Spring 2021, Features

animated cover of scientific icons

Good Science Changes: That's a Good Thing

We might take for granted our knowledge that the earth is round or how electricity works. But these were once debated subjects, and we’re still learning new things about even the foundational aspects of science, things we might take for granted. At its best, science changes because the world changes. Read more

Dean F. DuBois Bowman, University of Michigan School of Public Health

From the Dean: Let's Talk Science

Dean F. DuBois Bowman

We’ve been watching science change daily during the pandemic. For many, shifts in scientific understandings are a normal part of the process. For others, science’s fluidity provides an access point for criticism. How do we communicate that change is part of the scientific process and lead wherever change is needed? Read more

Hand holding a vial of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at Michigan Medicine

New Vaccines for a Novel Virus: Insights from Coronavirus and Vaccine Experts

Conversations with Arnold S. Monto and Emily Toth Martin

From duration of immunity to safety pauses, vaccine experts Arnold Monto and Emily Toth Martin discuss the details of the pandemic and our efforts to bring about its end using vaccines and other measures. How do we know the vaccines are safe and effective? How concerning are the variants? And what about kids? Read more

A nurse writes on a vial of blood taken from a man who was included in the Tuskegee syphilis study in Alabama, circa 1950.

Understanding Black Distrust of Medicine

Joel D. Howell

Using the bodies of African Americans without consent is a dark part of US medical history and part of a much larger issue in this country. Even if these widely documented—and incredibly gruesome—experimentations had never happened, the underlying racism that led us to permit such atrocities must still be addressed. Read more

Global map connected by dots and lines, a metaphor for collaboration

It's Time to Rethink Capacity Building in Global Health Work

K. Rivet Amico

Capacity building is a ubiquitous phrase in grant applications, communications, and guidelines for many global health initiatives. Too often the phrase connotes an assumption that “established” US partners build knowledge or practice in “less-resourced” communities. What language can we use to more honestly recognize the value and contributions of all collaborators? Read more