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Town Hall Seattle Science Series

Town Hall Seattle

3
Followers
26
Plays
Town Hall Seattle Science Series

Town Hall Seattle Science Series

Town Hall Seattle

3
Followers
26
Plays
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About Us

The Science series presents cutting-edge research about biology, physics, chemistry, ecology, geology, astronomy, and more. These events appeal to many different levels of expertise, from grade school students to career scientists. With a range of relevant applications, including medicine, the environment, and technology, this series expands our thinking and our possibilities.

Latest Episodes

105. Jonathan Berman: Anti-Vaxxers and How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement

Vaccines are a documented success story, one of the most successful public health interventions in history.Yet there is a vocal anti-vaccination movement. How can we better understand the history and concerns behind that movement? Science professor Jonathan Berman joined us via livestream with revelations from his book Anti-Vaxxers: How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement. He explained how the origins of today’s anti-vaccine movement stretch all the way back to the resistance to Britain’s Vaccination Act of 1853, and explored how the arguments made back then mirror those made today. He provided background information on vaccines and how they work, and discusses the development of new vaccines in the twentieth century and their resulting controversies. In a moment where vaccine conversations are especially heightened and fraught, listen in as Berman explores the phenomenon of the anti-vaccine movement—and suggests a strategy for countering them. Jonathan Bermanis Assistant Professor in the Department of Basic Sciences at NYITCOM-Arkansas. His writing has been featured onNew Scientist,Harvard Business Review, TEDxSanAntonio, and others. An active science communicator, he served as national cochair of the 2017 March for Science, host of the unveiling of the world’s largest periodic table of the elements, and science fair judge. You can follow him on Twitter@jonathanberman. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9780262539326 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here or text TOWN HALL to 44321.

58 min2 d ago
Comments
105. Jonathan Berman: Anti-Vaxxers and How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement

104. David Allen Sibley: What It’s Like to Be a Bird

Can birds smell? Do robins ‘hear’ worms? Is this the same cardinal that was at my feeder last year? To answer the question of what birds are doing—and why—David Sibley joined us via livestream with insight from his new book What It’s Like to Be a Bird.Sibley answered frequently asked questions about the birds we see most often, covering everything from familiar backyard birds—such as blue jays, nuthatches, and chickadees—to less common species we might still easily observe, such as the seashore-dwelling Atlantic puffin. He brings us an approachable and informative look at the lives of birds beyond our backyards, revealing fascinating new scientific research on the myriad ways birds have adapted to environmental changes. Join Sibley for a comprehensive guide that shines a light on bird behavior in ways we never knew we wanted to know. David Sibleyis the author and illustrator of the Sibley Guides and other books and apps about birds and nature. He has been an avid birdwatcher ...

52 min1 w ago
Comments
104. David Allen Sibley: What It’s Like to Be a Bird

103. Cass Sunstein: Too Much Information

How much information is too much? Do we need to know how many calories are in the giant vat of popcorn that we bought on our way into the movie theater? Do we want to know if we are genetically predisposed to a certain disease? Not necessarily, argues behavioral scientist Cass Sunstein. Drawing from findings shared in his bookToo Much Information: Understanding What You Don’t Want to Know, Sunstein joined us via livestream to investigate how information can make us happy or miserable, and why we sometimes avoid it and sometimes seek it out. He posited, that rather than focusing on a “right to know,” our focus should be on human well-being and what information contributes to it. He invites us to consider whether what we need is more information, or more clarity about what that information is achieving. Cass Sunsteinis a professor at Harvard Law School, and the author of several books, includingThe Cost-Benefit RevolutionandHow Change Happens. In 2020, the World Health Organization...

60 min2 w ago
Comments
103. Cass Sunstein: Too Much Information

102. Sophie Egan with Tim Egan: Conscious Food Choices For Ourselves and the Planet

Is organic food really worth it? Are eggs okay to eat? What does it mean if something’s labeled “Fair Trade,” or “Biodynamic,” or “Cage Free”? Health, nutrition, and sustainability expert Sophie Egan explored the world of ethical food choices we face every day. With insight that aims to revolutionize our understanding of food, Sophie drew from her book How to Be a Conscious Eater: Making Food Choices That Are Good for You, Others, and the Planet and was joined in conversation with environmental author and journalist Tim Egan. Using three criteria—is it good for me? is it good for others? is it good for the planet?—Sophie moved past fads and diets to highlight the importance of information in making informed choices amid the chaos of hype and marketing. Sophie unpacked our eating habits from four perspectives—food produced by plants, by animals, by factories, and by restaurant kitchens. She offered tips for buying produce and cutting down on food waste, and illuminates the ...

