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68: Friends don’t let friends believe in impact factors (with Nathan Hall)


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Podcast: Everything Hertz
Episode: 68: Friends don’t let friends believe in impact factors (with Nathan Hall)
Episode pub date: 2018-09-03


This episode includes part two of a chat with Nathan Hall (McGill University), who is the person behind the ’Shit academics say’ account (@AcademicsSay), which pokes fun of all the weird stuff that academics say. Before getting to the discussion, James and Dan answer two listener questions on grants and data cleaning.

Here’s what is covered in the episode:

– People talk about papers all the time, but the grant process is not discussed openly—why?
– Speaking to your funding body’s relevant program officer
– Assembling a team that complements your weaknesses
– Data carpentry and the tidyverse
– Outlier analysis
– Nathan Hall on big publishing
– Upending the publication system by getting journals to bid for papers
– Using peer review quality to judge the quality of journals
– Debunking learning styes
– Academics chasing after celebrity and hype
– The cost of chasing academic prestige
– Using twitter hashtags like #PhDChat and #ECRchat to learn more about the experiences of other people

Links
Data carpentry https://datacarpentry.org/
The paper with detailed code https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-018-03811-x
The podcast conference https://www.soundeducation.fm/
Cern and comic sans https://www.theverge.com/2012/7/4/3136652/cern-scientists-comic-sans-higgs-boson
Shit Academics Say on twitter https://www.twitter.com/AcademicsSay
Nathan on Twitter https://www.twitter.com/prof_nch
Dan on twitter https://www.twitter.com/dsquintana
James on twitter https://www.twitter.com/jamesheathers
Everything Hertz on twitter https://www.twitter.com/hertzpodcast
Everything Hertz on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/everythinghertzpodcast/

Music credits: Lee Rosevere freemusicarchive.org/music/Lee_Rosevere/

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Moms of Science: Stories about being mothers and scientists


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Podcast: The Story Collider
Episode: Moms of Science: Stories about being mothers and scientists
Episode pub date: 2019-05-10


his week we present two stories of scientists becoming mothers.

Part 1: Heather Williams trades in her physicist labcoat for motherhood, and wonders if she can return.

Part 2: Mary Garcia-Cazarin discovers she’s pregnant just as she is offered a prestigious science policy fellowship, and worries about she can’t cope with both.

Heather Williams is a principal medical physicist at The Christie  hospital in Manchester, UK, where she oversees imaging and therapy in  the Nuclear Medicine Department and specialises in Positron Emission  Tomography. Heather is an advocate for science communication to  non-expert audiences and is passionate about supporting Women in STEM.  The latter lead her to set up ScienceGrrl back in 2012, a grassroots  national network with 10 local chapters throughout the UK that help  match scientists with speaking opportunities close to them. Williams is a  current member of the IOP’s Women in Physics group committee and  represents the Institute of Physics within the European Platform for  Women Scientists (EPWS). In 2017 she was awarded the IOP Phillips Award  for distinguished service to the IOP through the Women in Physics Group.  When she’s not working, Heather enjoys running, cycling, hiking and  spending time with her sons.   

Mary Garcia-Cazarin, Ph.D., M.S. is a Scientific Advisor for the Tobacco  Regulatory Science Program (TRSP) in the Office of Disease Prevention  at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) where she helps to stimulate  and coordinate collaborative tobacco regulatory science research; and  implementation of initiatives related to disease prevention, tobacco and  public health. Previously, Dr. Garcia-Cazarin was an American  Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science and Technology  Policy Fellow in the Office of Dietary Supplements (ODS). She is an  alumna of the Linton-Poodry SACNAS Leadership Institute (2011) and the  Advanced Leadership Institute (2017). Dr. Garcia-Cazarin is a former  SACNAS Board Member. She received her Bachelor of Science in  pharmaceutical chemistry from Universidad Veracruzana, Mexico, her  Master of Science in biology from James Madison University, in  Harrisonburg, Virginia, and her Ph.D. in pharmacology from the  University of Kentucky in Lexington. She is a passionate about training  and mentoring and an advocate of outreach programs to increase  participation of underrepresented groups in science-related fields. 

