On “The State of Science” (Part 2)

For the second episode in a row, we’re turning things over to a guest host for a conversation with Holden Thorp, editor-in-chief of the Science family of journals.

Talking with Holden this time is Suman Datta, who is Stinson Professor of Nanotechnology in Notre Dame’s Department of Electrical Engineering and the director of ASCENT, a microelectronics research center funded by the Semiconductor Research Corporation and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. Holden and Suman spoke as part of a recent online series at Notre Dame called The State of Science. This is a condensed version of their conversation, which was recorded on March 1 and focused on the future of scientific collaboration.

Holden brings a distinct perspective to this topic. Even before taking on his current position as editor-in-chief of the six journals published by the American Association for the Advancement of Science, including the magazine Science itself, he was an intellectual leader, having served as provost and executive vice chancellor for academic affairs at Washington University in St. Louis and as the chancellor of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is currently Rita Levi-Montalcini Distinguished University Professor at WashU, holding appointments in both chemistry and medicine.

Holden and Suman talked about everything from the need for academic collaboration that crosses disciplinary boundaries and the very real barriers to achieving it to the way geopolitical tensions hinder knowledge discovery. We started with Suman asking about the generational questions now facing the scientific community.

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“With a Side of Knowledge” is a podcast produced at the University of Notre Dame. It features interviews with fascinating people from both Notre Dame and elsewhere that take place over brunch—or if we’re really in a pinch, coffee.

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April 1, 2021

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