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Steve Scher

21 Podcast Episodes

Latest 1 May 2021 | Updated Daily

Weekly hand curated podcast episodes for learning

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93. David Williams with Steve Scher: A Human and Natural History of Puget Sound

In The Moment podcast

Not far from Seattle skyscrapers live 150-year-old clams, more than 250 species of fish, and underwater kelp forests as complex as any terrestrial ecosystem. For millennia, vibrant Coast Salish communities have lived beside these waters dense with nutrient-rich foods, with cultures intertwined through exchanges across the waterways. Transformed by settlement and resource extraction, Puget Sound and its future health now depend on a better understanding of the region’s ecological complexities. In this week’s episode, Senior Correspondent Steve Scher talks with naturalist and educator David B. Williams about his book Homewaters: A Human and Natural History of Puget Sound. Williams uncovers human and natural histories in, on, and around the Sound, sharing from conversations he conducted with archeologists, biologists, and tribal authorities. He traces how generations of humans have interacted with species like geoducks, salmon, orcas, rockfish, and herring. He also presents an unflinching look at how the Sound’s ecosystems have suffered from human behavior, including pollution, habitat destruction, and the effects of climate change. With wit, grace, and a depth of information, Williams introduces newcomers to the astonishing life that inhabits the Sound and offers lifetime residents new insight into and appreciation of the waters they call home. With the 51st annual Earth Day in sight, join Williams and Scher as they offer a poignant reminder that, as life returns to “normal,” business cannot go back to normal when it comes to restoring our planet. David B. Williams is a naturalist, author, and educator. His many books include the award-winning Too High and Too Steep: Reshaping Seattle’s Topography and Seattle Walks: Discovering History and Nature in the City. Steve Scher is a podcaster, interviewer, and teacher. He worked in Seattle public radio for almost 30 years. He has taught at the University of Washington since 2009. He is Senior Correspondent for Town Hall Seattle’s In The Moment podcast. Buy the Book: https://uwapress.uw.edu/book/9780295748603/homewaters/ Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here. 

53mins

19 Apr 2021

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91. Davarian L. Baldwin with Steve Scher: How Universities Are Plundering Our Cities

In The Moment podcast

In cities large and small across America, universities have become the dominant companies—and our cities their company towns. But Davarian L. Baldwin argues there is a cost to those who live in their shadow. In this week’s episode, Baldwin talks with Senior Correspondent Steve Scher about the ever-expanding campuses in America. Drawing upon his book In the Shadow of the Ivory Tower: How Universities Are Plundering Our Cities, Baldwin explores his journey of conversations with city leaders, low-wage workers tending to students’ needs, and local activists about seemingly unchecked power. They discuss Baldwin’s investigation of how urban universities play an outsized role in American cities: gentrifying neighborhoods and exacerbating housing inequality, maintaining large private police forces that target predominantly Black and Latinx neighborhoods nearby, and becoming primary employers, dictating labor practices and suppressing wages. Don’t miss this wake-up call to the reality that higher education is no longer the ubiquitous public good, and an invitation to an alternative vision for campus and urban life–and stay in the know about what’s happening in this moment at Town Hall Seattle. Davarian L. Baldwin is a leading urbanist, historian, and cultural critic. The Paul E. Raether Distinguished Professor of American Studies and founding director of the Smart Cities Lab at Trinity College, Baldwin is the author of Chicago’s New Negroes: Modernity, the Great Migration, and Black Urban Life and co-editor with Minkah Makalani of the essay collection Escape from New York! The New Negro Renaissance Beyond Harlem. Steve Scher is a podcaster, interviewer, and teacher. He worked in Seattle public radio for almost 30 years. He has taught at the University of Washington since 2009. He is Senior Correspondent for Town Hall Seattle’s In The Moment podcast. Buy the Book: https://www.harvard.com/book/in_the_shadow_of_the_ivory_tower/ Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here. 