63 minAPR 7
Comments
102. Sophie Egan with Tim Egan: Conscious Food Choices For Ourselves and the Planet

101. Ross Bayton: The Gardener’s Botanical

Horticultural author Ross Bayton presented a crash course in plant history, ruminating on the origin and significance of the Latin plant names we encounter every day. Scientific plant names are an invaluable tool for those who understand them. Formed from Greek and, more commonly, from Latin root words, not only do they make it possible for gardeners and botanists to communicate, they also contain a wealth of hidden information. Bayton joined us with a deep dive into this intricate world, revealing a breathtaking array of botanical definitions and information. Drawing from his new bookThe Gardener’s Botanical, he unlocked the secrets of plants both everyday and obscure, offering unique facts, name etymology, gorgeous full color illustrations, and more. Unlock the secret (and not-so-secret) origins of the growing world around us with Bayton’s illuminating exploration of the plants we know, and some we don’t. Ross Baytonis a horticulturalist and freelance editor. His books includeR...

61 minMAR 17
Comments
101. Ross Bayton: The Gardener’s Botanical

100. Dan Esty: Big Ideas for a Sustainable Future

Sustainability has recently skyrocketed as a global priority.The 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change and the adoption of the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals through the United Nations have highlighted the need to address critical threats to our environment. But according to Daniel Esty, in the United States issues like partisan divides, regional disputes, and deep disagreements over core principles have stalled progress toward policies and initiatives that aim to build a sustainable future. Esty joined us with excerpts from A Better Planet: Forty Big Ideas for a Sustainable Future, a collection of essays on ecology, environmental justice, Big Data, public health, and climate change, all with an emphasis on sustainability. Esty offered selections that call for sustainability through actionable, bipartisan approaches based on rigorous analytical research, offered us solutions for confronting issues such as the buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, water shortages, ...

76 minFEB 25
Comments
100. Dan Esty: Big Ideas for a Sustainable Future

99. Bees, Guts, Soil, and Cancer: The Microbiome

How are the health of soil, plants, bees, and humans connected? An all-star panel of experts joined us to answer this question with a discussion of the microscopic universe at the beginning and end of our food chain—the microbiome. Delve into the intricate world of microbes present in every human, the bacteria that help us digest food, regulate our immune system, and produce vitamins essential to our health. Explore unique connections that expand our everyday understanding—the decline of bees as related to the health of our soil and the quality of microbiomes within bees’ diets, the relationship of cancer to our digestive health, and more. Sit in for an enlightening discussion of the unseen but powerful factors affecting our health, our environment, and many more aspects of our lives than we could have thought possible. Panelists: Elissa Arnheimcombines her health and ecology expertise in fostering robust populations and resilient terrain in children’s guts. She helps mothers re...

78 minFEB 11
Comments
99. Bees, Guts, Soil, and Cancer: The Microbiome

98. We Are Puget Sound: Discovering and Recovering the Salish Sea

Puget Sound is a magnificent and intricate estuary, supporting an abundance of resident and migrating life—notably two iconic, interdependent endangered species: Southern Resident orcas and chinook salmon. Town Hall Seattle and Braided River presented an evening celebrating a new multimedia book and campaign We Are Puget Sound: Discovering and Recovering the Salish Seato protect and restore Puget Sound. Hear from book contributors such as Suquamish Tribal Chairman Leonard Forsman and Mindy Roberts, Director of Washington Environmental Council People for Puget Sound—as well as Orca Recovery Task Force co-chair Les Purce, and other regional Puget Sound protectors. Experience a stunning visual journey through the complex web of marine and terrestrial wildlife, regional economies of fishing and agriculture, and learn how each of us can join in protecting our common home in the Salish Sea. Mindy Robertsleads the People For Puget Sound program at Washington Environmental Council, where ...

