Lisa Kaltenegger: Looking for Life on Other Earths
Is there life in the universe beyond planet Earth? It's the question everyone, including Alan Alda, wants to understand. In this episode, Alan asks Dr. Lisa Kaltenegger, the head of the world-renown Carl Sagan Institute, about life in the cosmos. What Dr. Kaltenegger has to say is surprising and inspiring. Before you stare up at the sky tonight, be sure to hear what Dr. Kaltenegger has to say about which of the billions of planets might be more like ours than we ever thought possible.
Jo Handelsman on the Surprising News That the Earth is Running Out of Dirt
What do microbes, the soil, and climate change all have in common? Dr. Jo Handelsman studies microbes at the University of Wisconsin. She researches the vast array of microbes that live on us or in us, and also the even greater number that lurk in the soil beneath our feet. In this fascinating episode, Alan Alda talks with Dr. Handelsman, who served as the previous science advisor to President Barack Obama and as the Associate Director for Science at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, about why both the microbes within and below us are so important to our survival. Alan and Dr. Handelsman begin this conversation talking about the weather, which these days often leads to talk that’s far from small.
All Shook Up: Dr. Lucy Jones on How to Tell People the Big One is Coming
Dr. Lucy Jones is a seismologist, who has a talent for translating the scary uncertainties of earthquakes into a language the rest of us can relate to. She is now putting her communication skills to work not only to help communities prepare for the inevitability of future earthquakes in her home state of California, but also for the inevitability of global climate change. In this episode, Alan Alda speaks with Dr. Jones about the best ways to help people prepare for natural disasters.
Human Connection Through Nature: Discussing Seven Worlds, One Planet
In this special bonus episode of Clear+Vivid, BBC America’s Executive Director Courtney Thomasma and Executive Producer of Seven Worlds, One Planet’s Jonny Keeling speak with Alan Alda about the surge in popularity of nature programming and how audiences around the world have connected to the projects that the BBC Studios Natural History Unit has produced in partnership with BBC America. Courtney discusses a recent study demonstrating that watching nature programming delivers many of the same benefits as direct experience with nature, and that these benefits are particularly needed at a time when people are more connected to technology than the natural world. Jonny discusses the production across the seven continents and how they shape the extraordinary animal behavior and biodiversity we see today. The series reveals how these unique worlds gave rise to the extraordinary diversity of life on earth and how that precious diversity is being lost. Clear+Vivid returns after the holiday break with new episodes starting Tuesday, January 7th!
Jamil Zaki on Empathy and How to Hack It
Dr. Jamil Zaki is a Stanford scientist who has a way for you to sharpen you empathy skills. It’s a little like going to the gym to strengthen your muscles and improve your flexibility. In fact, he calls it the "empathy gym". It's not an actual place you can go to, but rather, it's things you can do to get a work-out for those empathy skills. That’s something we all seem to need - now more than ever. As Dr. Zaki explains to Alan Alda in this episode, we’re not stuck with the level of empathy we came in with. We can exercise it and raise it. We can use this virtual gym to improve our ability to read other people and to connect with them — which makes Dr. Zaki the perfect guest for Clear+Vivid.