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This informative and entertaining bi-weekly series of audio podcasts puts the spotlight on the high-impact work of the National Academies. Focusing on a wide range of critical issues in science, engineering, and medicine, these short 10-minute episodes are a quick and easy way to tune in to the all the key findings and important recommendations made by the Academies. The National Academies consists of four organizations: the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, ...
 
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As women of childbearing age have become heavier, the trade-off between maternal and child health created by variation in gestational weight gain has become more difficult to reconcile. The Weight Gain During Pregnancy podcast looks at some of the key findings and recommendations for the Institute of Medicine report.…
 
In this podcast the National Cancer Policy Board of the Institute of Medicine examines the psychosocial consequences of the cancer experience, specifically on breast cancer in women because this group has the largest survivor population (over 2 million) and this disease is the most extensively studied cancer from the standpoint of psychosocial effe…
 
The ocean has absorbed a significant portion of all human-made carbon dioxide emissions. This benefits human society by moderating the rate of climate change, but also causes unprecedented changes to ocean chemistry. Carbon dioxide taken up by the ocean makes the water more acidic and leads to a suite of chemical changes collectively known as ocean…
 
This podcast provides a historical overview of the emergence of school meal programs and provides recommendations to update the nutrition standard and the meal requirements for the National School Lunch Program and School Breakfast Program. The recommendations reflect new developments in nutrition science, increase the availability of key food grou…
 
The ocean has greater affects on human health than the average person realizes. This report brief discusses the health and medical hazards, benefits, and potential found in the ocean's depths. Read the report online.The National Academies
 
Given the popularity of the World Cup, the Sounds of Science revisits a 2002 IOM workshop reports on head injury in young soccer players. This podcast addresses the biology of concussion, when to return a concussed player to the field, studies of soccer and football players, and the policy issues relevant to head injuries in youth sports.…
 
This podcast examines the relationship between land development patterns and vehicle miles traveled (VMT) in the United States to assess whether petroleum use, and by extension greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, could be reduced by changes in the design of development patterns.The National Academies
 
Reducing the intake of sodium is an important public health goal for Americans. Since the 1970s, an array of public health interventions and national dietary guidelines has sought to reduce sodium intake. However, the U.S. population still consumes more sodium than is recommended, placing individuals at risk for diseases related to elevated blood p…
 
Teachers make a difference. The success of any plan for improving educational outcomes depends on the teachers who carry it out and thus on the abilities of those attracted to the field and their preparation. Yet there are many questions about how teachers are being prepared and how they ought to be prepared. Yet, teacher preparation is often treat…
 
Given current demographic trends, nearly one in five U.S. residents will be of Hispanic origin by 2025. This major demographic shift and its implications for both the United States and the growing Hispanic population make Multiple Origins, Uncertain Destinies a most timely podcast. This report from the National Research Council describes how Hispan…
 
Why is communicating chemistry so difficult relative to other scientific disciplines? The Chemical Sciences Roundtable will hold a workshop on May 26-27, 2010 to examine science content, especially chemistry, on television, on the internet, in museums, and in other informal educational settings. The workshop will explore how the public obtains scie…
 
Burning coal in electric utility plants produces, in addition to power, residues that contain constituents which may be harmful to the environment. The management of large volumes of coal combustion residues (CCRs) is a challenge for utilities, because they must either place the CCRs in landfills, surface impoundments, or mines, or find alternative…
 
This podcast introduces the Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences, which organizes events and exhibitions for the public that explore the relationships among culture and the sciences, engineering, and medicine. Learn more about one of their upcoming events, the Visual Culture and Evolution Online Symposium, which brings together sci…
 
The United States spends approximately four million dollars each year searching for near-Earth objects (NEOs). The objective is to detect those that may collide with Earth. What is the true threat that we are facing and what can we do about it?The National Academies
 
Regardless of how we decide to pay for health care, we now have the tools and knowledge necessary to improve the performance of the U.S. health care system and reduce costs. Kevin Finneran, Editor-in-Chief of Issues in Science and Technology, discusses some of the strategies we could take based on the article Better U.S. Health Care at Lower Cost b…
 
This podcast offers a timely look at issues that are increasingly important in an interconnected world. It discusses the importance of foreign languages and cultural knowledge on national security and global competitiveness and it describes the challenges faced by the U.S. educational system and the federal government in trying to address those nee…
 
Description: We depend heavily on energy for a variety of modern goods and services. Yet the provision and use of that energy comes with many costs to society that are not reflected in the market price. In 2005 alone, the hidden costs of energy amounted to about $120 billion dollars in damages to human health and the environment. This podcast discu…
 
A mismatch between the federal government's revenues and spending, now and in the foreseeable future, requires heavy borrowing, leading to a large and increasing federal debt. That increasing debt raises a serious challenge to all of the goals that various people expect their government to pursue. This podcast assesses some of the options and possi…
 
What if you could clearly define in dollars saved, crashes averted, and better technology implemented the benefits of attending an conference. When it comes to the benefits of attend the Transportation Research Board's Annual Meeting, the Utah Department of Transportation can.The National Academies
 
Early childhood mathematics is vitally important for young children's present and future educational success. Unfortunately, many children's potential in mathematics is not fully realized, especially those children who are economically disadvantaged. This is due, in part, to a lack of opportunities to learn mathematics in early childhood settings o…
 
Informal science is a burgeoning field that operates across a broad range of venues and envisages learning outcomes for individuals, schools, families, and society. This podcast looks at what how and where informal science learning takes place and the benefits it can provide to all people.The National Academies
 
