Science & Technology

Is New Zealand ready for a COVID-19 vaccine? 🔊

Is New Zealand ready for a COVID-19 vaccine? 🔊

As COVID-19 cases continue to rise, the world is racing to create a viable vaccine to help control the spread of the virus. Is New Zealand ready for a vaccine? How will it be rolled out? And how effective will it be?

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How can we learn to adapt to changes in this dynamic world? ▶

How can we learn to adapt to changes in this dynamic world? ▶

Much of scientific research involves the generation and testing of hypotheses that can facilitate the development of accurate models for a system. In machine learning the automated building of accurate models is desired, however traditional machine learning often assumes that the underlying systems are static and unchanging over time.

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Why are data ethics important? ▶

Why are data ethics important? ▶

In this talk, Professor Tim Dare from the Faculty of Arts at the University of Auckland will discuss why transparency and explainability have become central to data ethics and the reasons there are to question that centrality.

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What is eco-anxiety? ▶

What is eco-anxiety? ▶

This seminar hosted by the University of Auckland Sustainability Network explores the issue of eco-anxiety and includes speakers from the University of Auckland and AUT who will present current research and approaches to eco-anxiety. 

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Fast fashion: What are the hidden costs?

Fast fashion: What are the hidden costs?

“The textile and clothing manufacturing industry comes with a heavy price including environmental pollution and the well-publicised issues around the income and working conditions for workers.”

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What needs to happen to address wildfires? 🔊

What needs to happen to address wildfires? 🔊

In the last few weeks, the western part of the United States has experienced one of the worst wildfire seasons in history. Not coincidently, some areas have also recorded the highest temperatures since records began.

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Climate change: How damaging is methane?

Climate change: How damaging is methane?

Methane is a shorter-lived greenhouse gas – why do we average it out over 100 years? By doing so, do we risk emitting so much in the upcoming decades that we reach climate tipping points?

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Can you trust political polls?

Can you trust political polls?

From now until October 17, Election Day in New Zealand, voters will be getting election poll information from multiple directions. So which ones can be trusted?

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Can New Zealand keep coronavirus out?

Can New Zealand keep coronavirus out?

Stringent border controls and mandatory quarantine give New Zealand a good chance to remain free of COVID-19 for months to come, according to new modelling from Te Pūnaha Matatini.

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How does one model a pandemic?

How does one model a pandemic?

With basic mathematical models, researchers can begin to forecast the progression of diseases and understand the effect of interventions on disease spread.

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What technologies can help clean up rivers? 🔊

What technologies can help clean up rivers? 🔊

New Zealand has a dirty rivers problem. In 2017, two-thirds of the country’s rivers were deemed too polluted to swim in. Given this, research is being carried out to find ways in which the country can attempt to clean up its rivers.

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How do your genes affect your mental health? ▶

How do your genes affect your mental health? ▶

In this lecture hosted by the Liggins Institute, University of Auckland researchers discuss how knowing what your genes do can guide the development of future personalised medicine for prevention and treatment of mental health conditions and type 1 diabetes.

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What is the future of food?

What is the future of food?

Gilbert Wong looks at the forces shaping the future of food and how research is contributing to what’s likely to be on our plates in 2030.

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What institutional reform befits the era of the long climate crisis?

What institutional reform befits the era of the long climate crisis?

On October 22, former MP and Green Party co-leader Russel Norman, who now leads Greenpeace Aotearoa New Zealand, delivered the 2019 Bruce Jesson Memorial Lecture at the University of Auckland, looking at institutional reform options for dealing with climate change, in light of Parliament’s recent passage of the Zero Carbon Bill.

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Q+A: Does food advertising push up obesity rates?

Q+A: Does food advertising push up obesity rates?

New Zealand has one of the highest rates of obesity in the world – but how much does advertising have to do with it? Jim Mann is calling for greater government regulations around how food is advertised, especially to children.

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Q+A: Why are the numbers of insects in fast decline?

Q+A: Why are the numbers of insects in fast decline?

Why are the numbers of insects in fast decline? What does it mean for our food supply and our long term survival? Scientists say climate change is not the only reason. Maria Armoudian speaks with Andrew Dopheide about the current plight of our insect population.

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Q+A: Could ditching cars make us healthier?

Q+A: Could ditching cars make us healthier?

A recent report has found that our use of cars is harming both our health and our environment. The report, titled Turning the Tide, claims that urgent steps are needed to encourage New Zealanders to walk, cycle, or use public transport.

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Q+A: Is it time to stop using cars?

Q+A: Is it time to stop using cars?

A recent report from a team of researchers based at the University of Otago has found that our use of cars is harming both our health and our environment. Is it time to give up our cars?

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Q+A: How does climate change impact our mental health?

Q+A: How does climate change impact our mental health?