56mins

5 Apr 2021

Similar People

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90. Maria Reva with Steve Scher: Good Citizens Need Not Fear

In The Moment podcast

In this week’s episode, writer Maria Reva joins Senior Correspondent Steve Scher to discuss her bitingly funny, satirical collection of stories, Good Citizens Need Not Fear, which unites around a single crumbling apartment building in Ukraine where a bureaucratic glitch omits the entire building and its residents from municipal records. Together, they investigate how the stories, which span the chaotic years leading up to and immediately following the fall of the Soviet Union, explore what it is to be an individual amid the roiling forces of history. Mark your calendars for this one—and stay in the know about what’s happening in this moment at Town Hall Seattle. Maria Reva was born in Ukraine and grew up in Vancouver, British Columbia. Her work has appeared in Best American Short Stories, McSweeney’s, and Granta. She currently lives in Vancouver and also works as an opera librettist. Steve Scher is a podcaster, interviewer, and teacher. He worked in Seattle public radio for almost 30 years. He has taught at the University of Washington since 2009. He is Senior Correspondent for Town Hall Seattle’s In The Moment podcast. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9781984897589 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here. 

51mins

22 Mar 2021

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127. Dr. Shanna Swan with Stacey Colino and Steve Scher: How Our Modern World Threatens the Future of Fertility

Town Hall Seattle Science Series

In 2017, a scientist and her team of researchers completed a major study. They found that over the past four decades, sperm levels among men in Western countries have dropped by more than 50 percent. The result sent shockwaves around the globe—but the story didn’t end there. It turns out our sexual development is changing in broader ways, for both men and women and even other species, and that the modern world is on pace to become an infertile one. How and why could this happen? What is hijacking our fertility and our health? The scientist who led that research team, Dr. Shanna Swan, joined us with her coauthor Stacey Colino in a conversation facilitated by Town Hall Senior Correspondent Steve Scher to unpack these startling discoveries. As contained in her book Count Down: How Our Modern World Is Threatening Sperm Counts, Altering Male and Female Reproductive Development, and Imperiling the Future of the Human Race, Dr. Swan and her team examined 185 studies involving close to 45,000 healthy men. She and Colino shared what they discerned about how both lifestyle and chemical exposures are affecting our fertility, sexual development, and general health as a species. With accessible explanations of the threats and repercussions, they presents an urgent wake-up call to action in protecting our future. Shanna H. Swan, PhD, is an award-winning scientist based at Mt. Sinai and one of the leading environmental and reproductive epidemiologists in the world. Dr. Swan has published more than 200 scientific papers and has been featured in extensive media coverage around the world. Her appearances include ABC News, NBC Nightly News, 60 Minutes, CBS News, PBS, BBC, and NPR, as well as in leading magazines and newspapers, including Newsweek, The Washington Post, Time, and many more. Stacey Colino is an award-winning writer specializing in health and environmental issues and a regular contributor to US News & World Report. Her work has appeared in The Washington Post Health section and in dozens of national magazines, including Newsweek, Parade, Woman’s Day, Sports Illustrated, and Good Housekeeping. She is the coauthor with David Katz of Disease-Proof: The Remarkable Truth About What Makes Us Well; Strong is the New Skinny with Jennifer Cohen; Good Food Fast! with Jason Roberts; and Taking Back the Month with Diana Taylor. Steve Scher is a podcaster, interviewer, and teacher. He worked in Seattle public radio for almost 30 years. He has taught at the University of Washington since 2009. He is Senior Correspondent for Town Hall Seattle’s In The Moment podcast. Buy the Book:  Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here. 

1hr 4mins

17 Mar 2021

Most Popular

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125. Noreena Hertz with Steve Scher: Restoring Human Connection in a World That’s Pulling Apart

