Ben Shepard
Ben Shepard

Science & Society News

Learn what is happening inside the Duke Initiative for Science & Society. Stay up-to-date on our research, events, and student activities.

Sun, Nov 17

Four Ways to Fix Social Media’s Political Ads Problem — Without Banning Them

Twitter announced the details of its new political advertising policy on Friday, and once it goes into effect this month, politicians won’t be able to run false ads on Twitter. But they also won’t be able to run ads that correct the spread of misinformation.

Wed, Oct 16

Doing Business in China: What the NBA Can Learn from Big Tech

Last week’s NBA controversy ignited widespread public conversation about the perils of doing business in China. Tech companies are all too familiar with the implications. The NBA might learn from their playbook.

Tue, Oct 15

Duke Launches Center to Explore Science and Technology Policy

DURHAM, N.C. — The Center on Science & Technology Policy at Duke University will explore the impact of emerging technologies on our society and develop new approaches for regulating those technologies.

The center, a newly launched collaboration with The Duke Initiative for Science & Society and Duke’s Sanford School of Public Policy, will serve as an interdisciplinary hub for science and technology policy analysis, while also fostering deeper ties between the university and local and global tech communities.

Directing the center is Matt Perault, who will have a joint faculty appointment in the Sanford School and in Science & Society. Perault previously served as a director of public policy at Facebook, where he led the company’s global public policy planning efforts on issues such as competition, law enforcement and human rights, and oversaw public policy for WhatsApp, Oculus and Facebook Artificial Intelligence Research. Prior to joining Facebook, Perault was counsel at the Congressional Oversight Panel. He holds graduate degrees from Duke’s Sanford School and Harvard Law School.

“An academic institution can play an instrumental role in translating concerns about our technology services into concrete policy options that address potential unintended consequences of technology and social media,” Perault said. “My hope is that the center will be sufficiently nimble to tackle new policy issues as they emerge.”

Judith Kelley, dean of the Sanford School, said Perault’s appointment reflects the school’s growing technology expertise, interdisciplinary connections and innovative approach.

“Technology is in the foreground of so many decisions today, including policy. Matt Perault’s faculty appointment will contribute to knowledge on key research questions around technology and policy, as well as national and international security,” Kelley said. “We are thrilled that an alumnus of our nationally ranked Master of Public Policy program with expertise working in major technology companies and for the government is returning to Duke. In addition, his role as director of the new center is a wonderful example of the value Sanford places on our interdisciplinary and applied work.”

In addition to engaging with regional and global corporate, government, academic and nonprofit stakeholders on issues of science and technology policy, the center will expand Duke’s curriculum offerings in science and technology policy and continue to develop SciPol.org, which tracks active legislation, regulation and court judgments.

Mon, Oct 14

Dr. Andrew Aghapour at Duke: Science, Religion and the Art of Storytelling

October’s SciComm Lunch & Learn event brought together the worlds of science and comedy, for a really fun hour of discussion. Watch the full talk here.

Mon, Oct 07

Inaugural Duke STEAM Forum Brings Together the Sciences, Arts, and Humanities

If you were in the Ruby on September 18, you caught a glimpse of the beginning of something big…

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