The Conversation is an independent, nonprofit publisher of commentary and analysis, authored by academics and edited by journalists for the general public. On a mission “to promote truthful information and strengthen journalism by unlocking the rich diversity of academic research for audiences across America,” they publish short articles by academics on timely topics related to their research. CU Boulder provides funding as a member of The Conversation US.

A television reporter reacts to being hit by a heat ray during a demonstration of the U.S. military’s Active Denial System.

Directed energy weapons shoot painful, non-lethal beams––are similar weapons behind Havana syndrome?

Sept. 17, 2021

Electromagnetic beams of the right power and wavelength can cause pain and zap electronics. Could they also be used to disrupt a person’s nervous system? Professor Iain Boyd shares on The Conversation.

Two female engineers

For engineers, asking for help at work is influenced by gender

Sept. 13, 2021

In the male-dominated engineering industry, where women represent only about 11% of the workforce, gender influences whom individuals turn to for answers to questions. Professors Amy Javernick-Will and Tony Tong share on The Conversation.

Jewish community celebrating High Holy Days

What are the Jewish High Holy Days?

Sept. 1, 2021

Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur and a month of celebrating renewal and moral responsibility––professor and Bible scholar Samuel L. Boyd explains the history of these holy days and why they might offer consolation in times of uncertainty.

elementary students wearing masks in classroom

COVID has spurred investments in air filtration for K-12 schools––but it’s not an instant fix

Aug. 26, 2021

Air-ventilation upgrades have been badly needed in U.S. classrooms long before the pandemic. Low-tech, low-cost filtration systems can make a big difference. Professor Mark Hernandez shares on The Conversation.

flying fish

Fish fins are teaching us the secret to flexible robots, new shape-changing materials

Aug. 18, 2021

Fish fins are extremely flexible yet also strong, and understanding this useful combination of properties could inspire new morphing materials. Professor Francois Barthelat shares on The Conversation.

The aftermath of the Tulsa Race Massacre, during which mobs of white residents attacked Black residents and businesses of the Greenwood District in June 1921.

What America’s social justice activists can learn from past movements for civil rights

Aug. 16, 2021

Digging deeply into the nation’s past can help illuminate the racial struggles facing the U.S. today. Anthony Siracusa, senior director of inclusive culture and initiatives, shares on The Conversation.

Archaeologist and paleoenvironmental researcher Isaac Hart of the University of Utah surveys a melting ice patch in western Mongolia

Melting Mongolian ice reveals fragile artifacts that provide clues about how past people lived

Aug. 11, 2021

From the high Yukon to the mountains of Central Asia, melting ice exposes fragile ancient artifacts that tell the story of the past––and provide hints about how to respond to a changing climate. Assistant Professor William Taylor shares on The Conversation.

illustration of scientists creating medical treatment

New technology can create treatment against drug-resistant bacteria, adapt to antibiotic resistance

Aug. 10, 2021

Antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest public health threats in the world. New research, however, may have found a way to keep up with rapidly evolving bacteria. PhD candidate Kristen Eller shares on The Conversation.

illustration of data

Low- and middle-income countries lack access to big data analysis––here’s how to fill the gap

July 26, 2021

Data science infrastructure is sorely needed in many places. Doctors Without Borders brings medical help to nations in need, but similar efforts are relatively small for statistics. CU’s David Gunderman and Eric Vance share on The Conversation.

John Glenn looking through piles of mail

John Glenn fans dreamed of the stars––but sexism thwarted their ambitions

July 13, 2021

Recent scholarship on the early Space Age has reawakened questions about the ways gender, race, ethnicity and class shaped the U.S. human space flight program. Associate Professor Roshanna Sylvester shares on The Conversation.

Pages