How we boosted female faculty numbers in male-dominated departments
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
4d ago
In 2016 the University of Melbourne, Australia, asked for female-only applicants when it advertised three vacancies in its School of Mathematics and Statistics. It repeated the exercise in 2018 and 2019 to fill similar vacancies in physics, chemistry, and engineering and information technology. Elaine Wong and Georgina Such tell the How to Save Humanity in 17 Goals podcast why certain schools wanted only female candidates to apply, and how staff and students reacted to the policy. They also explain what it achieved in terms of addressing the under-representation of female faculty in ..read more
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‘It reflects the society we live in where a young person does not feel that life is worth living’
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
2w ago
A drive to reduce suicide mortality rates is a key indicator of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Psychiatrist Shekhar Saxena, who led the World Health Organization’s mental health and substance abuse program after working in clinical practice for more than two decades, says that although progress is being made, a worryingly high number of young people are choosing to end their lives. “They have to struggle through the school education, competitive examinations, then they have to struggle for a job,” says Saxena, who now teaches at Harvard Chan School of Public Health, in ..read more
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‘Blue foods’ to tackle hidden hunger and improve nutrition
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
3w ago
As a nutrition and planetary health researcher, Christopher Golden takes a keen interest in the second of 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals and its aim to end hunger. But Golden’s research also focuses on “hidden hunger,” a term he uses to describe the impact of dietary deficiencies in micronutrients such as iron, zinc, fatty acids, and vitamins A and B12. Hidden hunger, he argues in the second episode of the How to Save Humanity in 17 Goals podcast series, could be better addressed if more people adopted a diet that includes more ‘blue’ or aquatic foods. These includ ..read more
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“People in poverty lack money. So let’s just give them money” 
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
1M ago
Poverty is about more than just meeting basic material needs, says Catherine Thomas. Its corrosive effects are also social and psychological, causing people to feel marginalized and helpless. Thomas’s research into anti-poverty programs has focused on the effects of one aimed at women in the West African country of Niger, which aims to support subsistence farmers whose livelihoods are impacted by climate change. One branch of the program involved providing an unconditional $300 cash transfer alongside business and life skills training. Thomas, who is based at the Unversity of Michigan in Ann ..read more
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Chandrayaan and what it means for India's brain drain
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
2M ago
In August the Chandrayaan-3 spacecraft touched down, making India only the fourth to have successfully landed a spacecraft on the moon. In this special episode of the Working Scientist podcast, Somak Raychaudhuryan astrophysicist and vice-chancellor at Ashoka University, tells Jack Leeming about India’s history of space research, the significance of the lunar landing, and how it might help to stem a “brain drain” of Indian researchers moving abroad permanently to develop their careers.  The episode is part of the Nature Spotlight on India, an editorially-independent supplement. Hosted o ..read more
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Why we need an academic career path that combines science and art
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
2M ago
For a three-year period as a postdoctoral researcher, molecular biologist and visual artist Daniel Jay was given both a lab and a sudio to work in. In the final episode of this six-part Working Scientist about art and science, Julie Gould asks why, decades later, Jay’s experience is still unusual. Why do scientists with expertise in, say, music, sculpture, pottery or creative writing have to pursue these interests as weekend hobbies, with science “paying the bills?” Jay, who is Dean of the graduate school of biomedical sciences at Tufts University in Boston, Massachusetts, says toda ..read more
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How to create compelling scientific data visualisations
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
3M ago
Data form the backbone of the scientific method, but it can be impenetrable. In the penultimate episode of this six-part Working Scientist podcast series about art-science collaborations, Julie Gould talks to artists and data visualisation specialists about how they interpet and present data in art forms ranging from music to basket weaving. Keep things simple wherever possible, agree Duncan Ross, chief data officer at the Times Higher Education publication, and James Bayliss, an interaction and visualisation analyst at Springer Nature. “My go-to tool is a pen and paper or ..read more
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How ChatGPT and sounds from space brought a “luminous jelly” to life
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
3M ago
GUI/GOOEY is an international online exhibition that explores digital and technological representations of the biological world. In the fourth episode of this six-part Working Scientist podcast series about art and science, Julie Gould talks to some of the artists and scientist whose collaborations created exhibits for the event, which ran from March to June 2023. Its curator Laura Splan, an interdisciplinary artist based in Brooklyn, New York, says GUI/GOOEY reconsidered how technology affects our understanding of nature and our constructions of nature. She is joined by Diana Scar ..read more
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The unexpected outcomes of artist-scientist collaborations
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
3M ago
Artist and illustrator Lucy Smith helps botanists to identify new species. Usually they request a set of drawings, she says, with a detailed set of requirements. But Smith, who joined London’s Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, more than 20 years ago, says: “We also feed back to the scientists and say, 'I’ve seen what you’ve asked me to see. But do you know what, I’ve also seen this? Did you know that this flower has this structure.'” In the second episode of this six-part Working Scientist podcast series about art and science, Smith is joined by other artists with experience of science c ..read more
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Art and science: close cousins or polar opposites?
Working Scientist
by Nature Careers
4M ago
In the first episode of this six-part Working Scientist podcast series, Julie Gould explores the history of science and art and asks researchers and artists to define what the two terms mean to them. Like science, art is a way of asking questions about the world, says Jessica Bradford, head of collections and principal curator at the Science Museum in London. But unlike art, science about interrogating the world in a way that is hopefully repeatable, adds UK-based artist Luke Jerram, who creates sculptures, installations and live artworks around the world. Ljiljana Fruk, a bionanotechnology ..read more
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