Episode 6A: Competition

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What does competition look like in different disciplines? Is it a driving force for the better or worse? We feature four Western professors, each with their own unique research areas, to speak about this phenomenon with us in this two-part series.

Episode 6A features competition in evolution and the natural world, as well as in the economics underlying our modern society.

What role does competition play in evolution by natural selection? Dr. MacDougall-Shackleton shares some interesting phenomenon resulting from the types of competition in different ecosystems.

Economics professor Dr. Zheng joins us on the show to speak about his investigation into bidding behaviour and belief updating from the perspective of auction theory.

To listen to the full episode, as played on Radio Western 94.9 FM:

Hosted by Mike Ge, Maximillian Soltysiak, and Srobona Podder.

Research review by Andrey Petropavlovskiy and Srobona Podder.

SOS 6A Team

Thank you to Srobona Podder, a 2nd year Economics student, for helping our team with research, interviewing, and hosting this episode of Sound of Science. It was fascinating to hear your perspective on this topic!

Episode 5: The search for life

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The idea of life beyond Earth is one that has fascinated many of us from a young age and has made its way into much of our popular culture. This episode, we bridge the disciplines of linguistics and physics to feature the story of our search for extraterrestrial life and how it may change how we see our human society.

Dr. Cami (Western professor and SETI scientist) introduces his research into molecular spectroscopy and how he has used it to find amino acids, basic protein building blocks, in space!

Dr. de Looze draws upon his extensive background in linguistics to discuss the basic components of communication and what a conversation with alien life may look like.

Hosted by Mike Ge, Maximillian Soltysiak, and Erik Weise.

Research review by Andrey Petropavloskiy and Erik Weise.

Episode 4: Inventing the Future

Synthetic biology is a rapidly growing field of science that is uncovering more about the molecular processes that give rise to complex life. In fact, it has developed to the point where we talk about engineering life and how this affects our greater relationship with the world around us. It is with this thought that we begin our 4th episode of the Sound of Science, covering Western University’s symposium into the fascinating, yet uncertain, world of synthetic biology.

Hosted by Mike Ge.
Research review by Andrey Petropavloskiy.

In part one, conference organizers Dr. David Edgell and Dr. Bogumil Karas share their vision for synthetic biology and how Western is involved at the forefront of the field.

In part two, we speak to a visiting biology professor from the University of Waterloo, Dr. Trevor Charles. He presents his fascinating research about how bacteria can be engineered to turn methane into plastic.

In part three, we meet a Western alumnus who is turning synthetic biology discoveries into real businesses. Ihor Boszko speaks about speaks about his unique role at Ontario Genomics.

In part four, we ask the question, “How is Synthetic biology affecting our human identity?” Dr. Juan-Luis Suarez speaks on the moral and philosophical implications of synthetic biology.


Episode 3: New Intelligence

Computer science and artificial intelligence are taking over many facets of our life and revolutionizing the way we live. Its role in scientific research is imperative to analyze huge sets of data no human researcher could examine in their lifetime. Join us in this episode as we learn about how two professors in Biology and Computer Science use this invaluable tool to make great discoveries and how they see AI shaping our future.

Interested in learning more? Visit Dr. Kathleen Hill’s website and Dr. Mark Daley’s website to read about their research in greater detail.
Hosted by Mike Ge. Interviews by Max Soltysiak and Mike Ge.

Research review by Andrey Petropavloskiy.