94 min2019 DEC 30
Comments
98. We Are Puget Sound: Discovering and Recovering the Salish Sea

97. Susannah Cahalan: The Undercover Mission That Changed Our Understanding of Madness

For centuries, doctors have struggled to define mental illness—how do you diagnose it, how do you treat it, how do you even know what it is? Author Susanah Calahan made her way to Town Hall to explore the history of psychological understanding in our country with her book The Great Pretender: The Undercover Mission That Changed Our Understanding of Madness. Cahalan chronicled the 1970’s story of David Rosenhan, a Stanford psychologist who took himself and seven other people—sane, normal, well-adjusted members of society—on an undercover study into asylums around America to test the legitimacy of psychiatry’s labels. Forced to remain inside until they’d “proven” themselves sane, all eight emerged with alarming diagnoses and even more troubling stories of their treatment. Cahalan presented new research showing that very little in Rosenhan’s watershed study is exactly as it seems. She examined interviews with Rosenhan’s colleagues and peers, searches for the anonymous partici...

56 min2019 DEC 24
Comments
97. Susannah Cahalan: The Undercover Mission That Changed Our Understanding of Madness

96. Azra Raza with Leroy Hood: The Human Costs of Treating Cancer

According to oncologist Azra Raza, we have lost the war on cancer.We spend $150 billion each year treating it, yet—a few innovations notwithstanding—a patient with cancer is as likely to die of it as one was fifty years ago. Most new drugs add mere months to one’s life at agonizing physical and financial cost. In her bookThe First Cell, Raza offered a searing account of how both medicine and our society (mis)treats cancer, and how we can do better. In conversation with Leroy Hood of the Institute for Systems Biology, Raza presented a deeply moving account of the terrible burden of being her own husband’s oncologist as he succumbed to leukemia. Raza delved into the difficulties of treating cancer, offering every perspective from medical to scientific, cultural to personal. Listen in with Raza and Hood for a world-class oncologist’s devastating and deeply personal examination of cancer, and perspectives from an author who has devoted her life to making the unbearable easier to be...

71 min2019 DEC 17
Comments
96. Azra Raza with Leroy Hood: The Human Costs of Treating Cancer

Latest Episodes

105. Jonathan Berman: Anti-Vaxxers and How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement

Vaccines are a documented success story, one of the most successful public health interventions in history.Yet there is a vocal anti-vaccination movement. How can we better understand the history and concerns behind that movement? Science professor Jonathan Berman joined us via livestream with revelations from his book Anti-Vaxxers: How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement. He explained how the origins of today’s anti-vaccine movement stretch all the way back to the resistance to Britain’s Vaccination Act of 1853, and explored how the arguments made back then mirror those made today. He provided background information on vaccines and how they work, and discusses the development of new vaccines in the twentieth century and their resulting controversies. In a moment where vaccine conversations are especially heightened and fraught, listen in as Berman explores the phenomenon of the anti-vaccine movement—and suggests a strategy for countering them. Jonathan Bermanis Assistant Professor in the Department of Basic Sciences at NYITCOM-Arkansas. His writing has been featured onNew Scientist,Harvard Business Review, TEDxSanAntonio, and others. An active science communicator, he served as national cochair of the 2017 March for Science, host of the unveiling of the world’s largest periodic table of the elements, and science fair judge. You can follow him on Twitter@jonathanberman. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9780262539326 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here or text TOWN HALL to 44321.

58 min2 d ago
Comments
105. Jonathan Berman: Anti-Vaxxers and How to Challenge a Misinformed Movement

104. David Allen Sibley: What It’s Like to Be a Bird

Can birds smell? Do robins ‘hear’ worms? Is this the same cardinal that was at my feeder last year? To answer the question of what birds are doing—and why—David Sibley joined us via livestream with insight from his new book What It’s Like to Be a Bird.Sibley answered frequently asked questions about the birds we see most often, covering everything from familiar backyard birds—such as blue jays, nuthatches, and chickadees—to less common species we might still easily observe, such as the seashore-dwelling Atlantic puffin. He brings us an approachable and informative look at the lives of birds beyond our backyards, revealing fascinating new scientific research on the myriad ways birds have adapted to environmental changes. Join Sibley for a comprehensive guide that shines a light on bird behavior in ways we never knew we wanted to know. David Sibleyis the author and illustrator of the Sibley Guides and other books and apps about birds and nature. He has been an avid birdwatcher ...

