Have a gander at our past events...

<< Following year  Previous year >>

Michael Marshall

When?
Monday, February 29 2016 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Michael Marshall

What's the talk about?

Homeopathy is one of the most widely debunked form of alternative medicine – yet homeopathic remedies adorn the shelves of respected pharmacies and are funded by taxpayers on the NHS. How big of a problem is this? Using information and personal experiences gathered during his last 6 years of campaigning against homeopathy, Michael Marshall will highlight how much money is spent on homeopathic remedies, how this gives undeserved credibility to homeopathy, how such remedies can lead to genuine harm and what you can do to help.

Michael Marshall is the Project Director of the Good Thinking Society and the Vice President of the Merseyside Skeptics Society. He regularly speaks with proponents of pseudoscience for the Be Reasonable podcast. His work has seen him organising international homeopathy protests and co-founding the popular QED conference. He has written for the Guardian, The Times and New Statesman.

Why children are great pretenders, poor problem solvers, and sometimes less clever than crows

Sarah Beck

When?
Monday, January 25 2016 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Sarah Beck

What's the talk about?

Young children are excellent imaginers, coming up with all kinds of creative and weird worlds. But what is the imagination really for? Adults use their imaginations to solve problems, but children sometimes struggle with this. In this talk, Sarah will explore how children start to use their imaginations for creative problem solving: using examples of children’s thinking about ‘how things might have been different’ and comparing children’s tool-making to that of clever non-human animals.

Sarah Beck is Reader in Cognitive Development at the University of Birmingham. She researches children's thinking about possibility and time and questions whether adults' thinking in these areas is as sophisticated as we might like to think. She teaches an undergraduate course that compares the cognitive abilities of human children with non-human animals.

Michael Heap

When?
Monday, November 23 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Michael Heap

What's the talk about?

The term ‘hypnosis’ is used to describe a definable range of psychological phenomena that can be experimentally tested in the laboratory with all the rigour, reliability and replicability that characterises the investigation of mainstream psychology. As a result, in recent years a series of highly sophisticated neurocognitive theories of hypnosis have been developed and tested and no person investigating hypnosis now seriously doubts that it is ‘a genuine phenomenon’. Yet there remains something seriously wrong with hypnosis, something that people in the field have always been very reluctant to confront. What the problem is will be revealed and discussed in this talk.

Michael Heap is a clinical forensic psychologist in Sheffield. He has previously held part-time lectureships in psychology and clinical hypnosis at the University of Sheffield. He has written and edited several books on hypnosis. He is chairman and a co-founder of the Association for Skeptical Enquiry.

Iszi Lawrence

When?
Monday, October 26 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Iszi Lawrence

What's the talk about?

Skeptic, comedian and voice of the Skeptics Guide To The Universe, Iszi Lawrence is out to delight and inform with her new show The Z List Dead List. The Z List Dead List is a live comedy show about obscure people from History. As a skeptic, Iszi has found a few people from the past that will pique your interest.

Expect woo, violence, sex and death. And a competition.

The show is also a podcast with guest interviews from Jon Ronson, Griff Rhys Jones, Natalie Haynes, Neil Denny, Richard Herring etc. You can find it on iTunes or from www.zlistdeadlist.com

Evidence that Reason Can Change Minds

Tom Stafford

When?
Monday, September 28 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Tom Stafford

What's the talk about?

Are we irrational creatures, swayed by emotion and entrenched biases? Modern psychology and neuroscience are often reported as showing that we can't overcome our prejudices and selfish motivations.

Challenging this view, cognitive scientist Tom Stafford looks at the actual evidence. Re-analysing classic experiments on persuasion, as well as summarising more recent research into how arguments change minds, he shows why persuasion by reason alone can be a powerful force.

 

Read more here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B010O1Z018

Richard Burdett

When?
Monday, July 27 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Richard Burdett

What's the talk about?

