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Environmental physicist Prof Mark Sutton explains how our fast growing "nitrogen footprint" from agriculture and industry is reaching crisis levels as reactive nitrogen pollutes our air and soil and is a direct threat to human health. A leading researcher and advisor on nitrogen policy, Prof Sutton argues that smarter nitrogen management is not only a health and environmental priority but will prevent continued enormous economic losses. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.
Virologist Eddie Holmes explains how viral and bacterial pandemics of the type that spawned the Black Death and Ebola remain an unpredictable and inevitable part of our future. Professor Holmes describes how new technologies like genomic sequencing help us explore the origins and evolution of pathogens linked to pandemics as far back as Ancient Rome, and how evolving biosecurity and surveillance systems offer us a chance of containing outbreaks. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.
In our annual PhD episode, we chat with two young researchers on their diverse investigations. We hear from bioscientist Anne Aulsebrook, who is looking at how urban lighting and light pollution is impacting the health and behaviour of wild birds that make their home in our cities. We also speak to chemical engineer Mitchell Nothling about his research into how enzymes like those found in our digestive systems could be harnessed to create sustainable and more efficient detergents. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.
Criminologist Penny Green explains how states, entrusted to define crimes and enforce the laws that deter them, can themselves be complicit in the worst social harms. Professor Green is director of the International State Crime Initiative, which seeks to understand how states can become perpetrators rather than protectors, and how civil society groups can be enlisted to fight back. Presented by Lynne Haultain.
Virologist and infectious diseases expert Prof John Fazakerley details the myriad threats to the global food supply from pathogen infestations in crops and livestock, and how new genetic and surveillance technologies are lending hope to keeping them in check. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.
Urban public health researcher Prof Mark Stevenson describes the better human health outcomes to be had in cities that emphasize active transport modes like cycling and walking, while discouraging dependence on cars. Presented by Lynne Haultain.
Stroke rehabilitation researcher Prof. Julie Bernhardt discusses the state of the science in stroke recovery. Taking an interdisciplinary approach, Prof Bernhardt and her team develop and test new exercises and rehabilitation measures that aim not only to reduce disability but promote recovery. This includes renewed attention to precise timing of therapeutic interventions, and to environmental enrichment of clinical spaces. Presented by Dr Andi Horvath.
As populations in the developed economies continue to age due to longer life expectancies and lower birth rates, what will be the impact on the workplace? Is there a place for positive age discrimination at a time of high youth unemployment, or should the rights of all workers -- regardless of their years -- be respected? And to what extent do economics, culture and individual aspiration play into how societies decide how long one can or should work?Industrial relations and elder law expert Professor Mia Rönnmar, from Lund University, joins host Lynne Haultain for an international perspective on the place and plight of older workers in the workforce.
In a world with a bewildering mix of fact and fiction, and in which social and mainstream media only add to the confusion, how do we separate out false or dubious claims from the well-founded and evidence-based? Research and clinical psychologist Prof Scott Lilienfeld joins science host Dr Andi Horvath to help us distinguish pseudoscience from the real thing by exploring popular myths that too often make fools of us.
Philosopher and social theorist Prof Sally Haslanger outlines the persistence of ideologies like racism or sexism that entrench injustice or privilege, and how we might best combat deeply embedded misconceptions that endure in our societies in defiance of evidence or reasoned argument. Presented by Peter Mares.