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CHF staff and scholars provide a behind-the-scenes guide to activities at CHF, with reflections on science education, provocative explorations of chemistry in the wider world, and much more.

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All posts in policy

Bernard Bigot on Nuclear Power

The annual Ullyot Public Affairs Lecture was held on November 20 at the Chemical Heritage Foundation. Speaking was Bernard Bigot, high commissioner of the French Atomic Energy Commission.

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Posted In: Policy | Technology

Diversities

The term diversity conjures up many meanings: diversity of peoples (multiculturalism); diversity of ideas (useful in good decision making); diversification (of markets or financial assets). Another connotation of diversity, perhaps less frequent in the common discourse, is biodiversity.

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Posted In: Policy | Technology

Board

On regular occasions the Board (CHF Board of Directors, that is) arrives in town to conduct important business. It was so this past weekend, hence no Monday blog post this week.

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Posted In: Policy

Communicating Chemistry

It would likely be a precarious day if Congress ever invited chemists to come in and talk about their work.

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Posted In: Education | Policy

Science Debate III

No, there hasn’t yet been the hoped for Science Debate between the presidential candidates. I have written about it twice before though, and like bad serialized movies, it keeps coming back.

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Posted In: Policy

Required Reading

Most discussions of energy policy wind up conceding two points: (1) that replacing carbon-based fuels with renewable ones is important because of the potential for long-term climate disruption; and (2) that carbon replacement alternatives will rely on a mixture of energy sources rather than a single solution.

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Posted In: Policy

Science and the Election

Most readers will be knowledgeable about both scientific matters and the impending U.S. presidential election. But what about the strange intersection of these two subjects?

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Posted In: Policy

Pretty Good News

Back in 2005 Harvard President Larry Summers speculated at an academic conference that women may have less innate ability than men in science and mathematics. After the predicable outrage, Summers insisted he wasn’t drawing a conclusion, only suggesting a hypothesis that could be examined.

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Posted In: History | Policy

Masters of the Universe

The U.S. National Academy of Sciences (NAS) has just published a report on the master’s degree in the sciences. (Full disclosure: I was a member of the committee that authored the report.) Originally (and cleverly, or at least so thought we committee members) the report’s title was “Mastering the Future: Educating Science Professionals for a Competitive Future.” The final version, compliant with NAS rules, is the more sedate “Enhancing the Master’s Degree in the Natural Sciences.”

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Posted In: Education | Policy

Genes and Congress

Nobody wants to be discriminated against for things they can’t control. Like your genes, for example—which you inherited from Mom and Dad, and which in turn determine your own very personalized chemistry.

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Posted In: Policy