Richard Burdett looks at advertising from both the consumer’s and the advertiser’s perspective. Can consumers trust what they’re seeing, reading, hearing and clicking on? And, in an increasingly fragmented and fractured media environment, can advertisers trust the data on which they’re making multi-million pound investment decisions?

Richard began his career at Saatchi & Saatchi, spending eleven years working with clients such as BA, BP, Cadbury Schweppes and Sainsbury’s. He then moved from advertising to the fledgling world of multi-channel television, initially as Head of Ad Sales for The Discovery Channel and subsequently as Head of Marketing for UKTV. Next stop was Vice Chairman of CIA (now MEC) one of the world’s largest media buying agencies. In 2003 he became Head of 4Creative, Channel 4’s in-house ad agency, working on shows such as Lost, Desperate Housewives, Shameless and Jamie’s School Dinners as well as the launches of More4 and Film4.

He is currently MD of Horse & Country TV, a thematic channel which does exactly what it says on the tin. The channel has brought over fifty new advertisers on to TV and was one of five nominees for Best Factual Channel in this year’s Broadcast awards, up against BBC3, BBC4, Discovery and History.

Suw Charman-Anderson

When?
Monday, June 15 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Suw Charman-Anderson

What's the talk about?

NOTE: THIS EVENT IS ON THE 15TH JUNE, ONE WEEK EARLIER THAN OUR USUAL SLOT.

In 2009, Suw Charman-Anderson founded of Ada Lovelace Day, an international celebration of the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering and maths. With grassroots events held around the world and thousands of people writing and talking about the women who have inspired them, the day seeks to raise women's profiles and highlight unsung heroines.

Suw will talk about why there's a need for such a day, and also about Ada Lovelace herself. Lauded as the first ever computer programmer, Ada was a gifted mathematician, yet today she faces challenges from many voices as to the veracity of her contributions to computer science. So who was Ada? And what do we know about her work on Charles Babbage's Analytical Engine?

Suw is a social technologist and, as one of the UK's social media pioneers, has worked with clients worldwide. A freelance journalist, she has written about social media and technology for The Guardian, CIO Magazine and others.

Learn more about Ada Lovelace Day, 13 October 2015, at www.findingada.com or follow the team on Twitter at @findingada. Suw's blog is at www.chocolateandvodka.com and you can follow her on Twitter as @suw.

Dr. Michael Sutton

When?
Monday, May 25 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Dr. Michael Sutton

What's the talk about?

Patrick Matthew is generally acknowledged as the originator of the theory of natural selection. He published his discovery of  ‘the natural process of selection’ in a book entitled  ‘On Naval and Timber and Arboriculture’ in 1831, which is 27 years before Charles Darwin’s and Alfred Wallace’s papers were read before the Linnean Society in 1858.

The current consensus is that Darwin and Wallace each discovered natural selection independently of Matthew and independently of one another. Moreover, Darwin is hailed as the immortal great thinker on the subject of evolution, because he alone is recognised as first to take his own discovery of the theory of natural selection forward, with many confirmatory evidences, convincing others of its veracity and importance.

In this talk, Mike Sutton will challenge this orthodox view with brand new and independently verifiable evidence, that he uniquely discovered with newly available ‘big data’ research methods, to prove that, pre-1858, Matthew’s 1831 book was read by at least 24 people because they actually cited it in the published literature. Importantly, Mike reveals that at least seven who cited Matthew’s book were naturalists. Most importantly of all, he focuses upon the fact that three of only seven naturalists now known to have cited Matthew’s book were at the very epicentre of influence on Darwin’s and Wallace’s researches. Moreover, two of those three were personal associates and correspondents of Darwin and Wallace. He will show why he believes that Matthew, not Darwin, should now be celebrated as the only independent solver of the problem of species.