52 min1 w ago
Comments
104. David Allen Sibley: What It’s Like to Be a Bird

103. Cass Sunstein: Too Much Information

How much information is too much? Do we need to know how many calories are in the giant vat of popcorn that we bought on our way into the movie theater? Do we want to know if we are genetically predisposed to a certain disease? Not necessarily, argues behavioral scientist Cass Sunstein. Drawing from findings shared in his bookToo Much Information: Understanding What You Don’t Want to Know, Sunstein joined us via livestream to investigate how information can make us happy or miserable, and why we sometimes avoid it and sometimes seek it out. He posited, that rather than focusing on a “right to know,” our focus should be on human well-being and what information contributes to it. He invites us to consider whether what we need is more information, or more clarity about what that information is achieving. Cass Sunsteinis a professor at Harvard Law School, and the author of several books, includingThe Cost-Benefit RevolutionandHow Change Happens. In 2020, the World Health Organization...

60 min2 w ago
Comments
103. Cass Sunstein: Too Much Information

102. Sophie Egan with Tim Egan: Conscious Food Choices For Ourselves and the Planet

Is organic food really worth it? Are eggs okay to eat? What does it mean if something’s labeled “Fair Trade,” or “Biodynamic,” or “Cage Free”? Health, nutrition, and sustainability expert Sophie Egan explored the world of ethical food choices we face every day. With insight that aims to revolutionize our understanding of food, Sophie drew from her book How to Be a Conscious Eater: Making Food Choices That Are Good for You, Others, and the Planet and was joined in conversation with environmental author and journalist Tim Egan. Using three criteria—is it good for me? is it good for others? is it good for the planet?—Sophie moved past fads and diets to highlight the importance of information in making informed choices amid the chaos of hype and marketing. Sophie unpacked our eating habits from four perspectives—food produced by plants, by animals, by factories, and by restaurant kitchens. She offered tips for buying produce and cutting down on food waste, and illuminates the ...

63 minAPR 7
Comments
102. Sophie Egan with Tim Egan: Conscious Food Choices For Ourselves and the Planet

101. Ross Bayton: The Gardener’s Botanical

Horticultural author Ross Bayton presented a crash course in plant history, ruminating on the origin and significance of the Latin plant names we encounter every day. Scientific plant names are an invaluable tool for those who understand them. Formed from Greek and, more commonly, from Latin root words, not only do they make it possible for gardeners and botanists to communicate, they also contain a wealth of hidden information. Bayton joined us with a deep dive into this intricate world, revealing a breathtaking array of botanical definitions and information. Drawing from his new bookThe Gardener’s Botanical, he unlocked the secrets of plants both everyday and obscure, offering unique facts, name etymology, gorgeous full color illustrations, and more. Unlock the secret (and not-so-secret) origins of the growing world around us with Bayton’s illuminating exploration of the plants we know, and some we don’t. Ross Baytonis a horticulturalist and freelance editor. His books includeR...

61 minMAR 17
Comments
101. Ross Bayton: The Gardener’s Botanical

100. Dan Esty: Big Ideas for a Sustainable Future

Sustainability has recently skyrocketed as a global priority.The 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change and the adoption of the seventeen Sustainable Development Goals through the United Nations have highlighted the need to address critical threats to our environment. But according to Daniel Esty, in the United States issues like partisan divides, regional disputes, and deep disagreements over core principles have stalled progress toward policies and initiatives that aim to build a sustainable future. Esty joined us with excerpts from A Better Planet: Forty Big Ideas for a Sustainable Future, a collection of essays on ecology, environmental justice, Big Data, public health, and climate change, all with an emphasis on sustainability. Esty offered selections that call for sustainability through actionable, bipartisan approaches based on rigorous analytical research, offered us solutions for confronting issues such as the buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, water shortages, ...

