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Sep 22, 2018

Philanthropy Assignment: Inspire Tomorrow’s Leaders With Science

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, education, engineering, mathematics, science

In a world increasingly driven by industries that rely on advanced technical learning and innovation, fluency in STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and math) becomes more vital every day. Yet our education system isn’t keeping up. Five years ago, a Business-Higher Education Forum study found that 80% of high school students either lacked interest or proficiency in STEM subjects. Meanwhile, a college and career readiness organization known as ACT reported last year that the number of students pursuing STEM careers is growing at less than 1% annually.

The Amgen Foundation is doing something about it. As the principal philanthropic arm of Amgen, the largest independent biotechnology company, the Amgen Foundation has been committed to inspiring the next generation of scientists and innovators by making immersive science education a focus of its social investments for almost 30 years. While Amgen has reached millions of patients around the world with biotechnology medicines to combat serious illnesses, such as cardiovascular disease, cancer and migraines, the Amgen Foundation has reached more than 4 million students globally—and it is poised to launch a new program called LabXchange with the potential to reach millions more.

“As a scientist, it’s clear to me that the most effective way to learn science is by doing it,” says David Reese, executive vice president of Research and Development at Amgen and member of the Amgen Foundation board of directors. “It’s time to transform the science learning experience. We need to move from information acquisition to application and exploration, from students as passive listeners to active participants in the learning process, from teachers as knowledge transmitters to facilitators and coaches.”

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Sep 20, 2018

Interview with Apollo Ventures which funds anti-aging companies

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, education, life extension

James Peyer has been a scientist, entrepreneur, and advisor to biotechs and pharma companies, always with a specialization for developing new classes of therapeutics. James founded Apollo to support biotech entrepreneurs strategically, scientifically, and financially as they create the next generation of medicines.

James Peyer received his PhD from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, where he was a National Science Foundation Fellow and worked on the basic biology of stem cells and improving gene therapies. He founded his first company, Genotyp, at 21 to overhaul hands-on science education in the US. Genotyp’s innovative biotech equipment leasing model and instructor training earned it the approval of the White House and the National Institutes of Health. It became the first biotech company to receive funding through Kickstarter.com. He received a BA with special honors from the University of Chicago, where he studied immunology.

Discoveries in aging biology are ready for acceleration to the clinic, where they can treat age-related disease and extend healthy lifespan.

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Sep 20, 2018

The Four Best Investments We Can Make in the Global War on Poverty

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, education, health, sustainability

All three of these surprising achievements are highlighted in the Goalkeepers 2018 Data Report, written by Bill and Melinda Gates and released on Sept. 18. But the dispatch—an assessment of the progress made so far on the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals and done with the help of the University of Washington’s Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation—is anything but rah-rah. For every encouraging data point, indeed, there is one that alarms. For every promising advance in the global war on poverty and disease is a perilous outcome if we lose focus or steam.


A report from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation focuses on four key areas: Health, education, sanitation, and family planning.

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Sep 15, 2018

Japan’s science ministry seeks large budget increase, prioritizing massive neutrino detector

Posted by in categories: education, government, particle physics, science, space, supercomputing

Japan’s government is facing serious fiscal challenges, but its main science ministry appears hopeful that the nation is ready to once again back basic research in a big way. The Ministry of Education (MEXT) on 31 August announced an ambitious budget request that would allow Japan to compete for the world’s fastest supercomputer, build a replacement x-ray space observatory, and push ahead with a massive new particle detector.


Proposed successor to Super-Kamiokande, exascale computer and x-ray satellite win backing.

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Sep 12, 2018

Paywall: The Business of Scholarship Documentary in English and Russian

Posted by in categories: business, education, health

Today, we want to let you know that the documentary Paywall: The Business of Scholarship is now available in both English and Russian. This is a documentary exploring the crisis in scientific journal publication and the excessive fees that some publishers charge to access knowledge.

Holding scientific knowledge to ransom

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Sep 11, 2018

Where to place a rainwater harvesting system

Posted by in categories: education, health

On any given day, Zoubaida Salman instructs a classroom of 15-year-olds at the Sur Baher Girls School in East Jerusalem, where she has served as the science teacher and Environment and Health Coordinator for the past 22 years. One of the most important lessons comes from their backyard: water is scarce and precious in this region.

Water shortages can lead to major sanitation issues at schools, so students have to play an active role in managing it. At Sur Baher, the most significant use of is for flushing toilets, which stop working if there is not enough water. If the water runs out, school administrators must buy it from the city. In other regions, the schools even close because of .

A team of scientists with the NASA DEVELOP program is helping address these water shortages by collaborating with a nonprofit called Water Resources Action Project(WRAP). WRAP designs and constructs systems for schools in the Middle East to capture rainfall during the five-month rainy season for use later. Selecting a geographically promising area is time-consuming and tedious work though for the small, volunteer-based team. The NASA DEVELOP team is using to help WRAP more easily identify suitable locations for the rainwater harvesting systems.

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Sep 10, 2018

The smart technology turning China’s illiterate late bloomers into digital natives

Posted by in category: education

One of the biggest barriers is illiteracy, particularly among older generations.

But technology is also helping some people overcome their lack of formal education to be a part of the digital revolution.


Up until now, people without an understanding of Chinese characters and the romanised writing system pinyin have been locked out online.

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Sep 9, 2018

The largest internet company in 2030? This prediction will probably surprise you

Posted by in categories: education, futurism

A top futurist has predicted that the largest internet company of 2030 will be an online school.

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Sep 8, 2018

Should we live to be 500? Christians and secularists come together over transhumanism

Posted by in categories: education, transhumanism

Locke, though, wasn’t delivering a sermon.

The Texas pastor was moderating a panel at the first-ever Christian Transhumanist Conference, hosted last month by the Christian Transhumanist Association at Lipscomb University, a Church of Christ-affiliated school in Nashville.

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Sep 7, 2018

Why Unidentified Aerial Phenomena Are A National Security Risk And Also An Opportunity For Progress

Posted by in categories: education, government, security

A career’s worth of intelligence work for the U.S. Government has taught me one key lesson: national security is a lot like playing a game of chess. You have to anticipate your opponent’s every move in order to remain one step ahead.

Disclosing your strategy will be used against you. But if you recognize certain opportunities, you can win the match.

When I headed the government’s highly sensitive Advanced Aerospace Threat Identification Program (AATIP), I worked with a team to assess whether a particular chess piece — in this case in the form of an unfamiliar aerial technology — was a threat to our side of the chess board.

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