(25) posts under "Process of Science"


A reviewer at the National Institutes of evaluates a grant proposal. (Center for Scientific Review, National Institutes of Health)

Peer review: New approaches to an old system

July 23, 2014

A scientist’s reputation and funding for research can hinge on recommendations by other scientists in the centuries-old peer review process. To ensure a credible body of scientific knowledge, research papers and proposals are evaluated by other...


purple nut sedge

Studying Food and Culture with Chemistry

July 18, 2014

Earlier this week a team of researchers from the United Kingdom, Italy and Spain published a paper in the journal PLOS ONE with new details about the diets of ancient people who lived in what is...


white lab mouse

Fixing (the Other) Gender Bias in Scientific Research

May 16, 2014

You’ve probably heard about research indicating that–despite significant progress–there is still a gender gap in science. Women are underrepresented in many STEM fields. They may face subtle biases from professors and potential mentors. And, on average,...



A downhill skier races in the 2010 Olympic games. (Credit: Jon Wick)

Putting Error Bars on Olympic Gold

February 26, 2014

This past weekend, the 22nd Olympic winter games drew to a close in Sochi, Russia, capping off 16 days of sweat, glory, and tears. Nearly 3,000 athletes from 88 countries competed in almost 100 different events,...



An African Globe Lily Cell During Mitosis

From Tiny Cells, Mighty Organisms Grow

November 27, 2013

It’s hard to imagine that each of us–the millions of cells that make up our our bones, muscles, blood vessels, organs, and the rest of of our complex, living bodies–had such tiny, humble beginnings. But all...


The route of the 1858 transatlantic telegraph cable. Source: Frank Leslie's Illustrated Newspaper, August 21, 1858 (public domain).

Nov. 18, 1929: The Day the Cables Broke

November 20, 2013

Today, a veritable superhighway of data rushes below the surface of the frigid North Atlantic. Every second, thousands of gigabytes whiz back and forth between North America and Europe on one of dozens of telecommunication cables...


Cooperation can also be a driver of evolution.

Survival of the most cooperative?

October 1, 2013

In discussions of evolution, the phrase “survival of the fittest” is uttered so often that it would be easy to assume competition among organisms is the only driver of evolutionary change.  But in fact, cooperation among...


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Heavy Rains Down Under Briefly Masked Sea-Level Rise

August 23, 2013

From late 2010 to early 2011 — the summer months in Australia — it poured. In fact, that season marked the midpoint of the wettest two-year period on record for the country; huge swaths of the...