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Reflections On Science:

Scientists and other thinkers talk about science and society and the connection between the two.

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Reflections On Science

PM’s Chief science advisor on sugar, obesity and taxes

Posted in Reflections On Science on July 30th, 2015.

The Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor, Prof Sir Peter Gluckman, spoke this morning on the Paul Henry Show discussing the issue of taxes on unhealthy food. You can watch the interview by clicking on the image below.

Continue reading “PM’s Chief science advisor on sugar, obesity and taxes

Science, celebrity and social media collide in vaccination debate

Stuff.co.nz’s Katie Kenny reports on an online furore over vaccination kicked off by actor Jim Carrey, but further fuelled by Kiwi star Jemaine Clement. An excerpt (read in full here) Comedian Jemaine Clement criticised for tweeting ‘nonsense’ in anti-vaccination rant One of New Zealand’s top comedians has been criticised by a health expert for his anti-vaccination […]

July 2nd, 2015 Read full Story

Ecstasy not so safe – Leo Schep

Dr Leo Schep, a toxicologist at the National Poisons Centre, University of Otago, argues against claims that MDMA is relatively safe and could be regulated in New Zealand, in an opinion piece on the New Zealand Herald website. An excerpt (read in full here): Leo Schep: Ecstasy not the safe party drug advocates claim In […]

June 23rd, 2015 Read full Story

Dr Anne Galloway on live animal shipments

The government hasn’t been upfront about the international transport of livestock, according to Dr Anne Galloway, a senior lecturer in design anthropology at Victoria University Wellington. She offers her thoughts on the shipment of live animals in the opinion pages of the Dominion Post. An excerpt (read in full here): Time to come clean on […]

June 19th, 2015 Read full Story

Call off the Hunt – Fiona Fox on Tim Hunt

Fiona Fox, Director of the UK Science Media Centre, writes on her blog about the recent scandal around Nobel laureate Prof Tim Hunt’s sexist public comments at a conference. Below is an excerpt, with the full blog available here. Call off the hunt Am I the only one who feels sorry for Tim Hunt? Judging […]

June 15th, 2015 Read full Story

Trade deals and healthcare – Prof John McMillan

On the university of Otago Bioethics Centre blog, centre Director Prof John McMillan writes about the leaked details of the Trans Pacific Partnership negotiations that relate to PHARMAC and the health system in New Zealand. An excerpt (read in full here): ‘Fairness for Healthcare Technologies’: some detail on the risks to PHARMAC at last? Calls […]

June 12th, 2015 Read full Story

Top 10 new species announced for 2015

A cart wheeling spider, a wasp with a killer maternal instinct and a feathered dinosaur are just some of the weird and wonderful organisms included in the top 10 new species of 2015, announced by the International Institute for Species Exploration this week. The Top 10 list was started by the Institute in 2008 to increase public awareness […]

May 22nd, 2015 Read full Story

Nigel Latta blows away stereotypes in the Weekend Herald

Jamie Morton interviewed Nigel Latta, the presenter of the eponymous ‘Nigel Latta Blows Stuff Up’ TV Show,  for the Weekend Herald. An excerpt (read in full here): Why Nigel blows stuff up We think of him as a celebrity shrink, the parenting guru, the self-styled TV guinea pig who once voluntarily spent a grim night […]

May 19th, 2015 Read full Story

Disasters: Intervention is the key – Kelvin Berryman

What do we really mean when we talk about  reducing or managing the risk of disaster? Dr Kelvin Berryman, Director of the Natural Hazards Research Platform, has written a new blog post reflecting on the outcomes of a high profile UN conference on disaster risk reduction. An excerpt (read in full here): A mandate for […]

March 20th, 2015 Read full Story

The toxicology of 1080 – Ian Shaw

Writing in the Press, Prof Ian Shaw clearly lays out the toxicology of 1080, the pest control poison that is making headlines after an unknown person threatened to use it to contaminate infant formula in New Zealand. An excerpt (read in full here): How toxic is 1080? Professor Ian Shaw explores why and how 1080 […]

March 13th, 2015 Read full Story


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