76 minFEB 25
Comments
100. Dan Esty: Big Ideas for a Sustainable Future

99. Bees, Guts, Soil, and Cancer: The Microbiome

How are the health of soil, plants, bees, and humans connected? An all-star panel of experts joined us to answer this question with a discussion of the microscopic universe at the beginning and end of our food chain—the microbiome. Delve into the intricate world of microbes present in every human, the bacteria that help us digest food, regulate our immune system, and produce vitamins essential to our health. Explore unique connections that expand our everyday understanding—the decline of bees as related to the health of our soil and the quality of microbiomes within bees’ diets, the relationship of cancer to our digestive health, and more. Sit in for an enlightening discussion of the unseen but powerful factors affecting our health, our environment, and many more aspects of our lives than we could have thought possible. Panelists: Elissa Arnheimcombines her health and ecology expertise in fostering robust populations and resilient terrain in children’s guts. She helps mothers re...

78 minFEB 11
Comments
99. Bees, Guts, Soil, and Cancer: The Microbiome

98. We Are Puget Sound: Discovering and Recovering the Salish Sea

Puget Sound is a magnificent and intricate estuary, supporting an abundance of resident and migrating life—notably two iconic, interdependent endangered species: Southern Resident orcas and chinook salmon. Town Hall Seattle and Braided River presented an evening celebrating a new multimedia book and campaign We Are Puget Sound: Discovering and Recovering the Salish Seato protect and restore Puget Sound. Hear from book contributors such as Suquamish Tribal Chairman Leonard Forsman and Mindy Roberts, Director of Washington Environmental Council People for Puget Sound—as well as Orca Recovery Task Force co-chair Les Purce, and other regional Puget Sound protectors. Experience a stunning visual journey through the complex web of marine and terrestrial wildlife, regional economies of fishing and agriculture, and learn how each of us can join in protecting our common home in the Salish Sea. Mindy Robertsleads the People For Puget Sound program at Washington Environmental Council, where ...

94 min2019 DEC 30
Comments
98. We Are Puget Sound: Discovering and Recovering the Salish Sea

97. Susannah Cahalan: The Undercover Mission That Changed Our Understanding of Madness

For centuries, doctors have struggled to define mental illness—how do you diagnose it, how do you treat it, how do you even know what it is? Author Susanah Calahan made her way to Town Hall to explore the history of psychological understanding in our country with her book The Great Pretender: The Undercover Mission That Changed Our Understanding of Madness. Cahalan chronicled the 1970’s story of David Rosenhan, a Stanford psychologist who took himself and seven other people—sane, normal, well-adjusted members of society—on an undercover study into asylums around America to test the legitimacy of psychiatry’s labels. Forced to remain inside until they’d “proven” themselves sane, all eight emerged with alarming diagnoses and even more troubling stories of their treatment. Cahalan presented new research showing that very little in Rosenhan’s watershed study is exactly as it seems. She examined interviews with Rosenhan’s colleagues and peers, searches for the anonymous partici...

56 min2019 DEC 24
Comments
97. Susannah Cahalan: The Undercover Mission That Changed Our Understanding of Madness

96. Azra Raza with Leroy Hood: The Human Costs of Treating Cancer

According to oncologist Azra Raza, we have lost the war on cancer.We spend $150 billion each year treating it, yet—a few innovations notwithstanding—a patient with cancer is as likely to die of it as one was fifty years ago. Most new drugs add mere months to one’s life at agonizing physical and financial cost. In her bookThe First Cell, Raza offered a searing account of how both medicine and our society (mis)treats cancer, and how we can do better. In conversation with Leroy Hood of the Institute for Systems Biology, Raza presented a deeply moving account of the terrible burden of being her own husband’s oncologist as he succumbed to leukemia. Raza delved into the difficulties of treating cancer, offering every perspective from medical to scientific, cultural to personal. Listen in with Raza and Hood for a world-class oncologist’s devastating and deeply personal examination of cancer, and perspectives from an author who has devoted her life to making the unbearable easier to be...

71 min2019 DEC 17
Comments
96. Azra Raza with Leroy Hood: The Human Costs of Treating Cancer
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