Tony Robbins Next Door: Personal Coaches Are The New High Priests of Self-Help
In a new column focused on “The Examined Life,” Matthew Nisbet investigates the twisted messages about human happiness and flourishing that dominate popular culture, offering readers a skeptical dose of anti-self-help advice. A few years ago, I moved with my wife and son to an upper-middle-class community north of Boston. As I walked around town, …
The Mindful Climate Writer: Finding My Voice in a Culture of Extremes
I spend most of my time studying and writing about climate change politics. It is often a paralyzing experience; not only is climate change a grave threat, but it is also one of America’s most polarized political debates. I have come to appreciate that avoiding the easiest, most comfortable narrative—one that narrowly appeals to a …
Against Climate Change Tribalism: We Gamble with the Future by Dehumanizing Our Opponents
This column is adapted from a speech delivered at the 2019 American Climate Leadership Summit held in Washington, D.C., May 1–2, 2019. Robbers Cave State Park in Oklahoma may be best known today for its picturesque lakes and trails, but for three weeks in 1954 the park was also the setting for one of …
Science and Society Beliefs across the Globe: A Study of Fifty-Four Countries Assesses Public Optimism and Reservations
From scientific meetings to corporate boardrooms, many leaders of society are deeply concerned about what they perceive as a loss of public faith in technological innovation and the scientific enterprise. Rising tensions over issues such as automation, gene editing, and the transition away from fossil fuels are rooted in broader conflicts related to globalization, modernization, …
DNA Is Not Destiny: Challenging the Hype over Genetic Testing
“Genetic Code of Human Life Cracked by Scientists” was the June 27, 2000, front-page headline of The New York Times. The previous day, in an event held at the White House, President Bill Clinton was joined by Francis Collins, director of the National Human Genome Project, and Craig Venter, president of Celera Genomics, to announce …
The Science of Why Yoga Quiets the Mind: Fitness Industry Hype Obscures Yoga’s True Benefits
I had been practicing yoga for a decade, but it took an unexplained injury to push me toward turning yoga into a daily routine. I had spent a brutally cold winter battling unexplained nerve pain in my legs, which doctors after a series of diagnostic tests eventually characterized as related to “muscle tension.” For years …
Talking Science and Society at Church
Let’s Put Aside Differences to Tackle Society’s Biggest Challenges
A New Way of Thinking about Climate Change and Human Progress
Una nueva forma de pensar sobre el cambio climático y el progreso humano
Ambassadors for Science
Harnessing the Power of Opinion-Leaders Across Communities
Why We Need a New Dialogue about Science, Inequality, and Society
Cuando pensamos en las raíces del antagonismo sobre la pericia científica en los Estados Unidos, a menudo nos enfocamos en el partidismo o en las diferencias religiosas.
Evolution in the College Classroom: Facilitating Conversations about Science and Religion
As surprising as this might sound, the unfortunate reality is that in many high schools across the country evolution is often avoided or covered superficially as part of a crammed science curriculum, taught by teachers who are underqualified and poorly supported.
The March for Science
Partisan protests put public trust in scientists at risk.
The Mindfulness Movement
How a Buddhist Practice Evolved into a Scientific Approach to Life…
Winning the Vaccine War
Hint: Focus on Community-Based Strategies and Avoid Denigrating Parents.
The Science Literacy Paradox
Why really smart people are often the most biased in their opinions…
The Superbug Crisis: False Beliefs about Antibiotics Are a Global Threat
Each year at least 2 million Americans battle serious bacterial infections that are resistant to one or more antibiotics, and at least 23,000 die annually as a direct result of those infections.
Political Divisions Will Affect American Beliefs about the Zika Threat.
Don’t Fear a Franken Public
Certainly if the food industry were to support mandatory GM labeling, the precise impact on consumers remains unkown. But to continue to battle against labeling rules is also risky business.
Shifting the Conversation about Climate Change
As we educate the public about scientific consensus, evidence suggests we also need to reframe the focus of debate. Americans tend to view climate change as a scientific or environmental issue, but not as a problem that affects them personally or that connects to issues that they already perceive as important.
The X-Files Effect? Research Suggests We Shouldn’t Worry so Much over the Hit TV Series
These findings came with an important caveat: The relationship between TV viewing and belief was only significant among those viewers who reported prior personal experience with the paranormal.