Extra Credit: Our pick of stories from around the web that bridge the gap between news and scholarship. Brought to you each Tuesday from the editors of JSTOR Daily.
Why 2016 was great (The Washington Post)
by Annie Duflo and Jeffrey Mosenkis
2016 was the worst, right? Not according to researchers who study global poverty. Across the world, extreme poverty, child mortality, and illiteracy are down. New studies are finding more ways to improve lives in the developing world.
Why old people should be like Marines (The New York Times)
by Lisa Feldman Barrett
Why do some people reach old age with no loss of cognitive ability? Researchers who have studied changes to the brain among “superagers” find that one key may be pushing mental and physical activity to the point of discomfort.
Groundbreaking technology can grow new ears (Smithsonian Magazine)
by Maxine Wally
Using a technique involving 3D-printed polymers and stem cells extracted from a patient’s own tissue, researchers have found a way to grow new ears for children with a congenital deformity. The process could eventually help people with many other ailments too.
The living legacy of eugenics (Pacific Standard)
by Kate Wheeling
California institutions sterilized nearly 20,000 people under a state eugenics law in the twentieth century, mostly in the 1940s. Studying medical records, researchers found that most of the victims were under 18 at the time. Now, they’re calling for reparations for those who are still alive today.
The dangers of pop science (Times Higher Education)
by Jack Grove
If you’re reading this, you probably agree that popular science articles can be interesting and educational. Just don’t get too cocky. A new study finds that reading a simple take on a complex subject can convince readers they’re more informed than they really are.
Have you seen a story online that does a good job of bridging the gap between the news and scholarship? Or something that seems particularly well-researched? Let us know and we may include it in next week’s roundup. Email us at jstordaily_submissions (at) jstor (dot) org.