dr Bill Sullivan, the author of "Pleased to Meet Me: Genes, Germs, and the Curious Forces That Make Us Who We Are" (2019, National Geographic Books). Sullivan is a professor at the Indiana University School of Medicine in Indianapolis, where he studies genetics and microbiology. An award-winning researcher, teacher, and…
 
The latest episode of Star Warsologies focuses on psychology in Star Wars! Join us for a discussion with Dr. Drea Letamendi about the psychology of our favorite characters in Star Wars. How is The Mandalorian coping with the knowledge that he was raised in a cult? How does Leia handle her grief? And why is Kylo Ren so emo? Drea's thoughts on pop cu…
 
In this episode, Mr. Daniel Simmons, Principal of Simmons Energy & Environmental Strategy and former Assistant Secretary for Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy at the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) from 2019 to 2021, speaks to his experience as a political appointee within the DOE; advocating for affordable reliable clean energy; balancing lea…
 
A special bonus episode of Star Warsologies is up! Star Warsologies comes to Comic Con At Home 2021! Thanks to The Fleet Science Center in San Diego for hosting this great panel, The Science of Star Wars. James and Melissa moderate a panel of three scientists (geologist, biologist, and astronomer, oh my!) plus a concept designer who has worked on a…
 
Dr. Ambika Bumb is a Science and Technology Policy Fellow working in the Crisis Management and Strategy Office at the U.S. Department of State. Within this office, she was part of several tasks forces that played major roles during the coronavirus pandemic, including the Repatriation Task Force that brought home American citizens stranded abroad du…
 
The latest episode of Star Warsologies is up! Electrical engineer Justin Gagne joins us to chat about designing technology to go into space. What starts as a discussion of real-life ion engines also covers radiation exposure, landing telemetry, and even quantum entanglement. Justin worked on the Mars helicopter Ingenuity and does a great job helpin…
 
Polar biologist Angela Zoumplis joins us for an episode all about life at the extremes. What do tauntauns eat to maintain their large size? How is life adapted to the heat of Mustafar? And how does that space slug survive in an asteroid when ships aren't flying right down its throat? It turns out there are similarities to bacterial life here on Ear…
 
In honor of Megan Thee Stallion's THOT Shit release, we talk about hoe shit, the history of being considered a hoe, the politics of body autonomy, and the practice of pleasure activism. We get into the origin of the word, the work of pleasure activists, the history of control over black women's bodies, and how to ways to pursue personal liberation.…
 
Ibrahim Mohedas earned his masters and doctoral degrees from the University of Michigan. His doctoral research, supported through a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship, focused on the use of ethnographic techniques during the design of medical devices for low- and middle-income countries, collecting data in healthcare settings …
 
It's the second episode of Star Warsologies! In the NEW podcast Star Warsologies, hosts James Floyd and Melissa Miller combine their love of Star Wars with their keen interest in all things academic by asking experts about how their field is represented in a galaxy far, far away. The newest addition to the Skywalking Network brings you a monthly po…
 
The narrative about being single is often seen as monolithic. Every single person is expected to want a relationship. There are stereotypes about educated Black women and their desires. In this episode, we two Black women share their story. In this episode we discuss: Family and friends putting pressure on single women to find partners Women's desi…
 
In this week’s episode our guest is Dr. Maryann Cairns, who talks about her career path and her studies on pathogens in water. Dr Cairns is an environmental anthropologist who uses using creative research designs and cultural understanding to safeguard the environment and human health. Her work has examined the politics of water and sanitation syst…
 
Welcome to the debut episode of Star Warsologies! Hosts James Floyd and Melissa Miller combine their love of Star Wars with their keen interest in all things academic by asking experts about how their field is represented in a galaxy far, far away. The newest addition to the Skywalking Network brings you a monthly podcast about science and Star War…
 
As we continue our conversation after Teacher Appreciation week and celebrate Mental Health Aware Month this May we discuss recruiting and retention in the teaching profession with Dr. Valerie Hill-Jackson who dives into the topic of teacher's mental health and how to create better spaces for teachers. Dr. Valerie Hill-Jackson received her Interdis…
 
Star Warsologies is a Podcast about Science and Star Wars! From archeology to zoology, real-world science is everywhere in Star Wars! Every episode of Star Warsologies will include an interview with an expert discussing how Star Wars relates to their field of study. Explore the many ways science is represented in a galaxy far, far away with hosts M…
 
