Science: Avoiding Sudden Food Scarcity, Lattice Strength, Time Neurons

Addressing the problem of sudden food scarcity in US cities, and the up-and-coming field of computational social science.

In this episode:

00:45 Food shocks

Climate change, the COVID-19 pandemic, and geopolitical crises can cause food shortages. To tackle this issue, Alfonso Mejia and colleagues have modelled how to best mitigate these food shocks in US cities. Alfonso tells us about the new analyses and what steps cities could take in the future.

Research Article: Gomez et al.

News and Views: How to buffer against an urban food shortage

06:07 Research Highlights

A tiny lattice can withstand the impacts of projectiles at twice the speed of sound, and the neurons that allow humans to perceive time.

Research Highlight: Supersonic strikes leave just a dent in this super-light material

Research Highlight: The ‘time neurons’ that help the brain keep track

08:25 Computational Social Science

Big data is transforming research, and social science is no exception. This week, Nature is running a special issue on ‘computational social science’. We catch up with some of the editors involved to find out more about this up-and-coming field.

Collections: Computational Social Science

19:27 Briefing Chat

We discuss some highlights from the Nature Briefing. This time, discovering the dazzling diversity of viruses, and how China eradicated malaria.

Nature News Feature: Beyond coronavirus: the virus discoveries transforming biology

Science: It’s official: China has eliminated malaria

Travel: The Rental Car Shortage Explained (WSJ)

This summer it’s harder than ever to rent a car in the U.S., especially at popular vacation destinations. To learn what’s behind the spike in rental car prices, WSJ speaks with an industry analyst and WSJ’s Nora Naughton. Photo: Luke Sharrett/Bloomberg

Aerial Views: Kraków – Southern Poland (4K)

Kraków, a southern Poland city near the border of the Czech Republic, is known for its well-preserved medieval core and Jewish quarter. Its old town – ringed by Planty Park and remnants of the city’s medieval walls – is centered on the stately, expansive Rynek Glówny (market square). This plaza is the site of the Cloth Hall, a Renaissance-era trading outpost, and St. Mary’s Basilica, a 14th-century Gothic church.

Environments: Blue Oak Woodlands Of Sequoia National Park (Podcast)

Morning News: Syria & UN Aid, Hong Kong & Airbnb Restrictions In France

The latest on the UN Security Council showdown over humanitarian aid for Syria. Plus: we find out about Hong Kong’s chief executive Carrie Lam’s call for parents to monitor their children’s political beliefs and the French cities that are imposing restrictions on Airbnb.

Paris Walks: Pont Neuf Bridge And Samaritaine

The Pont Neuf is the oldest standing bridge across the river Seine in Paris, France. It stands by the western point of the Île de la Cité, the island in the middle of the river that was, between 250 and 225 BC, the birthplace of Paris, then known as Lutetia and, during the medieval period, the heart of the city. 

La Samaritaine is a large department store in Paris, France, located in the first arrondissement. The nearest métro station is Pont-Neuf, directly in front at the quai du Louvre and the rue de la Monnaie.