Speakers 2016

Bob Walker

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Robert (Bob) Walker is the President of the Population Institute, where he directs the organization’s advocacy and public education activities. He formerly was the Executive Director of the Common Cause Education Fund, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization working to promote open, honest and accountable government.

Bob’s talk discusses the history of population, the trends of society in forming groups and towns. This history then leads into a discussion about the world today and where we’re moving in terms of a future with scarce resources and a growing population

Simon DeDeo

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Simon Dedeo is now a professor at Carnegie Mellon, but once was an associate professor at IU. He has a Ph.D. in Astrophysical Sciences from Princeton University, a degree in Applied Mathematics in MASt from the University of Cambridge, and a bachelor’s degree in Astronomy & Astrophysics from Harvard University.

He talks about the effects of technology on the structure of society.

Adam J. Fisch M.D.

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Adam J. Fisch, M.D., received his M.D. at Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Indiana in 2004. His special interests include Sleep Medicine/EEG/EMG. Dr. Fisch is an avid educator and has lectured at many universities and has recently authored “Neuroanatomy: Draw it to Know It” for which he won the “2009 Washington University in St. Louis Leonard Berg Prize for Research During Residency” Award.

He discusses Deep-Learning Strategies and their importance in long-term memory. Specifically, he addresses the neurobiology and its practical ramifications.

Dr. Anantha Shekhar

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A world-renowned physician and clinical researcher. Dr. Shekhar is IU’s Associate Vice President for Research and Director of the Indiana Clinical and Translational Sciences Institute, IU School of Medicine. He and his team recently won a $40 million investment from IU’s Grand Challenges Program where they are going to bring the miracle of precision medicine to Indiana. They work with hospice patients and cure them by mapping the genomes of their tumors, finding the errors in the genetic code, and attacking with effective “precision” therapies tailored to his/her exact needs.

Leah Savion

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A faculty member in Philosophy and Cognitive Science at Indiana University, Bloomington. Leah specializes in Mathematical Logic, Mental Heuristics and Biases in business, law, and medicine, Rationality, Educational Psychology, and dancing. Recent publications include “Quick and Dirty Mental Operations: The Price of Adaptive Cognition”, and “Brain Power: Symbolic Logic for the novice”.

Leah discusses major misconceptions about self-deception and the mental tools we use to trick ourselves into maintaining sanity and cognitive economy.

Alexander Karagiannis

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Born in Greece, he immigrated to the United States in 1958. He graduated from Washington University in 1974 and Indiana University for his MA in 1977 and his Ph.D. in 1981 in East European History. He is now a Current Foreign Service Officer for the State Department. He has spent his entire career with the State Department in over a dozen positions including the Political-Military Officer in Turkey, the Director of the Office of UK, and the Political Chief in London.

He discusses the structure of diplomacy, the difficulties in dealing with sovereign powers, and the cultural barriers that often arise.

Euna Lee

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A South Korean-born American journalist who works for Fusion as a Creative Producer. Lee and fellow journalist Laura Ling were detained in North Korea after they crossed into the country on a mission to film a documentary. The United States Government protested the sentences and secured their releases under the leadership of President Clinton.

Euna discusses how she found humanity in the North Koreans who held her captive.  She shares this story with the hope of opening up perspectives by seeing humanity and not hatred in our “enemy.”