Town Hall Seattle Science Series

Even before a global pandemic introduced us to terms like “social distancing,” loneliness was a defining condition of the twenty-first century, academic Noreena Hertz posits. She argues that the fabric of community was unraveling, and our personal relationships were under threat. Combining a decade of research with firsthand reporting, Hertz joined us to discuss her findings, collected in her book The Lonely Century: How to Restore Human Connection in a World that’s Pulling Apart. She shares how technology is not the sole culprit, but equally to blame are the dismantling of civic institutions, the reorganization of the workplace, the mass migration to cities, and decades of policies that have placed self-interest above the collective good. This loneliness is not merely a mental and physical health crisis, Hertz contends, but an economic and political one as well. But she believes it’s a crisis we have the power to solve, and she offers bold solutions for healing our fractured communities and restoring connection in our lives. Noreena Hertz is a renowned thought leader, academic, and broadcaster. She is the author of The Silent Takeover, The Debt Threat, and Eyes Wide Open. Her opinion pieces have appeared in The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, The Guardian, and Financial Times. She is currently based at University College London, where she holds an honorary professorship. Steve Scher is a podcaster, interviewer, and teacher. He worked in Seattle public radio for almost 30 years. He has taught at the University of Washington since 2009. He is Senior Correspondent for Town Hall Seattle’s In The Moment podcast. Buy the Book: https://www.elliottbaybook.com/book/9780593135839 Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation online click here. 

1hr 4mins

4 Mar 2021

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87. Séverine Autesserre with Steve Scher: The Frontlines of Peace

In The Moment podcast

What strategies have worked to build lasting peace in conflict zones, particularly for ordinary citizens on the ground? Researcher and peacebuilder Séverine Autesserre joins Senior Correspondent Steve Scher to share stories of ordinary yet extraordinary individuals and organizations who are confronting violence in their communities effectively. She examines the well-intentioned but inherently flawed peace industry, and argues against the commonly held belief that building peace requires billions in aid or massive international interventions. Real, lasting peace, she explains, requires giving power to local citizens. With success stories from her book The Frontlines of Peace: An Insider’s Guide to Changing the World, you won’t want to miss this riveting conversation. Catch this enlightening episode—and stay in the know about what’s happening in this moment at Town Hall Seattle. Séverine Autesserre is an award-winning author, peacebuilder, and researcher, as well as a Professor of Political Science at Barnard College, Columbia University. She is the author of The Trouble with the Congo and Peaceland, in addition to articles for publications such as The New York Times, The Washington Post, Foreign Affairs, and Foreign Policy. Twitter @SeverineAR  Steve Scher is a podcaster, interviewer, and teacher. He worked in Seattle public radio for almost 30 years. He has taught at the University of Washington since 2009. He is Senior Correspondent for Town Hall Seattle’s In The Moment podcast.  Buy the Book: The Frontlines of Peace: An Insider's Guide to Changing the World Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation online click here. 

1hr

1 Mar 2021

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83. Robert Chaney with Steve Scher: The Grizzly in the Driveway

In The Moment podcast

Four decades ago, the areas around Yellowstone and Glacier National Parks sheltered the last few hundred surviving grizzlies in the Lower 48 states. Their population has surged to more than 1,500 under the protection of the Endangered Species Act, and this burgeoning number of grizzlies now collides with the increasingly populated landscape. In this week’s episode, Senior Correspondent Steve Scher is joined by Montana journalist Rob Chaney as he chronicles the resurgence of this charismatic species against the backdrop of America’s long history with the grizzly. Chaney explores how humans and bears have long shared space, but how that relationship has changed in light of cars whizzing through bear habitats, tourists checking Facebook for photo ops, and hunters seeking trophy prey. Join them for this conversation that captures the clash between groups with radically different visions—and stay in the know about what’s happening in this moment at Town Hall. Rob Chaney is a report for the Missoulian. A lifelong Montanan, he covers science and the environment. Steve Scher is a podcaster, interviewer, and teacher. He worked in Seattle public radio for almost 30 years. He has taught at the University of Washington since 2009. He is Senior Correspondent for Town Hall Seattle’s In The Moment podcast. Buy the Book: https://uwapress.uw.edu/book/9780295747934/the-grizzly-in-the-driveway/ Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To become a member or make a donation click here. 