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The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, by Thomas Kuhn


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Podcast: Context with Brad Harris
Episode: The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, by Thomas Kuhn
Episode pub date: 2018-07-24

The Structure of Scientific Revolutions is a classic in the history of science, and one of the most cited books of the twentieth century. Thomas Kuhn insightfully challenged our assumptions about how science works, but his opaque style ignited a cultural movement energized around the misinterpretations that objective truth was an illusion and that scientific progress was just a conceit of western civilization. These ideas became pillars of postmodernism, and no one was more frustrated by the folly of their development than Thomas Kuhn himself. 

You can support Context on Patreon at https://www.patreon.com/context, or through https://bradharris.com.

 

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UnDisciplined: The Cognitive Anthropologist And The Research Surgeon


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Podcast: UnDisciplined
Episode: UnDisciplined: The Cognitive Anthropologist And The Research Surgeon
Episode pub date: 2019-05-03


Our world often seems to be really divided, particularly across cultures in which everyone seems to play by different rules. But today we’re going to hear from a researcher who believes there are actually seven universal moral rules that have been embraced by pretty much every society. Then, we’ll chat with a pediatric surgeon who has identified a significant warning sign for patients who may have difficulty with addiction if they’re prescribed painkillers after surgery. Joining us from the

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#448 Pavlov (Rebroadcast)


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Podcast: Science for the People
Episode: #448 Pavlov (Rebroadcast)
Episode pub date: 2017-11-17


This week, we’re learning about the life and work of a groundbreaking physiologist whose work on learning and instinct is familiar worldwide, and almost universally misunderstood. We’ll spend the hour with Daniel Todes, Ph.D, Professor of History of Medicine at The Johns Hopkins University, discussing his book “Ivan Pavlov: A Russian Life in Science.” 

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Kylie Ball on supporting early career researchers, virtual mentorship and wellbeing


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Podcast: Changing Academic Life
Episode: Kylie Ball on supporting early career researchers, virtual mentorship and wellbeing
Episode pub date: 2018-04-18

Kylie Ball is a Professor in the Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition, Faculty of Health at Deakin University in Australia. She is also Head of early- and mid-career researcher (EMCR) development and publishes a very impactful blog targeted to EMCRs called The Happy Academic. We have a wide-ranging discussion about the EMCR support initiatives she has put in place, including workshops, mentoring programs and virtual resources, as well as the blog which she talks about as a form of virtual mentorship that can have a wider reach. We explore her own strategies for physical and mental wellbeing and how to form good habits. Themes throughout are around how much there is that we can actually take control of and make choices about, and we get a good sense of how to create a kinder and more supportive culture within our faculties.

“Leadership can happen at every level. …Every researcher is leading something.”

“We forget that we’re in a career where there is so much choice and flexibility. Seeing busyness as within our choice and there are things we can do about that really helps to give that sense of control.”

“I’m a big advocate that we can all find opportunities to be kind and it’s never a wasted act.”

Related Links:

Kylie Ball – http://www.deakin.edu.au/about-deakin/people/kylie-ball

Happy Academic Blog – https://happyacademic.wordpress.com

Indago Academy – Inspiring Research Excellence. Kylie’s newly launched  development consultancy business- https://www.indagoacademy.com

Blog post: “Let’s make kindness the next academic disruption” – https://happyacademic.wordpress.com/2017/12/06/lets-make-kindness-the-next-academic-disruption/#more-877

Blog post: “the foolproof approach to saying no” – https://happyacademic.wordpress.com/2018/02/15/the-foolproof-approach-to-saying-no/

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108: My Green Lab with Allison Paradise


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Podcast: Hello PhD
Episode: 108: My Green Lab with Allison Paradise
Episode pub date: 2019-01-22

It’s Monday morning and you arrive in lab a little late. No worries, you drop your tissue culture media into the warming bath, turn on the hood, and head down the hall while things ‘warm up.’

Next stop is the -80 freezer. You dig through the drifting piles of frost and snow, around the boxes of samples with labels that wore off ages ago, and find your quarry. You throw your weight into the door, and manage to get it latched – just barely – and head to the lab.

Once there, you dump yesterday’s gel buffer down the drain and start measuring out agarose and ethidium bromide for today’s experiments. With the gel poured, it’s finally time for coffee. Then maybe you’ll get around to splitting your cells.

It may be an easy morning for a cell biologist, but it was pretty rough on the planet. This week we explore some simple tweaks this busy scientist could make to be greener and more sustainable!

