Freshwater's macro microplastic problem
Fibers from our clothes are choking freshwater bodies with microplastic pollution. Solving the problem won’t be easy.
Americans are exposed to more pollutants indoors than outdoors. One solution: Create buildings that breathe cleanly.
Infant brains reveal how the mind gets built
An ambitious new study put infants into an MRI machine to reveal a neural organization similar to that of adults.
Where forests work harder
A new study shows that trees in the Boston region grow faster and store more carbon as biomass the closer they are to developed areas.
Living the dream of a net-zero house
The growing number of firms offering energy-efficient modular designs has made a high-performance residence accessible to more people.
Cities are not as big a deal as you think
By making "urban" synonymous with "city," we miss the realities of where we live and how our sprawling ways are changing the world.
The molecular me, tracing the history of the gene
A review of Siddhartha Mukherjee's new sprawling history of the science of genetics and its societal implications.
Defining parks for the social good
Olmsted's Yosemite Report reveals the social and political arguments behind both urban and rural parks.
Have we hit peak whiteness?
Our obsession with cleanliness is running afoul of scientific reality.
Could pavement get smarter?
Critter crossings, sensitive bridges, and other ways to re-imagine good old asphalt.
The making of MIT's Collier Memorial
J. Meejin Yoon, head of MIT's architecture department, commemorates fallen campus police officer Sean Collier with vaults of solid granite.
Why we should let the Pantheon crack
John Ochsendorf is trying to prove that historical buildings are more stable than we give them credit for.
Fixing the fix
Some surprising new weapons are in development to aid those battling addiction.
Drug development: A complicated path
Only one drug is available to treat sickle-cell disease, but a wave of investment and industry attention is set to turn the tide.
The city is an ecosystem, pipes and all
Ecologists are starting to understand cities as ecosystems, but managing them that way is another challenge.
The body electric
The bionic vision of Hugh Herr, from prosthetic limbs to movement enhanced with exoskeletons.
Was the human brain unleashed?
The human cortex is not just bigger than that of other mammals, it's wired differently. Why?
A speech synthesizer direct to the brain
Recordings from the brain’s surface are giving scientists unprecedented views into how the brain controls speech.
Will cities of the future be built of wood?
Skyscrapers made of wood? It's not the material we associate with dense cities, but there's a movement to revisit this age-old material in new urban buildings.
What am I thinking about you?
A Q&A with MIT neuroscientist Rebecca Saxe explores the uniquely social human brain.
A new map, a decade in the works, shows structures of the brain in far greater detail than ever before.
Climate change may mean more crime
What are the social costs of climate change? Provocative new studies suggest conflicts and crime may rise with temperatures.
Dirty water is not forever
The Charles River overcomes its polluted reputation with its first public swim in decades.
Latency: a sleeping giant
Most people infected with Mycobacterium tuberculosis never get disease, but predicting who will is turning out to be a complex problem.
Studying how life bloomed on Earth--and might emerge elsewhere.
Re-designing product design
MIT's Neri Oxman wants designers not just to dream up new products but to change the way they’re made.
Shared decision-making: on the same page
Increasingly, there’s a notion that medical decisions should be shared, but can doctors and patients learn to work together?
Greening health care
Health care leaders tackle longstanding environmental challenges.
The too-smart city?
We’re already building the metropolis of the future—green, wired, even helpful. Now critics are starting to ask whether we’ll really want to live there.
Universities, health organizations and government groups are amassing huge biobanks to help scientists probe the origins and development of human disease.
The science of cities: life in the concrete jungle
Urban ecology research is aiming to help cities make better decisions to improve the urban environment.
Do you really need a knee replacement?
Knee replacements are on the rise, but the decision to get one is not always straightforward.
Boston's lost island neighborhood
How a never-built floating wonderland could spark ambitions for the city’s future.
The true faces of emotion
Scientists debate the universality of facial expressions and the emotions they show.
The traumatized brain
Researchers are trying to understand how to treat traumatic brain injuries.
Scientists are beginning to study what lives in the environments where we spend most of our time.
The mystery behind anesthesia
Studying the brain under anesthesia could shed light on consciousness.
Regulations threaten the raw materials of perfumery; technology struggles to catch up.
A whiff of history
When smells vanish, we lose a whole dimension of the world. Now there’s a movement to change that.