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Event sponsored by the Institute for Hazard, Risk and Resilience (IHRR), Durham University. Organised by the Citizens’ Panel attached to the Centre for Social Justice and Community Action (CSJCA), Durham University.
This event follows on from a very successful Institute of Advanced Study-sponsored series of activities in 2012: ‘New storylines for living with environmental change: citizens’ perspectives’. During this series, a Citizens’ Panel was formed with the overall aim of developing an approach to public engagement with science – exploring the social and ethical implications of different emerging and potentially contested technological responses to ‘living with environmental change’. Our first event of 2013 was held on 7th March, and was entitled ‘Responsible Science and Public Engagement: A Scientific Dilemmas Café.’
Monday 3rd June 2013, 4.00pm – 6.00pm
Holgate Centre, Grey College, Durham University
South Road, Durham DH1 3LG. Phone: 0191 334 5900 Read more
The UK’s chief government scientist Sir John Beddington announced that world leaders need to urgently tackle climate change, especially because of increasing trends towards more extreme weather events such as floods, droughts and storms over the next 25 years. The more extreme and erratic forms of weather that the UK has experienced in recent years may become more common due to a changing climate.
Prof Sarah Curtis who is the Executive Director of the Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience was interviewed by both television and radio media recently about what can be expected for the future. Prof Curtis mentioned the importance of planning with local authorities and national planning being taken by government to adapt to a changing climate, and that focused preparation and planning are needed to cope with variable climate and extreme weather events. Read more
What led to the spread of tuberculosis in cattle and badgers in Britain? This podcast narrated by Paul Ging includes a highly informative interview with Prof Peter Atkins who led two recent studies on the subject with PhD student Philip Robinson from the Department of Geography at Durham University.
While the controversial badger cull to be implemented this summer by government has led to a polarised debate between securing the welfare of the country’s badgers and protecting farmers’ cattle, research led by Atkins provides historical insights that could help better inform policy in preventing the spread of TB.
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An interesting point to note is that the Randomised Badger Culling Trial, which is often referred to as evidence that culling badgers will control bovine tuberculosis, came to the following overall conclusion, which appears inconsistent with assertions made by government today: Read more
This video features Baroness Valerie Amos UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator and Prof Lena Dominelli, co-director of IHRR and organiser of the 2012 Breaking the Mould Conference at Durham University. Baroness Amos talks about how ‘resilience is about breaking the mold’ in order for humanitarian and development organisations to protect against natural disasters and other large-scale emergencies that require humanitarian aid. Emphasising the need to do more to build resilience to disasters, Baroness Amos and Professor Dominelli explain how investing more efforts in preparation for disasters is imperative to responding effectively to them.
Governing scientific and technological innovations is tricky business. This is primarily due to the presence of uncertainty, the risks that society must face if it chooses to intervene using methods that could either have damaging consequences, fail entirely or both. Everyone knows it’s a clique of course, but we really do ‘live in exciting times’ as humanity has at hand an array of advanced technologies at its disposal. But climate change is in a sense antithesis to technological development or at least to how it has proceeded thus far, mostly because the world is locked into using fossil fuels as its primary source of energy. Yet the controversial applications of geoengineering may prove a last resort for reducing the temperature of the planet preventing devastating environmental impacts induced by climate change. Read more