Sci on the Fly

A Tune-Up for the U.S. Innovation Engine

A common mantra of economists and politicians is that “innovation is the engine of U.S. economic growth,” and one of the best fuels for that engine is investments in research and development (R&D). One study estimated that for every one percent increase in R&D spending as much as $122 billion in 2017 dollars is added to the U.S. economy. However, with stagnant gross domestic R&D spending over the last decade and anemic productivity and wage growth, many economists feel that the U.S.

Speaking Fijian and A Guide to Talanoa at COP23

Bula! Willkommen! Welcome to the 23rd Convention of the Parties (COP) to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) -- led for the first time by a small Island nation, Fiji, but held in Germany. The cold, rainy German winter days contrasted with the bright colors of traditionally dressed Fijian delegates and of the Fijian National Marching Band performing on the streets of Bonn. Inside the negotiation chambers on the implementation of the Paris Agreement, Fijian Kava drinks were served to delegates during the long meetings.

PODCAST | The science of human security: Social science & violent extremism

In a world that plagued by incidents of violent extremism and terror, we are often presented with messages or news stories that focus on the leaders of extremist organizations or the perpetrators of such attacks. This type of messaging can be a distraction from more fully addressing the root cause of violent extremism through the use of human sciences such as psychology, sociology and anthropology.

What can electric bikes tell us about the future of U.S. manufacturing?

By the late 1880's there was no doubt that America's bicycle craze was in full swing. Bicycles revolutionized personal transport and introduced an unimaginable amount of freedom and mobility to Americans, especially women. New technological advances during that time such as equal-sized wheels, a chain drive, and pneumatic tires, enabled a much safer and comfortable ride further fueling the bicycle’s popularity.

PODCAST | The Science of Human Security: Building Communities Resilient to Violent Extremism

In a world that is currently plagued by incidents of violent extremism and terror, we are often presented with messages or news stories that focus on the leaders of violent extremist organizations or the perpetrators of such attacks. That type of messaging has affected the way that government and the public view violent extremism. It may be a distraction from more fully addressing the root cause of violent extremism through the use of human sciences, such as psychology, sociology and anthropology.

Private Industry in the 21st Century Space Race

The work of governements has typically been associated with human led endeavors into space, to the moon, and beyond. For example, man’s first trip to the moon was headed by the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the International Space Station is a joint collaboration between American, Russian, European, Japanese, and Canadian governments. What many often fail to realize is that the high-tech spacecraft that have taken us the moon and allowed us to remain in low earth orbit have been built by private contractors under governmental supervision.

PODCAST | Reality at the smallest scale: What is quantum physics and why should you care?

“Quantum physics” is often viewed in popular culture as being entirely incomprehensible. STPF fellows Eric Breckenfeld and Jonathan Trinastic speak with three physicists from government, academia and industry to discuss the phenomena studied in quantum physics and its relevance to our daily lives.

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