We all know climate change is a problem. It is generally portrayed as an exclusively bio-physical issue that will impact things like our weather and oceans, agriculture and water availability. But climate change also has an impact on mental health.

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Who is leading the way to zero carbon?

Who is leading the way to zero carbon?

Eighteen countries from developed economies have had declining carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels for at least a decade. While every nation is unique, they share some common themes that can show Australia, and the world, a viable path to reducing emissions.

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What is love? 🔊

What is love? 🔊

Today is Valentine’s Day but what exactly is love? How have notions of love changed over time? Can love be consciously developed? And how does love for partners, friends, children, and countries differ?

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How will climate change impact Aotearoa? ▶

How will climate change impact Aotearoa? ▶

How will climate change affect our natural world, our society, and our culture? What can we do to halt the looming catastrophe? A panel of experts discusses how climate change will impact New Zealand.

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How does culture affect mental health? 🔊

How does culture affect mental health? 🔊

How does culture shape our understanding and treatment of mental illness? Maria Armoudian speaks with Roberto Lewis-Fernandez, Tanya Marie Luhrmann, and Andrew G. Ryder about culture and its impact on mental health.

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Do animals feel fear?

Do animals feel fear?

Afraid of lions by moonlight and raptors by day, animals will behave in dramatic ways as Cassie Fruend explains.

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Q+A: How do we know the earth is warming?

Q+A: How do we know the earth is warming?

All scientific indications are suggesting that the Earth is fast reaching a tipping point, a point of irreversible damage to life on the planet. Maria Armoudian spoke with world-renowned climate scientist James Hansen about the science and politics of climate change.

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Debate: Should we edit the genomes of human embryos?

Debate: Should we edit the genomes of human embryos?

The introduction of genome editing signals a dramatic departure from the usual pathway through reproductive care. However, the use of genetic technologies in reproduction is frequently criticised for harbouring eugenic undertones.

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How does climate change affect conception? 🔊

How does climate change affect conception? 🔊

We know there are higher death rates happening because of climate change but how is it affecting birth rates? Alan Barreca’s research has looked at the effects of climate on fertility rates. Maria Armoudian spoke with Barreca about his research. 

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Q+A: What are the hidden costs of civilisation?

Q+A: What are the hidden costs of civilisation?

What are the hidden costs of civilisation? Could civilisation be behind disease, mental illness, climate change, and religious fundamentalism? Spencer Wells thinks it might just be. Maria Armoudian speaks to Wells about his book Pandora’s Seed: The Unforeseen Cost of Civilisation.

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Q+A: A silent epidemic: Why are suicide rates on the rise?

Q+A: A silent epidemic: Why are suicide rates on the rise?

Suicide rates have been steadily rising in the United States. So what explains the increase in the numbers of people taking their own lives, and what can be done to solve what amounts to a crisis in public health? Maria Armoudian speaks with Mark S. Kaplan. 

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Q+A: How does trauma affect people and society?

Q+A: How does trauma affect people and society?

Trauma has profound and lifelong physical and psychological effects on its survivors. It can damage the mind, the brain, and stunt development. What exactly is trauma? How does it affect us individually and as a society? And how can trauma survivors recover from these experiences? 

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Is inheritance about more than just genes?

Is inheritance about more than just genes?

Epigenetics has been hailed as the missing link between genes and environment. Nicola Shepheard explores this phenomenon in greater detail and seeks out whether inheritance is about more than just genes.

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Q+A: Can we avoid the looming climate wars?

Q+A: Can we avoid the looming climate wars?

Our options as a humanity may be dwindling in the face of climate change. The coming changes may completely alter the world as we know it with collapsed ecosystems, mass immigration of climate refugees, and more devastating wars over basic necessities such as food and water. Maria Armoudian speaks to Gwynne Dyer about the scenarios we face with climate change.

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Why are we killing our rivers?  ▶

Why are we killing our rivers? ▶

In the first video of our new “big question” series Daniel Hikuroa from Māori and Pacific Studies at the University of Auckland talks about his big question, “Why are we killing our rivers?”

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Q+A: How did Stephen Hawking change physics?

Q+A: How did Stephen Hawking change physics?

After the recent passing of world-renowned physicist Stephen Hawking, Maria Armoudian talked with Peter Galison and Priya Natarajan about the work and legacy of Hawking within the context of physics.

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How bad is oxygen depletion for our oceans?

How bad is oxygen depletion for our oceans?

A major University of Otago-led study into an ancient climate change event that impacted a significant percentage of Earth’s oceans has brought into sharp focus a lesser-known villain in global warming: oxygen depletion.

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Q+A: What’s the cost of dissing science?

Q+A: What’s the cost of dissing science?

Science is no longer cool, according to Chris Mooney. This could have huge consequences for the world, which needs science to help resolve many crises facing us today. But people are paying less attention and giving less credence to science and scientists due in part to politics, mainstream media, religion, and anti-intellectualism.

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