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Applied Sciences take research out of the lab and into the real world. Some fields have applied branches and others make application their primary focus. Often using a combination of qualitative and quantitative methods, these fields tend to focus on developing and evaluating practical solutions through scientific inquiry.


education | business | political science | economics | urban planning

Using spectroscopy to identify the bugs that make (or spoil) wine

Saccharomyces cerevisiae, the ‘sugar mold,’ is used to convert sugar to alcohol in wine and beer fermentation. In the wine business, it is a common refrain that “the wine is made in the vineyard.” This is meant to suggest that good wine ultimately relies on good grapes. It’s not clear that this maxim is true, […]

Using Twitter data to visualize sentiment in NYC

Imagine having your finger on the pulse of an entire city, in real time. To see its heartbeat — changes in people opinions and moods — as a cascade of color, sweeping over the terrain. By creating an algorithm that figures out if a tweet is generally positive or negative, we were able to overlay […]

The Neuroscience of Why We Give: Positive Emotions Predict Donations

How do people make decisions regarding charitable giving? While there are people in need all around the globe, why is it that some people and organizations receive donations while others do not? Research by Brian Knutson, Paul Slovic, Daniel Vastfjall and I recently published in the Journal of Neuroscience found that including photographs of donation recipients […]

What does it all mean? Awe motivates resolution of uncertainty

Past research has suggested that one of the psychological variables associated with experiencing awe is a deep and uncomfortable feeling of uncertainty – an inability to wrap one’s mind around the information presented to us. Whether this be a result of contemplating the infinite depths of space, a beautiful piece of art, or a strikingdouble […]

The Moral Roots of Environmental Attitudes

If you are liberal, you probably believe we should be doing more – a lot more – to curb environmental degradation. When you see someone throw a plastic bottle into a garbage can instead of recycling bin, you probably pass judgment, maybe even feel a little sick inside. If you are conservative, chances are you […]