If you enjoy researching and discussing current affairs then you should join the DMA Current Affairs Discussion Group.

The Current Affairs group meets on the third Thursday of each month (Sep-Jun) at 8:15AM in the Lillian Gade Room on the second floor of the DCA.

The structure is as follows: With input from the group, the Current Affairs Coordinator will maintain a list of potential discussion topics. At the end of each meeting, a topic and discussion leader is chosen for the next meeting. The discussion leader will (i) define and articulate the topic; (ii) assemble and have posted on the website background materials; (iii) lead the discussion. All members are encouraged to share information they find informative and relevant. The topic will be posted on this website.

We are not debating so the focus is on being better informed. The discussion leader will maintain this focus and allow everyone the opportunity to summarize what they have learned from the articles and what struck them as meaningful.

We hope to see you there.

Charlie Goodyear

Ideas for future discussion topics:

Block Chain.  Enthusiasts promote blockchains as breakthrough technology for secure and distributed applications in healthcare, finance and the food chain.  Data can be changed but a record is kept of exactly who did it and when.    We’ll discuss exactly what blockchain is and if it can deliver the advantages over traditional database technology.

Microbiome – the trillions of bacteria in your gut and organs.  New research indicates the microbiome is critical to your health.  But it is extremely complex how it works.  The microbiomes’ ecosystem can be disrupted by use of antibiotics and disease.  Conversely, it can be “seeded” with new bacteria.  Understanding the microbiome could be as significant as genetic medicine. 

Artificial Intelligence.  Companies and governments are investing enormous sums into AI research.  It is one of the most sought after specialties for new graduates.  There are positive promises for AI – self driving cars, better search, medicine, cyber security, smart cities, …  But there are also threats – citizen surveillance, job destruction, …  

Ten Years After the Global Financial Crisis, is the System Safer?  More than 10 years ago, Lehman Brothers collapsed, and the world witnessed one of the worst financial crises in global history. In the United States, the stock market plummeted, unemployment soared, and the economy was thrown into a recession. And many other countries faced a similar fate. Has the world learned its lesson? 

CRISPR – gene editing.  It’s like nuclear energy – very powerful but very dangerous.  How should it be regulated?  If you could “fix” an ovum of some awful disease, for the person and their descendants, should you?  A scientist in China just did so.  How about making a super race?