Interactions between Science and Society
Science and scientists do not exist in a vacuum. The interactions between science and society are complex and constantly evolving, so even the basic expectations about the role of science or its societal benefits continue to be re-negotiated. These articles describe different facets of science and scientists interacting with culture and society.
- Arrogance—A Dangerous Weapon of the Physics Trade? by J. Murray Gibson, Physics Today
- Put a Little Science in Your Life by Brian Greene, New York Times
- Science and Government by John H. Marburger III, Physics Today
- Scientific Elites and Scientific Illiterates by David Goodstein,
Sigma Xi forum on "Ethics, Values, and the Promise of Science"
- Belief and Knowledge—A Plea About Language by Helen Quinn, Physics Today
- God's Rays by Bryce DeWitt, Physics Today
- Laws of Nature, Source Unknown by Dennis Overbye, New York Times
- Science and the Islamic World—The Quest for Rapprochement by Pervez Hoodbhoy, Physics Today
- New Products Bring Side Effect: Nanophobia by Natasha Singer, New York Times
- The Larger World of Nano by Cyrus C. M. Mody, Physics Today
- Cultural Sensitivity in Technology by Koranteng Ofosu-Amaah, The Best of Technology Writing
- The Entangled Dance of Physics by Stephen G. Benka, Physics Today
When Science Becomes Political
Science does not claim to hold all the answers, but research often provides critical evidence for making political decisions. Scientists then are faced with a difficult task of presenting the complex and technical issues to the general public. The difficulty of such communication is sometimes compounded when the expert community arrives to different interpretations, which can then confuse rather than clarify the political debate.
- Trend-spotting: Physics in 1931 and Today by Spencer Weart, Physics Today
- Toward a Synthesis of the Newtonian and Darwinian Worldviews by John Harte, Physics Today
- Solar Energy Conversion by G. W. Crabtree & N. S. Lewis, Physics Today
- The Physics of Climate Modeling by Gavin A. Schmidt, Physics Today
- The Hydrogen Economy by G. W. Crabtree, M. S. Dresselhaus & M. V. Buchanan, Physics Today
- Transforming the Electric Infrastructure by C. W. Gellings and K. E. Yeager, Physics Today
- The Chinese Nuclear Tests, 1964–1996 by Thomas C. Reed, Physics Today
- Environmental Consequences of Nuclear War by O. B. Toon, A. Robock & R. P. Turco, Physics Today
Diversity in Science
Diversity is definitely a hot-button issue in science, just as it is in society at large. The authors of the following articles debate why (and whether) science would benefit from diversity and how it can be best achieved.
- Diversity in physics by Shirley M. Malcom, Physics Today
- What Works for Women in Undergraduate Physics?
by Barbara L. Whitten, Suzanne R. Foster, and Margaret L. Duncombe, Physics Today
- In ‘Geek Chic’ and Obama, New Hope for Lifting Women in Science by Natalie Angier, New York Times
- A New Frontier for Title IX: Science by John Tierney, New York Times
- Women in Science: The Battle Moves to the Trenches by Cornelia Dean, New York Times
- Promoting Physics and Development in Africa by Edmund Zingu, Physics Today