Flu season is here! Approximately 5-20% of U.S. residents get the flu each year. What are scientists, public health practitioners, and the rest of us doing to limit the flu’s spread? Explore this collection of resources from the National Academies to learn about the science of influenza, its public health challenges, and what you can do to protect yourself and others:
As you look forward to next semester, consider a field trip to the Koshland Science Museum. It’s a great opportunity for students to see how science can solve real-world problems. Free school field trips are available for middle schools and high schools in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.
Interact with the Issues
Looking for the perfect gift for the science-minded kids and adults in your life? Check out the Holiday Gift Guide for Science Lovers, originally published in 2012 by the Science & Entertainment Exchange of the National Academies! Featuring gift suggestions for ladies, gentlemen, and children, the guide highlights beautiful nature-based artwork, gadgets, toys, and more.
A new report from the National Research Council says gathering survey data on “experienced” well-being – the self-reported levels of contentment, joy, stress, frustration, and other feelings people experience – would be valuable to inform policies and practices in such areas as end of life care, commuting, child custody laws, city planning, and more.
Climate change has increased concern over possible changes in Earth’s physical climate system, including its atmosphere, land surfaces, and oceans. Some of these changes could occur abruptly—within a few decades or even years—leaving little time for society and ecosystems to adapt. In a new report, an expert panel assembled by the National Research Council summarizes the current state of knowledge about abrupt climate change.
The nation’s transportation systems have a profound impact on our economy, quality of life, and resilience to disasters. Roadways, railways, airways, ports and waterways, public transit systems, pipelines, bike paths and sidewalks are the lifeblood of modern society.
The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) launched a new website for its Frontiers of Engineering Education program, which brings together some of the nation’s most engaged and innovative engineering educators in order to recognize, reward, and promote effective, substantive, and inspirational engineering education.
Concerns over the contributions of fossil fuels to pollution and climate change, in addition to other factors, have led to policies that encourage the development of renewable sources of energy such as biofuels. As biofuels become more prevalent, it is important to understand how such policies may impact human health.
Past research has suggested that memories are somewhat dynamic, rather than being set in stone. As a result, people can develop “memories” of events that never actually happened. A new study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) used MRI brain scanning to pinpoint the region of the brain responsible for flexible memory processes that allow people to revise memories to include new (and sometimes false) information.
The Global Network of Science Academies (IAP) and the InterAcademy Medical Panel (IAMP) recently issued a joint statement on "Antimicrobial Resistance: A Call for Action" highlighting the critical role that antimicrobial drugs play in today's medical practices and drawing attention to the dramatic increases in the number of pathogens developing resistance to these drugs.