It’s Easy Being Green

Allison Paradise started working in a biomedical research lab when she was in high school. On her very first day, she completed a cloning protocol and went to ask the PI where she could recycle the uncontaminated pipette tips and boxes.

Allison Paradise, CEO and Founder of My Green Lab

Her question was met with a glare of mixed astonishment and disgust.

“We don’t recycle here.”

Allison was incredulous. Recycling was second nature for her family at home – why should these clean plastics be incinerated rather than repurposed?

Over the next few years, Allison noticed other counterintuitive lab behaviors. Why were the heat blocks and water baths left on 24/7? Why had the -70 degree freezers come to be called, and set to, -80 degrees? And what about all of those laboratory chemicals that were being dumped down the drain and into the water supply.

In 2013, Allison left her industry gig to become CEO and founder of My Green Lab, a non-profit organization committed to making research science more sustainable.

My Green Lab supports programs to conserve water, energy, consumables, and to reduce the lab’s dependence on toxic chemicals. They also offer a Green Lab Certification, measuring your lab’s performance on everything from fume hoods to field work.

This week on the show, we asked Allison to share some ideas that lab scientists could do TODAY to start making a difference for the environment.

Her solutions, like putting the water bath on an outlet timer, use simple strategies for an outsized impact.

To learn more, visit MyGreenLab.org or follow them on Twitter or Facebook.

And to cool us off (as if that’s a problem in January) we sip the Copperline Amber Ale from Carolina Brewery in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. This beer takes its place as one of the first craft brews we tried way back in the day.

And don’t worry, we definitely recycled the cans!

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Inspiration: Stories about what inspires us


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Podcast: The Story Collider
Episode: Inspiration: Stories about what inspires us
Episode pub date: 2019-02-22


This week, we’re presenting two stories from scientists about the people and places that inspired them.

Part 1: Just before she leaves for her dream opportunity to teach marine science on the Red Sea, Latasha Wright gets a call that puts her plans in jeopardy.

Part 2:  Growing up, Sheena Cruickshank’s teenage older brother inspires her love of science, but then one summer he returns from university with a lump on his arm.

Latasha Wright received her Ph.D. from NYU Langone Medical Center in Cell and Molecular Biology. After her studies, she went on to continue her scientific training at Johns Hopkins University and Weill Cornell Medical Center. She has co­authored numerous publications and presented her work at international and national conferences. In 2011, she joined the crew of the BioBus, a mobile science lab dedicated to bringing hands­on science and inspiration to students from all socioeconomic backgrounds. The BioBus creates a setting that fosters innovation and creativity. Students are encouraged to ask questions, formulate hypotheses, and design experiments. Through the BioBus, Latasha was able to share her love of science with a new generation of potential scientists. Everyday that she spends teaching students about science in this transformative environment helps her remember that science is fun. She loves sharing the journey of discovery with students of all ages. In 2014, the BioBus team launched an immersive, un­intimidating laboratory space called the BioBase, a community laboratory model. At the BioBase students are encouraged to explore their scientific potential through in­-depth programming and hands­-on experimentation. Latasha has lead the efforts in establishing this community laboratory model, and hopes to build on its success in other communities. The efforts of the BioBus’ team to promote science   education to all communities in New York City has been recognized by numerous news outlets, including the WNYC science radio program Hypothesis. Additionally, Latasha has been featured as NY1’s New Yorker of the Week.  

Sheena Cruickshank graduated in Biochemistry and Immunology from the  University of Strathclyde and did a PhD in Immunology with Cancer  Research UK at the University of Leeds. She is now an immunology  Professor  in the University of Manchester and also is their University Academic  Lead for Public Engagement. Her research aims to understand how the  immune response distinguishes harm from benefit e.g. parasitic  infections versus the friendly bacteria that live in and  on our bodies. She has a focus on using her research to help develop  tools to improve patient diagnosis and management. Sheena is passionate  about communicating her research with the public and her public  engagement work is very closely linked to her research.  She co-developed resources to help educate about parasite infections  and their impact with a set of resources called “the Worm Wagon” and  focuses on enabling access to science for non-native English speakers.  She also co-developed a UK nationwide citizen science  project to understand allergies and the impacts of pollution  (@BritainBreathing). She was a AAAS Leshner Fellow and has received  awards and commendations for her outreach from organisations such as the  Royal Society of Biology, BBSRC and NCCPE and has presented  her work in the media including the radio and television.   

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