Democracy in decline for one-third of the world

PUBLIC RELEASE: 20-JUN-2018   TAYLOR & FRANCIS GROUP 2.6 billion people – a third of the world’s population – live in countries where democracy is in retreat, according to a new study based on the largest dataset on democracy, published today in Democratization. The research also found that only 15 per cent of people globally…

Dogs understand what’s written all over your face

PUBLIC RELEASE: 20-JUN-2018 New research shows that dogs use different parts of their brains to process negative and positive emotions cued by human facial expressions SPRINGER Dogs are capable of understanding the emotions behind an expression on a human face. For example, if a dog turns its head to the left, it could be picking…

Liberals do drink more lattes, but maybe not for the reasons you think

Public Release: 19-Jun-2018 New research indicates that liberals drink more lattes because they are more open to globalization than conservatives are. University of Pennsylvania The term “latte liberal” has been a popular way to disparage American progressives as uppity and out of touch, but does a person’s coffee preference really say something about his or…

The burglary microbiome project

Public Release: 8-Jun-2018   American Society for Microbiology June 8, 2018 – Atlanta, GA – Researchers have demonstrated that microbial signatures, the unique microbial make-up of each individual, from the built environment can identify persons involved in crimes occurring in the home, such as burglaries. The research is presented at ASM Microbe, the annual meeting…

Dolphins deliberately killed for use as bait in global fisheries

Public Release: 7-Jun-2018   The harvest of aquatic mammals for bait is widespread globally, but most common in Latin America and Asia Frontiers Important new research released ahead of World Oceans Day exposes the widespread practice of killing aquatic mammals such as dolphins, sea lions, seals and otters for use as bait in global fisheries.…

Smarter brains run on sparsely connected neurons

Public Release: 17-May-2018 Ruhr-University Bochum The more intelligent a person, the fewer connections there are between the neurons in his cerebral cortex. This is the result of a study conducted by neuroscientists working with Dr Erhan Genç and Christoph Fraenz at Ruhr-Universität Bochum; the study was performed using a specific neuroimaging technique that provides insights…

Research pinpoints optimal age of puppy cuteness

Public Release: 15-May-2018 The popular meme proclaiming that all dogs are puppies assumes that humans’ adoration of canines is not conditional on their age. But a new study led by Clive Wynne, professor of psychology and director of Arizona State University’s Canine Science Collaboratory, suggests otherwise. In a paper published this month in Anthrozoos: A…

Think chimpanzee beds are dirtier than human ones? Think again

Public Release: 15-May-2018   North Carolina State University Chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) appear to keep tidier sleeping arrangements than humans do. That’s one finding of a recent study that evaluated the microbes and arthropods found in the treetop beds that chimpanzees make each night. “We know that human homes are effectively their own ecosystems, and human…

Why some people resist authority

Public Release: 14-May-2018   Neuroimaging research provides new insight into urge to rebel Society for Neuroscience Caption The urge to rebel against control over one’s decisions is associated with the connectivity between parietal and frontal brain regions (shown in color). The stronger the synchronous activation was in these regions, the more likely were the participants…

Is colonialism creating inappropriate regulation of traditional medicine practitioners?

PUBLIC RELEASE: 11-MAY-2018 MARY ANN LIEBERT, INC./GENETIC ENGINEERING NEWS CAPTION JACM (The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine) is a monthly peer-reviewed journal published online with open access options and in print that is dedicated to research on paradigm, practice, and policy advancing integrative health. CREDIT: MARY ANN LIEBERT, INC., PUBLISHERS New Rochelle, NY, May…

Hostile teachers can lose students 5 percent on test scores

PUBLIC RELEASE: 10-MAY-2018 TAYLOR & FRANCIS GROUP Teachers who antagonize their students by belittling them, showing favoritism, or criticizing their contributions can damage their learning potential, a new study warns. Investigating the influence of teacher ‘misbehavior’ on student learning, a team of communication experts set up a teaching experiment in which almost 500 undergraduate students…

Protecting campus free speech, even when it challenges beliefs

Public Release: 2-May-2018   Cornell University ITHACA, N.Y. – Colleges and universities are struggling with the question of who decides what is acceptable speech on campus. When does a controversial topic become hate speech? When should it be allowed as free speech? Two Cornell University researchers say psychological science’s extensive study of bias offers an…

Could robots be counselors? Early research shows positive user experience

Public Release: 3-May-2018   New research has shown for the first time that a social robot can deliver a ‘helpful’ and ‘enjoyable’ motivational interview University of Plymouth Caption Many participants in the University of Plymouth study praised the ‘non-judgmental’ nature of the humanoid NAO robot as it delivered its session — with one even saying…

The macabre world of mind-controlling parasites

Public Release: 1-May-2018 The gruesome new field of neuro-parasitology could provide insights into the neurological basis for behavior and decision-making Frontiers Imagine a parasite that makes an animal change its habits, guard the parasite’s offspring or even commit suicide. While mind-control may sound like something out of a science fiction movie, the phenomenon is very…