Episode 22 – Ethics, Conflict of Interest, and Science

Anastasia Bodnar, PhD, is our guest on this episode.  This is her second stint on Ikonokast, and for a refresher or if you are new to the show, we welcome you to listen to Genetic Engineering and Food Security.

Anastasia Bodnar
At the White House

Our topic for this show is the importance of disclosure of potential conflicts of interest while conducting and reporting on research.  Anastasia is a founding member and a director of Biology Fortified, an organization that presents information and research on the topic of genetic engineering.  Recently, Anastasia had a close up look at a potential conflict of interest, and we discuss that in depth.

Also, there are opportunities for science communicators to join the Biofortified group and Anastasia, Greg and Mike talk about what volunteer needs can be filled.

Biology Fortified Support Opportunities

Top Cancer Researcher Fails to Disclose Corporate Financial Ties in Major Research Journals

Conflicts of Interest Ethical Systems.org

Finally, here’s a video describing the GMO Corn Experiment discussed during the podcast:

Episode 21 – What messages go viral and reach millions?

Today, Ikonokast visits with Joe Romm, author of How To Go Viral and Reach Millions: Top Persuasion Secrets from Social Media Superstars, Jesus, Shakespeare, Oprah, and Even Donald Trump.

Romm is a senior fellow at the Center for American Progress, and the founder of the widely read and well respected Climate Progress (a part of Think Progress). He was for a time Acting Assistant Secreatary of the US Department of Energy, and has published several books on climate change, energy, national security, and communication, some of which we link to below.

In this interview, as well as in Romm’s book, you’ll learn about the tried and true methods of creating a message that sticks. You’ll also learn about the one thing Donald Trump is very good at (much to our collective peril).

Books by Joe Romm:

Climate Change: What Everyone Needs to Know

Language Intelligence: Lessons on persuasion from Jesus, Shakespeare, Lincoln, and Lady Gaga

Hell and High Water: How Global Warming Will Forever Change

Episode 20 – When The Uncertainty Principle Goes To 11, with Philip Moriarty

 Nigel Tufnel, lead guitarist of the band Spinal Tap, modified his amplifier for a higher energy state.  Something that he could go to that was louder than the loudest, for when “10” wouldn’t do.  His amplifier goes up to “11.” And he needs it for that special moment in the song “Hell Hole,” I guess.

Philip Moriarty is the guest for this episode of Ikonokast.  The interview is a wide-ranging tour of education in the US and the UK, where Professor Moriarty teaches physics and is delighted on the first day of term to see all of the t-shirts with the names of metal bands, as the students file into class.

Moriarty and the Molecules
Molecules

Music depends on waves.  Wave functions depend on, um, waves, too.  So music and quantum physics are naturally related in form, if not always function.  The humanities and science are not so easily separated.  In Moriarty’s book and in this podcast the two are firmly forged.

 

A selection if things mentioned in the podcast:

Giants of the Infinitesimal

Get me off Your Bleeping Mailing List (Peer reviewed PDF)

Pub Peer

The Death of Expertise: The Campaign against Established Knowledge and Why it Matters by Tim Nichols

Something about Carlo Rovelli

The Physics of Everyday Things: The Extraordinary Science Behind an Ordinary Day by James Kakalios.

 

Episode 19 – Science for Congress with Volcanologist Jess Phoenix

Dr. Jess Phoenix
Jess Phoenix for Congress
Jess Phoenix, a geologist, announces her candidacy for the 2018 congressional race for Steve Knight’s 25th district seat at Vasquez Rocks in Agua Dulce on Monday, April 18, 2017. Katharine Lotze/The Signal

Jess Phoenix is running for California’s 25th District Congressional seat. Our Congress lacks expertise in science and how science works at a basic level, and as a result there are some poorly thought out decisions are being made. Even worse, Congress is allowed to engage in explicitly anti-science political activities, such as assembling activist science deniers as the so-called science committees or subcommittees in both houses. This would not be as easy if there were a few dozen actual scientists in the House and Senate.

Jess Phoenix sees this as a challenge that must be met by scientists joining as active and influential members of the government. The seat she is running for is currently being held by a climate denialist.

Please consider donating to the campaign. Even if you don’t live in her future district, as a nation we need to have more scientists guiding policy from seats of power, such as the House of Representatives. Here is the campaign site: Jess2018.

Here is a TEDx talk, about geology, by the candidate:

Greg Laden interviewed Dr. Phoenix for this podcast.

Episode 17 – Strange Survivors with Dr. Oné Pagán

Bald Scientist
Dr. One Pagan

Our podcast returns with a fun interview of the author of Strange Survivors: How Organisms Defend and Attack in the Game of Life.  Oné Pagán is a researcher and professor at West Chester University in Pennsylvania and he blogs at Bald Scientist. This is his second book and it is a fascinating tour of adaptations that work well to enhance the survival of organisms in, as he refers to it, the game of life.

Here is an episode of another podcast interview he did at People Behind the Science.