Update for Monday 23rd January 2017

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Dr Gordon Sanghera, CEO Oxford Nanopore Technologies

DNA is in every living thing and from this information you can learn about the identity of an organism, whether it is changing, whether it is healthy or diseased. As technologies to make DNA analysis become cheaper and smaller, the access to this information will spread from a small number of elite laboratories to being in the hands of anyone including consumers, citizen scientists, teachers, doctors and industries. Great benefits to society are possible through personalised medicine, environmental monitoring, self-quantification and outbreak control. With this comes potential impact on society that needs to be contemplated. Gordon will outline the journey from an academic technology conception to delivery of a disruptive technology.

Registration required.

View on liverpool.ac.uk

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This free seminar entitled, A Force for Good? How the criminal justice system can support the public’s health, explores the interrelationship between the criminal justice system and public health, and discusses what can be done to improve partnership working to achieve better health and social outcomes.

The police and criminal justice services have always had a frontline role to play in response to issues around public health, in particular with those related to illegal drugs. Police and Crime Commissioners (PCC) have been tasked with improving partnership working with other organisations such as councils and the NHS to ensure a holistic approach is taken to such issues, but this must also be balanced against law enforcement priorities. Recently, some PCCs have publicly deprioritised actions against some types of drug offence in order to focus resources elsewhere, but this is far from widespread.

Registration required.

View on ljmu.ac.uk

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What makes a ghost? GHost is a visual arts and creative research project which explores the nature of ghosts both metaphorically and practically in its activities. Serving as a supporting platform (or host) GHost aims to enable invited guests to visually and conceptually manifest and interrogate the idea of the ghost. The project takes its title from a work by Marcel Duchamp: “A GUEST + A HOST = A GHOST” Marcel Duchamp (1953).

For GHost Hosting 17, No Such Thing As Gravity artist Sarah Sparkes continues this programme of research seminars with an interdisciplinary seminar and performance event exploring the concept of ‘a formula for ghost making’, focused around faith, belief, and religious practice. How do spirits and ghosts contribute to or affect different religions and beliefs? How are practices used to embody, evoke or communicate these notions?

Sparkes will be joined by Professor Chris French, professor of Psychology and founder of the Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit (APRU) at Goldsmiths, specialising in the psychology of paranormal beliefs and experiences, cognition and emotion; and by Christian Weaver, a specialist in ethnomusicology and musician, composer and practitioner of ritual drumming. Artist Birgitta Hosea will also present Medium, a site-specific performance in which the artist takes the role of a techno-medium.

Registration required.

View on merseysideskeptics.org.uk

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By Dr Rob La Frenais, curator of No Such Thing As Gravity, and Professor Chris French, professor of Psychology and founder of the Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit (APRU) at Goldsmiths.

Find out more about the concepts behind these works, and how we can explore the ever-changing limits of science, through art.

Chris French is a psychologist specialising in the psychology of paranormal beliefs and experiences, cognition and emotion. He is the head of the University of London's Anomalistic Psychology Research Unit and appears regularly in the media as an expert on testing paranormal claims.

Rob La Frenais is an independent writer, editor and contemporary art curator, working internationally and creatively with artists entirely on original commissions. From 1997 to 2014 he was based at The Arts Catalyst, where he developed an ambitious artistic programme and was responsible for some of the most innovative art and science exhibitions and events in the world.

Registration required.

View on fact.co.uk

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Drawing on the work of Deleuze and Guattari and of Foucault, Maurizio Lazzarato, a leading contemporary critical theorist, develops a dual understanding of subjection: on the one hand, he is interested in subjectivation, or the production of subjects; on the other, he is drawn to the way in which, through machinic enslavement, fragments of our bodies or our attention are put to work by larger machineries, the latter not simply being technical machines, but also potentially involving them.
While the former mode of subjection typically involves language (named roles, rewards and so on), the latter relies on what, drawing on Guattari, Lazzarato calls asignifying semiotics (charts, algorithms, diagrams, data, graphs etc.). Critical theory, Lazzarato notes, has endlessly discussed subjectivation and language but has almost entirely ignored machinic enslavement and asignifying semiotics despite their crucial role in contemporary subjection. He also notes that, with its attention to the visual and the material, cinema is particularly suited for engaging with the non-linguistic and the interface between the human body and different socio-economic machines. It could be argued, however, in a way that may seem deeply paradoxical, that the machinery of cinema, its focus on individual subjects and their stories and words, endlessly works to block this potential. Picking up this latter point, this paper will scrutinize some films that engage, or fail to engage, with the machinic and asks what we can learn from them.

Registration required.

View on ljmu.ac.uk

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Led by Dr Paul Jones, Bluecoat's Sociologist-in-Residence for 2017, this introduction to theories and themes of urban social life looks at how cities develop and shape the lives of their inhabitants. The most acute challenges of our age centre on cities, which have always been sites where power is concentrated, and starkly unequal access to resources are manifest. It was against this backdrop that early sociologists were fascinated by the intensified and immersive social life of major nineteenth and early-twentieth century cities such as Berlin, Chicago, London, and Paris. This course traces into the contemporary context the intellectual influence of a group of early thinkers who between them laid important foundations for what has come to be known as urban sociology.

The course addresses three key themes: theories of the urban, which seek to understand the distinctive social life of cities; social divisions and how they play out in particular cities globally; political interventions that have sought to redress social problems in cities.

In general terms, the lecture course will respond to key questions such as:

How do cities develop?
How does the city shape the realities of people who use its spaces?
What are the implications of approaching the city from a sociological perspective?

Course will go every Tuesdays from 31 Jan 2017 through 30 May 2017.

Registration required.

View on thebluecoat.org.uk

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Stereotactic radiotherapy is used for the treatment of small tumours within the body utilising high doses at each treatment session and a small number of sessions. This lecture will address both the rational for
stereotactic radiotherapy and the platforms used to deliver it.

Registration required.

View on liverpool.ac.uk