UCL in the media
In an opinion piece, Dr Robert Smith (UCL Psychology & Language Sciences) discusses how social media polarises people’s political opinions, and argues that ‘echo chambers’ are an inevitable consequence of social networks which utilise algorithms to curate our online news.
Dr Brian Klaas (UCL School of European Languages, Cultures & Society) writes in an opinion that America has a gun deaths epidemic. “Every other rich country on the planet has figured out how to reduce gun violence. It’s time we learned from them”, comments Dr Klaas.
A programme developed at UCL can sort x-rayed images of artworks and reveal painted-over masterpieces. “Probably around one third of Van Gogh’s paintings contain concealed images waiting to be discovered,” explains Dr Miguel Rodrigues (UCL Electronic and Electrical Engineering).
Commenting on a study that concludes there is no "gay gene", Professor David Curtis (UCL Genetics, Evolution & Environment) says that large numbers of genetic variants have very modest associations with sexual orientation, but that no single variant has a substantial effect.
Average cigarette consumption fell by nearly a quarter between 2011 and 2018, a figure attributed not only to fewer people smoking but also to a reduction in consumption amongst those who do still smoke, finds a study led by Dr Sarah Jackson (UCL Epidemiology & Health Care).
Dr Aida Gomez-Robles (UCL Anthropology) explains that the discovery of a nearly complete 3.8 million-year-old skull reveals the face of an early human ancestor we know very little about.
A leaked government document suggests No 10 and the Treasury believe there are too many teaching assistants (TAs) and that they are not deployed effectively. Professor Rob Webster (UCL Institute of Education) says TAs are the "mortar in the brickwork" holding schools together.
Professor Ronan McCrea (UCL Laws) outlines in an opinion piece the various possible outcomes of the prorogation of Parliament by the Johnson government, including if the prime minister lost the support of the suspended Commons.