people in cars line up for COVID vaccine

Op-Ed: Why public health messaging should emphasize vaccine acceptance, not hesitancy
Los Angeles Times | February 23, 2021

Research from IDSS affiliates Sinan Aral and Dean Eckles highlights how overstating or overemphasizing hesitancy can, by itself, keep others from getting vaccinated.

Dr. Fatima Cody Stanford

Study: Covid-19 communications featuring racially diverse physicians can improve health outcomes for communities of color
MIT News | February 22, 2021

Public health video messages featuring a racially diverse set of physicians were found to decrease knowledge gaps about Covid-19, says study from physicians, economists and MIT professors, including Dr. Fatima Cody Stanford (pictured) and IDSS affiliate Esther Duflo.

an office with people in COVID masks

Mass General-MIT Team Create an Online COVID-19 Testing Calculator for Schools and Businesses
Mass General Research Institute | February 22, 2021

A team from Massachusetts General Hospital and MIT, including IDSS affiliate Anette “Peko” Hosoi, has created an online tool to help organizations calculate the costs and benefits of different COVID-19 testing and mitigation strategies.

Front Cover of MIT Press book Mercury Stories

‘Mercury Stories: Understanding Sustainability through a Volatile Element’
AAAS/MIT Press | February 22, 2021

In the new book "Mercury Stories," IDSS core faculty member Noelle Eckley Selin and Henrik Selin examine sustainability through analyzing human interactions with mercury over thousands of years.

MIT Assistant Professor David Des Marais and researchers

The catalyzing potential of J-WAFS seed grants
MIT News | February 22, 2021

Caroline Uhler, an IDSS core faculty member, is part of a research collaboration working on a J-WAFS-backed project to find the genetic foundations of plant tolerance to the stresses of heat and drought.

stock image of a stock market graph

Getting To The Bottom of GameStop
Bloomberg | February 19, 2021

Sinan Aral, IDSS Affiliate and Director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy, joins a podcast discussion on the GameStop hearing and whether social media like r/WallStreetBets manipulated financial markets.

a sheet of stickers for recipients of the COVID-19 vaccine

Why didn’t the Massachusetts vaccine website work better?
Boston Globe | February 18, 2021

One possibility is that the state system was cobbled together too quickly to permit adequate testing of software and servers, according to Stuart Madnick, IDSS affiliate and director of the cybersecurity center at MIT Sloan.

stock image - angry figures on laptop screen

Lonely, angry, eager to make history: Online mobs are likely to remain a dangerous reality
Washington Post | February 17, 2021

Sinan Aral, IDSS affiliate and author of “The Hype Machine,” said tech companies must rethink their business models, codes and rules if they hope to steer movements away from real-world harm.

electric car being charged

Gas or Electric? Thinking Algebraically About Car Costs, Emissions and Trade-offs
New York Times | February 16, 2021

In this lesson, utilizing the tool developed by the Trancik Lab, students apply the familiar formula y=mx+b to a relevant real-world scenario: buying a car.

stock image of a syringe

A machine-learning approach to finding treatment options for Covid-19
MIT News | February 16, 2021

Caroline Uhler (IDSS, EECS, Broad Institute) and fellow researchers develop a system to identify drugs that might be repurposed to fight the coronavirus in elderly patients.


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