We are revisited by the wonder Dr. Arianna Stokes from episode 20 of the show. She educates us on her dissertation titled "Faculty Perceptions of Persistence Among African American Students Enrolled in Distance Education Courses at Community Colleges" and much more. In this episode, we discuss Challenges faced by online learners Disparities in dist…
 
Dr Roberto Delgado has a doctorate in Biological Anthropology from Duke University, where he did research on the social behavior and calls of male orangutans. So how did he end up becoming the Program Director for the Arctic Observing Network (AON) in the National Science Foundation's Office of Polar Programs – as far removed from the jungle of Bor…
 
#7 Professor Simon Werrett (UCL Professor of History and Philosophy of Science) talks about his award-winning book, THRIFTY SCIENCE. In Britain of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the practices of reuse, re-purpose, and recycle were core to the work of what became science. More important, if you follow the trails left by these activities, …
 
In this two-part episode, Dr. nature McGinn talks about how the AAAS Science & Technology Policy fellowship helped to give her skills and open doors for a permanent job in federal government and the work she does in her current position to help safeguard the environment and species in the world's last true wilderness area - Antarctica. This podcast…
 
Dr Melanie Smallman talks about her meta-study of attitudes across 10 emerging technologies by public, government, and politicians. Her conclusion: we talk quite differently about innovation. Smallman argues those differences matter for how we respond to the changes taking place around us. Science communication and public engagement needs to be sma…
 
For April Fool’s Day, we talk about a famous joke in the history of biology. Dr Rebecca Martin interviews Professor Joe Cain about the Snouters. It’s a joke that began with publication of a book in 1961 that told the story of an unusual group of mammals discovered on a remote archipelago in the Pacific Ocean. It was a fiction; a prank; a joke. That…
 
Dr. Nature McGinn is currently the Environmental Policy Program Manager and Antarctic Conservation Act Permit Officer in the Office of Polar Programs at the National Science Foundation. Nature has been at NSF for over eight years, with her first two years as an AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellow (STPF) in the Office of Polar Programs, before e…
 
James Lighthill, UCL Provost (1979-1989), was the author of a highly influential report to the UK government about artificial intelligence (AI). It questioned what AI was and what it could achieve. Its impact was profound. It was the cause, say some, of the first “AI winter” of the 1970s. Lighthill was one of the leading mathematicians of the 20th …
 
Episode #4: Professor Charlotte Sleigh talks about the STS1Book for 2021, a book she has co-written with Professor Amanda Rees. It’s called "Humans". In our conversation, we talk about the book and some of its main ideas. We also talk about the book as one in a long series of projects Charlotte has undertaken in the general area of “animal studies,…
 
With so many children currently attending school virtually on laptops, tablets and other smart devices, there is concern about how the extended use of these devices affects them. While much attention has been given to the cognitive effects of extended device usage, Dr. Regina Pope-Ford has instead investigated the physical effects. In this episode,…
 
BONUS: We pay tribute to our friend and colleague, Dr William Fleming Maclehose (1967-2020). Bill was a historian of medieval medicine and an important part of STS. He was an expert in theories of sleep and sleeping. Bill loved the history of medicine in all its forms and across all the world’s great cultures. This episode is an interview with Bill…
 
With all the talk and skepticism about vaccines, it is a great time to take a sit back and evaluate the science of vaccines. Today, we have the pleasure of learning from Natasha Duggan. Natasha is a virologist whose work is centered around understanding antibodies for potential HIV treatment. In this episode, we discuss: -Why vaccines work after vi…
 
What are the similarities between the COVID-19 pandemic and the 1918 ‘Spanish Flu’ pandemic? What can we learn by a comparison? How does history help us understand what’s happening today? One of our experts in science communication, Dr Jean-Baptiste Gouyon, interviews one of our historians of science and medicine, Dr Cristiano Turbil, to answer the…
 
“Pathways to Enhance Rigor: A Collection of Conversations” is a limited-series podcast featuring neuroscientists discussing ways to better embed rigor into every part of the scientific process, from experimental design to sharing with the public. These conversations highlight the past, present, and future of rigor in neuroscience and emphasize how …
 
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