41mins

25 Jan 2021

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81. Judy Samuelson with Steve Scher: The Six New Rules of Business

In The Moment podcast

The rules of business are changing dramatically, says the Aspen Institute’s Judy Samuelson, and that means profound shifts in attitudes and mindsets that are redefining our notions of what constitutes business success. In this week’s episode with Senior Correspondent Steve Scher, she shares takeaways contained in her book The Six New Rules of Business: Creating Real Value in a Changing World. Based on her unique knowledge and insight, Samuelson lays out how hard-to-measure intangibles like reputation, trust, and loyalty are imposing new ways to assess risk and opportunity in investment and asset management. In our globalized era, she demonstrates how expectations of corporations are set far beyond the company gates–and why employees are both the best allies of the business and the new accountability mechanism, more so than consumers or investors. Don’t miss this powerful guide on how businesses are changing and what is needed to succeed in tomorrow’s economy—and stay in the know about what’s happening in this moment at Town Hall Seattle. Judy Samuelson is founder and executive director of the Aspen Institute Business and Society Program and a vice president at the Aspen Institute. She previously worked in legislative affairs in California and banking in New York’s garment center and ran the Ford Foundation’s office of Program-Related Investments. Samuelson writes regularly for Quartz@Work, is a Bellagio Fellow, and a director of Financial Health Network. Steve Scher is a podcaster, interviewer, and teacher. He worked in Seattle public radio fro almost 30 years. He has taught at the University of Washington since 2009. He is Senior Correspondent for Town Hall Seattle’s In The Moment podcast. Buy the Book: The Six New Rules of Business: Creating Real Value in a Changing World Presented by Town Hall Seattle. To make a donation or become a member click here. 

48mins

11 Jan 2021

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64. Tom Gauld with Steve Scher: Department of Mind-Blowing Theories

In The Moment podcast

In this week’s interview, Chief Correspondent Steve Scher talks with cartoonist Tom Gauld as he engages everyone with a rudimentary recall of their old science classes as well as those who consider themselves buffs of the contemporary physical and natural world. Breaking his pattern of lampooning writers, poets, and literary classics, Gauld skewers hapless scientists, nanobots, and puzzling theorems. Take an uproarious look at the world of science and tech through Gauld’s comics—and get an insider’s look and stay in the know about what’s going on in this moment at Town Hall Seattle. Tom Gauld is a cartoonist and illustrator. He has weekly comic strips in The Guardian and New Scientist and his comics have been published in The New York Times and The Believer, and on the cover of The New Yorker. His graphic novels include Baking with Kafka, Goliath, Mooncop, and You’re All Just Jealous of My Jetpack. Steve Scher is a podcaster, broadcaster, writer, interviewer, and teacher. He is the former host of KUOW-FM’s Weekday and has taught interviewing at the University of Washington since 2009. Scher is also the host of the podcast series At Length with Steve Scher. Presented by Town Hall Seattle. Buy the Book: Department of Mind-Blowing Theories

39mins

18 May 2020

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60. Kevin Hand with Steve Scher: The Search for Life in Alien Oceans

In The Moment podcast

In this week’s interview, In the Moment Chief Correspondent Steve Scher talks with Kevin Hand—one of today’s leading NASA scientists—about the modern scientific quest to delve beneath the surface of the ice-covered moons of Jupiter and Saturn and search for life in vast oceans that may be as old as the Earth itself. Hand reveals the latest in planetary science, biology, and the adventures of scientists like himself to explain how we know that oceans exist on moons like Europa, Titan, and Enceladus. He shows how the exploration of Earth’s oceans is informing our understanding of the potential habitability of these icy moons, and draws lessons from what we have learned about the origins of life on our own planet to consider how life could arise on these distant worlds. Get an insider’s look and stay in the know about what’s going on in this moment at Town Hall Seattle. Kevin Hand is a scientist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, where he has served as deputy chief scientist for solar system exploration and is leading an effort to land a spacecraft on the surface of Europa. He has helped lead expeditions to the glaciers of Kilimanjaro, the Dry Valleys of Antarctica, and the sea ice of the North Pole. Steve Scher is a podcaster, broadcaster, writer, interviewer, and teacher. He is the former host of KUOW-FM’s “Weekday” and has taught interviewing at the University of Washington since 2009. Presented by Town Hall Seattle. Please make a donation online by clicking here, by texting TOWN HALL to 44321, or by joining Town Hall as a member.

49mins

20 Apr 2020

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