The internet is entering a new phase that represents a fundamental shift in how computing is done. This phase, called the Cloud, is discussed by Kevin Finneran, editor-in-chief of Issues in Science and Technology and based on the article, The Cloud, the Crowd and Public Policy by Michael R. Nelson, in the Summer 2009 issue.…
 
When policy makers and researchers consider potential solutions to the crisis of uninsurance in the United States, the question of whether health insurance matters to health is often an issue. This question is far more than an academic concern. It is crucial that U.S. health care policy be informed with current and valid evidence on the consequence…
 
Humans coexist with millions of harmless microorganisms, but emerging diseases, resistance to antibiotics, and the threat of bioterrorism are forcing scientists to look for new ways to confront the microbes that do pose a danger. This report identifies innovative approaches to the development of antimicrobial drugs and vaccines based on a greater u…
 
There is currently heightened interest in optimizing health care through the generation of new knowledge on the effectiveness of health care services. This podcast looks at some of the basic findings of the IOM report. Read the Report Online. Visit the IOM report page.The National Academies
 
As digital technologies are expanding the power and reach of research, they are also raising complex issues. These include complications in ensuring the validity of research data; standards that do not keep pace with the high rate of innovation; restrictions on data sharing that reduce the ability of researchers to verify results and build on previ…
 
Everyone--government agencies, private organizations, and individuals--is facing a changing climate: an environment in which it is no longer prudent to follow routines based on past climatic averages. People and organizations need to consider what they will have to do differently if the 100-year flood arrives every decade or so, if the protected ar…
 
The increasing popularity of blogs, social networking sites, and twitter has created many new and interactive forums for people to communicate about science. The National Academies recently invited Phil Plait, author of the blog BAD ASTRONOMY and president of the James Randi Educational Foundation to speak to us about these technologies and how the…
 
As the first of the nation's 78 million baby boomers begin reaching age 65 in 2011, they will face a health care workforce that is too small and woefully unprepared to meet their specific health needs. This podcast is based on the report Retooling for an Aging America which calls for bold initiatives starting immediately to train all health care pr…
 
The United States is increasingly dependent on information and information technology for both civilian and military purposes, as are many other nations. Although there is a substantial literature on the potential impact of a cyberattack on the societal infrastructure of the United States, little has been written about the use of cyberattack as an …
 
Pollinators- insects, birds, bats, and other animals that carry pollen from the male to the female parts of flowers for plant reproduction- are an essential part of natural and agricultural ecosystems throughout North America. For example, most fruit, vegetable, and seed crops and some crops that provide fiber, drugs, and fuel depend on animals for…
 
Public health officials and organizations around the world remain on high alert because of increasing concerns about the prospect of an influenza pandemic, which many experts believe to be inevitable. The 1918 - 1919 influenza pandemic killed more people in absolute numbers than any other disease outbreak in history. There are lessons to be learned…
 
What types of instructional experiences help K-8 students learn science with understanding? What do science educators, teachers, teacher leaders, science specialists, professional development staff, curriculum designers, school administrators need to know to create and support such experiences? This podcast takes a brief look into this increasingly…
 
When it comes to motivating people to learn, disadvantaged urban adolescents are usually perceived as a hard sell. Yet, in a recent MetLife survey, 89 percent of the low-income students claimed I really want to learn applied to them. This report brief summarizes the major findings and recommendations in this National Academies report. Read the repo…
 
China and India, both with populations of over 1 billion, are drawing increasing attention from the United States. Their growing populations and interaction with the world presents both opportunities and challenges. Is we are to gain a much-needed understandingThe National Academies
 
The effect the mechanical revolution has had on farming is and continues to be enormous. From tractors to irrigation, our way of life would be not be the same without them. This podcast looks at just a few of the innovations that has changed the face of agriculture in the last century.The National Academies
 
Over the past 50 years, thousands of satellites have been sent into space on missions to collect data about the Earth. Today, the ability to forecast weather, climate, and natural hazards depends critically on these satellite-based observations. At the request of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Research Council conve…
 
How can we know for certain when someone is up to no good? Most people will say, give them a lie detector test. But, is it truly the best, most reliable means? This weeks podcast reviews the reality of the lie detector test based on the conclusions of the report The Polygraph and Lie Detection. Read more online free.…
 
Since its opening in 1959, the St. Lawrence Seaway has provided a route into the Great Lakes not only for trade, but also unfortunately for aquatic invasive species (AIS) that have had severe economic and environmental impacts on the region. This podcast looks at research and efforts underway to reduce their effects and further invasion. Read the r…
 
Soil has a bad reputation as just dirt, but in actuality it is a veritable wild kingdom where you can find more life concentrated in the three inches below the surface than anywhere in the world above the soil. In week's podcast, we explore the importance of soil.The National Academies
 
Quality post-secondary education is no doubt important to the future of the United States, but can everyone benefit from the same type? This week's podcast looks at need for more studies for the less traveled paths of higher education.The National Academies
 
Every year, hundreds of millions of dollars are spent in the United States to improve the public understanding of engineering (NAE, 2002). Despite these efforts, educational research shows that K–12 teachers and students generally have a poor understanding of what engineers do. This podcast looks at the new NAE report addressing the need for better…
 
The federal government plays the predominant role in supporting research and development (R&D) and in establishing public policies that affect science and technology (S&T) in the United States. However, the federal government is no longer the sole focus of R&D funding and S&T policy making. State and local policy makers are unquestionably making mo…
 
This podcast provides an overview to the 2004 report Science, Medicine, and Animals. This report explains the role that animals play in biomedical research and the ways in which scientists, governments, and citizens have tried to balance the experimental use of animals with a concern for all living creatures. Read this report and the accompaning Te…
 
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