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The United States’ population of older adults is projected to double by 2050. This unprecedented demographic shift has wide-ranging implications for our society as demand grows for programs and services tailored to the needs of older adults. As many quickly discover, navigating the patchwork of medical, financial, social, and legal systems needed to meet one’s needs in retirement can be a burden requiring complex decision-making in an uncertain environment.
This is a challenge for even the most sophisticated consumers and there is particular concern about older adults navigating these decisions, as converging neuroscientific and economic research indicates that many cognitive skills decline with age—and age is a principal risk factor for impairing conditions like Alzheimer’s disease and stroke. Given this body of evidence, many advocate for stronger protections for adults from fraud and exploitation. At the same time, persistent ageism and common misperceptions about the prevalence of cognitive impairment in older adults raise concerns about whether well-intentioned attempts to protect older adults risk depriving them of their rights to make autonomous decisions.
Please join David Faigman in conversation with special guests Daniel Marson and Winston Chiong to discuss current and emerging scientific research about how we make decisions as we age, how physicians assess our capacity to make decisions, and the legal and ethical implications for families and society. Recorded live at the Exploratorium in 2015. Furiously reactive, fluorine has a ferocious appetite for attracting electrons from other elements, and a fearsome habit of killing chemists. Due to the strength of its bonds, fluorine is found almost exclusively in compounds such as the colorful mineral fluorite. Early attempts to isolate the element were met with injury and death from explosions, corrosive burns, and poisonous fumes. In 1886, the treacherous gas was at last isolated by Henri Moissan, whose innovative processes are still in use today. Recorded live at the Exploratorium 2015.
Earth, water, air, fire: our world is ruled by oxygen, the third most abundant element in the universe. Originating inside of stars, oxygen is scarce on planets outside our own. It comprises roughly half the mass of Earth’s crust and a fifth of its atmosphere. Nonmetallic and highly reactive, oxygen is key to combustion and corrosion, and forms stable bonds with almost every element, notably hydrogen (H2O) and itself. Recorded live at the Exploratorium in 2015.
Earth’s oxygen is produced in equal measure by terrestrial vegetation and microscopic life in the sea. Explore the profound influence of phytoplankton on the atmosphere with Exploratorium scientist Jennifer Frazier, and learn how their populations are changing along with our climate. Investigate oxygen’s physical properties and follow the history of its discovery, as well as its more breathtaking applications. Join us for an intriguing evening of discussion about climate change and technology. The French-American Climate Talks (FACTS) is a conference series organized by the Embassy of France in the United States, and the Exploratorium is proud to host the San Francisco chapter. Don't miss this opportunity to see renowned scientists, prominent industry figures, and top entrepreneurs gather.
The Science of Sharing Forum on June 6, 2015 featured Dr. Shachar Kariv, Benjamin N. Ward Professor of Economics and Economics Department Chair at UC Berkeley. He has been a visiting scholar at Stanford University, the Institute for Advanced Studies at Princeton, the European University Institute, the University of Oxford, and the Norwegian School of Economics. Much of his research focuses on social networks, behavior under uncertainty, and decisions about sharing and giving. Emerging from inside of stars, carbon is the fourth most abundant element in the universe, and the basis for all life on Earth. Polyamorous, it loves to bond, exchanging four of its electrons with atoms of itself and other elements to create an endless variety of chemistry, from DNA chains to soccer-ball shaped fullerenes to atom-thick sheets of graphene. As diamond, carbon is hard and abrasive, as graphite, soft. When its bonds are broken, carbon readily moves from one partner to the next, cycling between oceans, atmosphere, flora, fauna, soil, rocks, and fossil deposits deep below ground. Beck Tench and Elizabeth Fleming led the development of Experimonths, social-media activities that brought Science of Sharing to the wider world. Beck Tench is an educator, designer, and technologist who works with museums, libraries, and other cultural institutions to embrace risk-taking, creativity, and change. Elizabeth Fleming is Director for Learning Environments at the Museum of Life and Science. She plays a key role in exhibit design and evaluation and is a strong advocate for museum cultures fostering lifelong learning and science as a way of knowing.
Dr. Hugh McDonald is a Project Director, Senior Science Writer, and Associate Curator for the museum’s Osher West Gallery, which focuses on the interplay among science, society, and culture. He is a social psychologist and Principal Investigator of the Science of Sharing project.
Dr. Jennifer Jacquet, Assistant Professor in the Department of Environmental Studies at New York University, is an environmental social scientist. Much of her work focuses on transboundary cooperation issues such as overfishing, climate change, and wildlife preservation—challenges that depend in part on negotiation, communication, and trust, concepts at the heart of Science of Sharing.
Dr. Athena Aktipis is a cooperation theorist and theoretical evolutionary biologist working at the intersection of social psychology, biology, anthropology, and medicine. She is Assistant Professor of Psychology at Arizona State University and co-founder of the Center for Evolution and Cancer at UC San Francisco. She is particularly interested in cooperation in large complex systems, such as multicellular organisms and human societies.