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UnDisciplined: The Community Ecologist And The Mathematical Physicist

This week on UnDisciplined, we're talking about community ecology and string theory.

This week on UnDisciplined, we're talking to a researcher who's demonstrated that some insects may actually benefit from pesticides. Then, we'll chat with a string theorist who is uncoupling ideas about the universe faster than you can say "Nikulin involution."

And after that, of course, we'll bring them together to try to build some connections between two very different areas of research. 

Edd Hammill is the principal investigator at the Spacial Community Ecology Laboratory at Utah State University and the authors of numerous papers that reveal the ways organisms are impacted as dynamic communities by our ever-changing world. 

Also joining us from Utah State University if Andreas Malmendier, who's been on a tear lately, with seven papers published in areas ranging from six-lin configurations to Nikulin involutions in string theory. 

Matthew LaPlante has reported on ritual infanticide in Northern Africa, insurgent warfare in the Middle East, the legacy of genocide in Southeast Asia, and gang violence in Central America. But a few years back, something donned on him: Maybe the news doesn't have to be brutally depressing all the time. Today, he balances his continuing work on more heartbreaking subjects by writing books about the intersection of science, human health and society, including the New York Times best-selling Lifespan with geneticist David Sinclair and the Nautilus Award-winning Longevity Plan with cardiologist John Day. His first solo book, Superlative, looks at what scientists are learning by studying organisms that have evolved in record-setting ways, and his is currently at work on another book about embracing the inevitability of human-caused climate change with an optimistic outlook on the future.