The State of Science
What the Future Holds and the Scientists Making It Happen
About this book
New research and innovations in the field of science are leading to life-changing and world-altering discoveries like never before. What does the horizon of science look like? Who are the scientists that are making it happen? And, how are we to introduce these revolutions to a society in which a segment of the population has become more and more skeptical of science? Climate change is the biggest challenge facing our nation, and scientists are working on renewable energy sources, meat alternatives, and carbon dioxide sequestration. At the same time, climate change deniers and the politicization of funding threaten their work. CRISPR, (Clustered Regularly Interspaced Short Palindromic Repeats) repurposes bacterial defense systems to edit genes, which can change the way we live, but also presents real ethical problems. Optogenetics will help neuroscientists map complicated neural circuitry deep inside the brain, shedding light on treating Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease. Zimmer also investigates phony science ranging from questionable “health” products to the fervent anti-vaccination movement. Zimmer introduces readers to the real people making these breakthroughs. Concluding with chapters on the rise of women in STEM fields, the importance of US immigration policies to science, and new, unorthodox ways of DIY science and crowdsource funding, The State of Science shows where science is, where it is heading, and the scientists who are at the forefront of progress.