Lectures help bridge gap between scientists, policy makers and public

Pete HatemiPete Hatemi, associate professor of political science, microbiology and biochemistry at Pennsylvania State University, will give two upcoming talks at Linfield College.

The first talk, “The Neurobiology of Political Violence: New Tools to Understand and Deter Violent Actors,” will be held on Monday, Feb. 25, at 4:30 p.m. in 219 T.J. Day Hall. The second lecture, “The Differences between Donkeys and Elephants: Where Genes and Politics Meet,” will be held Tuesday, Feb. 26, at 7 p.m. in 201 Riley Hall.

During the presentations, Hatemi will explore various neurobiological aspects affecting politics, helping to bridge the gap between scientists, policy makers and the public to gain a better understanding of human behavior and improve public policy. What incites the desire to aggress, as opposed to seeking more conciliatory mechanisms of negotiation? Why and how are liberals and conservatives different, and what do these differences mean for human society?

In addition to his work at Penn State, Hatemi is a research fellow at the United States Studies Centre at the University of Sydney. He was trained in political science at the University of Nebraska, and in genetic epidemiology at the Queensland Institute of Medical Research (QIMR). He continued his postdoctoral study in human genetics, psychology and psychiatry at the Virginia Institute for Psychiatric and Behavioral Genetics (VIPBG) in the Medical College of Virginia. He is primarily interested in advancing the study of the neurobiological mechanisms of social and political behaviors and using advanced methods in genetics, physiology, endocrinology and neurology to better understand human decision making in complex political environments. He is also an active member of the Institut for Statskundskab at Syddansk Universitet, VIPBG and the genetic epidemiology lab at QIMR.

Both lectures are free and open to the public. For more information, contact Yanna Weisberg, assistant professor of psychology, at 503-883-2724, yweisber@linfield.edu.