Titan discovery gets us closer to methane-based alien life

  Titan discovery gets us closer to methane-based alien life   A new paper published today on “Science Advances” provides the first indisputable evidence of the presence of a molecule – acrylonitrile –  on Titan which Cornell University researchers theorized could be key to life on the methane-based, oxygen-free moon of Saturn. Chemical and biological […]

Of birds and babies: Social cues are key to vocal learning

ITHACA, N.Y. –  When a baby bird learns a song, is it simply mimicking and practicing its father’s tune? Or do chicks learn by first putting out nonsensical sounds – akin to a human infant’s babble – which they then build upon based on their parent’s response? A Cornell University study suggests that social feedback […]

“Root Map” transcends Mohawk, US, Canada borders to connect cultures

ITHACA, N.Y. –  A new play about borders has found an unusual way to transcend them: by integrating local experiences in each new place it is performed. When it travels Aug. 26 to Akwesasne, the Mohawk Nation territory divided by the U.S. – Canada border, the script will incorporate stories of local Mohawk people, some […]

WannaCry attack reveals vulnerability and resilience

Rebecca Slayton, assistant professor at Cornell University’s Science & Technology Studies Department and an expert on international security and cooperation, comments on the WannaCry cyber-attacks that have spread across 150 countries since Friday. Slayton says the attack shows both the vulnerabilities and resilience of our computer systems.  Bio: http://sts.cornell.edu/rebecca-slayton  Slayton says: “The largest ransomware attack in […]

Le Pen lost, but opposition to French establishment lives on

Mabel Berezin is professor of sociology at Cornell University and author of “Illiberal Politics in Neoliberal Times: Cultures, Security, and Populism in a New Europe” and “Europe Without Borders.” Berezin says Marine Le Pen – who lost the race for the French presidency yesterday – has established the Front National as France’s opposition party, pitting […]

To govern, Macron will need more than a victory on Sunday

On Sunday, French voters will decide who will be their next president in the second – and final – round of a critical election. The two candidates – both fringe in French politics – are pro-business, centrist Emmanuel Macron and anti-immigrant, far-right Marine Le Pen. Cornell University experts comment on this race and how the […]

French election: First round out of the way, second round will be a yawner

Emmanuel Macron and Marine Le Pen, two non-traditional candidates who campaigned on opposite electoral platforms, advanced to the second and final round of the French presidential race. Cornell experts offer their views on the election so far, and what we should expect come May 7. Christopher Way, professor of government and director of the Cornell […]

April surprise: Is Le Pen really Hillary?

Mabel Berezin is professor of sociology at Cornell University and author of “Illiberal Politics in Neoliberal Times: Culture, Security and Populism in the New Europe” and “Europe Without Borders.” Berezin says comparisons between French populist candidate Marine Le Pen and Donald Trump – already fraught ­– may end this weekend, when Le Pen faces the […]

Capitol Hill’s alumni networks attract influence, PAC money

ITHACA, N.Y. – The old adage, “it’s not what you know, it’s who you know” has long fueled the parental drive for children to attend Ivy League schools. But it turns out where you went to school is less important than who else went to the same school – at least, if you’re in Congress. […]

Dutch election not bellwether for populist rise in Europe

Preliminary exit poll results in the Netherlands suggest that Geert Wilders’ anti-Islam Party for Freedom performed below expectations gaining only 19 of the 150 seats in the Dutch parliament. Mabel Berezin, professor of sociology at Cornell University and author of “Illiberal Politics in Neoliberal Times: Cultures, Security, and Populism in a New Europe” and “Europe […]