New America Foundation, ASU announce partnership

April 8, 2010

The New America Foundation and Arizona State University today announced Future Tense, a strategic partnership to explore emerging technologies and their transformative effects on society and public policy. Slate magazine, which has collaborated with New America to produce several events on these issues, will be the media partner for Future Tense.

Central to the partnership is a series of events in Washington, D.C., that will take in-depth, provocative looks at issues that, while little-understood today, will dramatically reshape the policy debates of the coming decade. All three partners will complement these discussions with original research, and explore new ways to continue the conversations online. Download Full Image

"The New America Foundation has always tried to look beyond today's political debates," New America President Steve Coll said. "Arizona State University has experts who are literally inventing the future. Those innovations will be shaping public policy three years, five years from now in ways that we need to be thinking about today -- so we're thrilled to be working with them to spark those conversations."

The Future Tense partnership complements ASU's transformation into a New American University (">">http://newamericanuniversity.asu....) working collaboratively to find innovative solutions to global challenges, said President Michael M. Crow.

"Arizona State University shares the mission of the New America Foundation to raise the policy discourse on emerging technologies and their transformative effects on society," Crow said. "This unique venture, involving provocative thinkers from many disciplines at ASU, will take a rigorous, creative approach to our greatest challenges in the Future Tense."

The partnership will formally debut on Monday, May 24, with a conference exploring the implications -- both tactical and ethical -- of technologically- and biologically-enhanced warfare. Subsequent events will tackle bioengineering and climate change, the political impact of radical life extension, and the question of whether we're even capable of governing such accelerating change.

The collaboration is a core component of the new model for 21st century legal education that is evolving at ASU's Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law, a reinvention of the modern law school as a place to address major global challenges in innovative, pragmatic and multidisciplinary ways.

"There is no global challenge facing us that does not have law or policy as part of its solution, and our collaboration with the New America Foundation makes it clear that we are the place for forward-looking analysis concerning the legal, ethical, and policy implications of scientific or technological innovation," said Paul">">Paul Schiff Berman, Dean of the Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law.

The College of Law's Center for Law, Science & Innovation and MacNeil/Lehrer Productions has begun development on a documentary, also called "Future Tense," that will investigate, through a public television series, online events and public outreach, the potential benefits of emerging technologies, the ethical, social and legal dilemmas posed by them and possible strategies and solutions.

About Arizona State University

Arizona State University is creating a new model for American higher education, an unprecedented combination of academic excellence, entrepreneurial energy and broad access. This New American University is a single, unified institution comprising four differentiated campuses positively impacting the economic, social, cultural and environmental health of the communities it serves. Its research is inspired by real-world application blurring the boundaries that traditionally separate academic disciplines. The Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law at ASU, building Legal Education in the Future Tense, houses the Center for Law, Science & Innovation, the oldest, largest and by far the most comprehensive law and science center in the country. For more information on these projects, please visit:">">,">">, and

About">"> New America Foundation

The New America Foundation is a nonprofit, nonpartisan public policy institute that invests in new thinkers and new ideas to address the next generation of challenges facing the United States. For more information, please visit

About">"> Slate Magazine
Slate is a daily magazine on the Web, offering analysis and commentary about politics, news, and culture. Slate's strong editorial voice and witty take on current events have been recognized with numerous awards, including the National Magazine Award for General Excellence Online. The site, which is owned by The Washington Post Company, does not charge for access and is supported by advertising revenues. For more information, please visit"> />

Janie Magruder,"> style="color: #0000ff;">
(480) 727-9052
Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law

Technology that takes a village

April 8, 2010

Sumo robots, new iPhone apps, simulated airplane landings and a virtual tour of the human body are among the projects that will be on display at the spring Prime the Pipeline Showcase – projects created by East Valley high school juniors in collaboration with teachers, professors and college student mentors.

The Prime the Pipeline Project (P3), funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation, has been bringing high school students and teachers together with ASU faculty and undergraduate mentors since spring 2009 to develop students’ interest and knowledge in science, technology, engineering and math. Participants form “scientific villages,” or project groups, in which they collaborate, experiment, and complete one major project over the course of an eight-week session. Download Full Image

The grant is managed by the Center for Practice, Research and Innovation in Mathematics Education located on ASU’s Tempe Campus.

“During high school, students rarely have the opportunity to not only learn about careers in the various science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields, but to actually get a taste of the kind of work STEM professionals do,” says Carole Greenes, associate vice provost for STEM Education and principal investigator for the Pipeline project.

“The ‘Prime the Pipeline Project: Putting Knowledge to Work’ does just that. Students engage with scientists in the solution of workplace challenges, using the same types of technology and addressing the same types of issues,” Greenes says. “We believe that this experience will increase the number of students who enter college ready and eager to pursue STEM majors.”

Andy Cornejo, one of the Rockets and Robots villagers, designed and built model rockets and “Sumo Robots” with engineering professors Mark Henderson and Brad Rogers in the College of Technology and Innovation. Cornejo and his peers found the activity improved their problem-solving skills while giving them a chance to get a firsthand look at a variety of science careers.

“I want to go into medicine, but I might end up in engineering. Building robots is the most interesting thing we’ve done so far, and I am able to test the waters of different careers,” says Cornejo, a junior at Higley High who has been in the program since its inception.

For Emily Kolnitys, a Highland High student, finding the right solution to a problem taught a valuable lesson. “Problem-solving was the most difficult part of designing the robot,” she says. “There are so many places where the problem could be – the housing, the programming, the wires, or just a dead battery.”

Their final sumo robot designs will compete against robots built by other teams at the showcase.

Participants in the Aviation Village experience an overview in piloting, including an introduction to the scientific principles of flight, practice and history of flight instruments, aviation mathematics, and the forces involved in flight from ASU aviation lecturers Jim Anderson and Al Mittelstaedt.

“We’ve been in the simulators right from the beginning, learning to fly and navigate,” says Ayla Perez, a Highland High student. “Of course, a couple people crashed their first time. There’s so much to look at and so many instruments you need to watch.”

Two students will demonstrate landing an aircraft at the showcase, using professional flight simulators.

Students in the Trauma Simulation Village, led by Jon Howell and Eric Perez from the East Valley Institute of Technology, have researched the normal anatomy of the human body and functions of organs from the brain to the bladder, as well as a variety of disorders of each structure, and then created 2-D organ models using Adobe Flash, Photoshop and Illustrator to depict the human body.

“Learning how to use the computer programs was a challenge,” says student Ray Song, who plans to go into medicine, “but I was interested in the body parts and the anatomy.”

The “See C” Village, run by ASU engineering professor Tim Lindquist, covers the programming language used to develop software applications for Apple devices. Students in this village progressed through a number of team projects to develop and test new applications for the iPod and iPhone.

“We’re working on simple applications, but the syntax was challenging to learn,” says Williams Field High School junior Alex Iadiccico. “The programming we’ve done in the past was pretty basic, nothing like this.”

The showcase will be held at 4:15 p.m., April 13, in the Cooley Ballroom on ASU’s Polytechnic campus. It’s free to the public. For more information, contact Stephanie Weight at stephanie.weight">"> or (480) 727-0909.

Written by Kari Stallcop

Media contact:
Chris Lambrakis