Aspen Ideas to Go Podcast

The discussion of "designer babies" often revolves around gender or hair color, but as Nita Farahany and Marcy Darnovsky explore, the medical debate is far more complicated. Farahany is Professor of Law and Philosophy, Director of Institute for Genome Sciences and Policy, Duke University; Member, Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. Should we screen embryos for disease? Should we make genetic modifications? These considerations raise ethical concerns and call into question the validity of surrounding research. The lack of regulation and oversight make this particular biotechnology frightening to some, while the potential for disease eradicating techniques excites others. But how far is too far? What are the major scientific and ethical hurdles to assuage the skeptics? Marcy Darnovsky is the executive director of the Center for Genetics and Society. Nita Farahany is professor of Law and Philosophy and director of the Institute for Genome Sciences and Policy at Duke University. She is a member of the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues.
Monday, June 15, 2015 - 05:00
From co-founding Artists for a Free South Africa, to working in failing schools to turn them around, actor and 2014 Harman-Eisner Artist in Residence Alfre Woodard has played a role in making change as an activist artist. Woodard joins the Aspen Institute's Damian Woetzel in a conversation about her career and work as an artist on the front lines.
Monday, June 8, 2015 - 05:00
New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu says that nowhere is America's crisis of violence more evident than in the African-American community.  In this talk, he asks: What’s the real cost of violence? And how do we change it? Since taking office in 2010, Landrieu has reformed the city’s police department and launched NOLA for Life, an initiative to reduce murders. And it seems to be working, at least incrementally: The murder rate in New Orleans has dropped for the third straight year. So what can the rest of the country learn from New Orleans? The Aspen Institute found this talk to be so compelling, that we’ll be taking a deeper look at Violence in America at the Aspen Ideas Festival this summer.
Monday, June 1, 2015 - 05:00
What is new about how teenagers communicate through services such as Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram? Do social media affect the quality of teens’ lives? Youth culture and technology expert Danah Boyd talks with The Atlantic’s Hanna Rosin about what Boyd sees as the major myths regarding teens’ use of social media, exploring tropes about identity, privacy, safety, danger, and bullying. Boyd argues that society fails kids when paternalism and protectionism hinder their ability to become informed, thoughtful, and engaged citizens through their online interactions. How will emerging technologies continue to impact a new generation of Americans?
Monday, May 25, 2015 - 05:00
This episode features Nicholas Burns and Strobe Talbott discussing Russia and Putinism. Burns is director of the Aspen Strategy Group and Talbott is an ASG member and president of the Brookings Institution. In this discussion, they follow up on a lecture Talbott gave at the Aspen Institute back in August. That lecture, entitled "Putinism: The Back Story", focused on Russia’s current policies, turning a lens on what Talbott asserts are the undoing of recent reforms. (Watch the full lecture: Here, Burns asks Talbott to reflect on what has changed, and what hasn’t, over the last eight months.
Monday, May 18, 2015 - 05:00