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Further Research Needed

Further Research Needed

By Further Research Needed
A podcast on science from scientists. Here we ask those seemingly straight forward questions that don’t have such straight forward answers. Each episode takes a tongue in cheek look at current research and research practises whilst lifting the veil on what is scientific truth. Mostly we nerd out about the crazy complexity of the world, with the occasional calling out of mischief in the research community. We try to give a full account of the topics under discussion but as always, further research is needed.
Contact: Twitter @frnpodcast or
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Is science education fit for purpose?
What is the purpose of science education at different stages of school... and are we doing a good job delivering? 
October 21, 2020
What would turn us into supervillains?
Let's leave the realm of the scientifically possible behind for a bit, and plan ahead for when our time comes. 
October 7, 2020
Does the maverick scientist narrative bypass the scientific process?
Does the myth of the maverick scientist help or hinder science? In this episode we take an in depth look at what makes a maverick scientist and the effect the trope has on scientists and the public perception of research.
September 23, 2020
Who takes the guesstimation crown?
We're putting our scientific minds to practical work and try to make an educated guess on a completely unknown number. Can you beat us?
September 9, 2020
Can a biologist fix a radio?
We are doing a journal club episode on the paper: Can a biologist fix a radio? (Labeznik, CANCER CELL, 2002). 
August 26, 2020
Is pivoting research towards the crisis good for science?
The podcast with straight forward questions that lead to not so straight forward answers is back for another season. 
August 12, 2020
Further Research Needed Trailer
The podcast with straight forward questions that lead to not so straight forward answers introduces itself.
August 9, 2020
Science to make you happy
Enough with the rants for now. Today, each of us is bringing an uplifting piece of science to the table, and shares his excitement with the others. In the end, we have an important announcement about the future of this podcast.
April 25, 2020
A djinn for science
WHY IS SCIENCE SO SLOW? Today we are looking at science as a whole - talking about the things that drive us up the wall and things that are truly fascinating about the scientific research system. As always, we end on a positive note: Each of us makes a wish to the science djinn to improve the scientific system in the long run. All that is needed now is for us to go out there and make them come true...
March 20, 2020
Scientist and sci-fi: a fickle love affair
How do we as scientists feel about science fiction? Do we get mad about incorrect depictions of science in scifi? Does it create unrealistic expectations towards scientific progress and potential? And who inspires whom anyway? We're diving deep today, and leaving the world of real science behind ... almost.
February 23, 2020
A guide to causality
How do we know Nicolas Cage is (probably) not drowning people? Does eating ice cream make people drown themselves maybe? In this episode, we learn how to assess if there can be a causal link between two correlated phenomena. We find spurious correlations everywhere and having a toolbox to probe for causality is a must for every sceptic. 
February 10, 2020
Stop saying biomolecule!
How is a biomolecule different from any other molecule? Are there artificial chemicals and natural chemicals? Should scientists be trying to make their work sound more "natural", "organic" or "biological"? In this episode we talk about this self-identification and how it may be harming science as a whole.
January 23, 2020
What has Matthew McConaughey ever done for us? A recap of the last 10 years in science
We end the decade of research with highlighting the supposedly biggest discoveries in science. Alongside those, we brought some other topics that we found interesting and worth chatting about. Stay excited for the best and worst enzyme on the planet, new directions for antidepressants, some practical tips for time travellers and car-driving rats.  Full list of time stamps and topics: 0:00 - Intro 3:16 - RuBisCO:  the best and worst enzyme on the planet 13:15 - The 5 greatest discoveries of the last decade 51:25 - Quantum computing - yes or no? 57:40 - Genome-wide association replacing candidate gene studies 1:01:23 - Street drugs as antidepressants 1:14:46 - Science for time travellers 1:24:28 - Car-driving rats / Outro 1:26:56 - Additional: Bathroom break chat
January 11, 2020
Should the publishers perish?
Even though most scientists agree, there are significant flaws in the publishing system (and related to that: funding distribution, reproducibility and peer review) change is slow. This might be, because our careers depend on publishing in reputable journals, being a scientist basically requires it.  In this episode, Chris, Ashley and I discuss issues coming from our current publishing system and propose alternatives for some specific aspects. If you share any of the ideas, then talk to your colleagues about it and share them online. On the Fey-Sci blog, you can find links to programs which can make a difference if we give them a change. After all, change has to come from within, and we, the scientists hold the power to change the system together.
December 8, 2019
The linearity of life
Let's dive deep into biochemistry! Chris and I discuss our beloved biological marcromolecules, and how they are all synthesised in a linear fashion, as a chain of monomers. I was wondering why this is, since especially proteins function through their 3D structure and the linear nature of the chain can be a drawback. For example, many diseases are related to misfolding of proteins, like Alzheimer's disease.  We explore some ideas on pathway evolution and kinetic reaction control. In the end, Chris convinces me with an argument on information processing. As always: informal, unscripted, and highly subjective.  Read more on
December 1, 2019
Is science a religion?
What a ridiculous and utterly obsolete question. It is the exact opposite! That's what you would hear from most people. At closer look however, the habits in the scientific community resemble those in religious circles more than they would like. Ashley, Chris and I take on that question and discuss in which aspects the scientific institution exhibits hallmarks of a religion. Including: the sanctification by Nobel prize, Chris' blind belief in the electron, poop pills as lifestyle advice and many more topics that we touch on.
November 21, 2019
Chemical separation: Costing the earth
Why chemical separations are so difficult. Separating useful chemicals from our waste has become one of the world's biggest challenges. We discuss the scientific background of separation issues, and what it means for research and our day to day lives.
November 11, 2019
RNA and the world
Chris Wood and I chat about some features of RNA that are generally not so prominent in biochemistry textbooks, but I find them really fascinating. Along these thoughts, we trash some ribozymes, take a stand on RNA's role in the origin of life and discuss a few issues and developments of the recently emerging RNA-based drugs.
November 10, 2019