Finally, for our sceptical consideration and debate Mike will ask us to think sceptically about whether or not it is a mere tri-coincidence, improbable beyond rational belief, that three out of only seven naturalists known to have cited Matthew’s prior-published book before 1858, containing the full hypothesis of natural selection, played such pivotal roles at the very epicentre of influence and facilitation of Darwin’s and Wallace’s published work on natural selection.’ In other words, is it now more likely than not that Matthew is the sole independent discoverer of the full and complete process of natural selection?

Dr Michael "Mike", Sutton is author of ‘Nullius in Verba: Darwin’s greatest secret’.

Dr Michael "Mike" Sutton is Reader in Criminology at Nottingham Trent University (UK), where he teaches Hi Tech Crime and also Crime Reduction and Community Safety. Before that he worked for 14 years as a senior researcher in the Policing and reducing Crime Unit in the Home Office in London. Mike is the originator of the Market Reduction Approach (MRA) to theft and co-founder and Chief Editor of the open access Internet Journal of Criminology. He is a winner of the British Journal of Criminology Prize for virtual ethnographic research into a pan-European hacking group.

Godwin's Law, Holocaust Denial & Historical Evidence

Vicky Stiles

When?
Monday, April 27 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Vicky Stiles

What's the talk about?

The Third Reich was a large, complex, modern state with a thriving mass media, diverse population, and fruitful trade and cultural links with the rest of the world. The ideology behind National Socialism drew upon well-established strands of nationalist and racialist thinking as well as centuries-old anti-Semitism, and the Nazi Party and its government used cutting-edge technology and techniques to give these ideas the broadest possible audience and appeal.

All too often, this baffling web of networks, policies and overlapping interest groups, which changed constantly over the twelve years the Third Reich lasted, gets reduced to the ideas and actions of just one man. From the top of the ivory tower, to the very bottom of the bottom half of the internet, this talk will explore what Adolf Hitler means to all of us, and how our obsession with him is sucking the meaning out one of our most potent historical symbols: the Holocaust.

Victoria Stiles recently completed a PhD in History at the University of Nottingham and is a co-organiser of the Greater Manchester Skeptics Society. Her research encompasses stereotype formation, the manipulation of evidence and attitudes towards imperialism in Nazi Germany, as well as Anglo-German relations. She occasionally blogs about her sources and what it means to "do" history at tattyjackets.blogspot.com.

Myles Power

When?
Monday, March 23 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Myles Power

What's the talk about?

In the early days of the AIDS epidemic many bizarre and dangerous ideas were advanced regarding the origin of the disease and its cause. Since the discovery of the Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV) these conspiracy theories, which once filled the void left by the lack of information, have all but vanished. Over the past three decades HIV has been the subject of intense scientific research which has resulted in effective treatments, rapid HIV tests, and promising cures. Yet unbelievably there are a small number of people who are sceptical of the “official story”. Although these people are small in numbers they are extremely well funded and can pose a very real threat to public health. Many have chosen to spend their money on spreading their harmful theories, defend people who have irresponsibly infected their partners, and funded the documentary House of Numbers.

The documentary encourages people to come off their medication, tells them that HIV tests don’t work, and that anti-viral drugs such as AZT are the real cause of AIDS. To do this the makers of the documentary make liberal use of out-of-context quotations from scientists interviewed for the film, deceitful editing techniques, and flat out lies. Myles has dedicated a large amount of time to exposing some of the more insidious claims in the documentary. In response there have been multiple Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) violation claims filed against him in an attempt to silence his criticism. They also published his personal information as well as his employ contact details and promoted people to contact them.

In his talk Myles discusses some examples of the dangerous assertions in the documentary and explain how they have led to the death and suffering of hundreds of thousands of people. He will also talk about the failure of the DMCA and how it can be exploited by the proponents of pseudoscience.

Promoting Vulnerability or Building Resilience

Kathryn Ecclestone

When?
Monday, February 23 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Kathryn Ecclestone

What's the talk about?

In this talk, Kathryn will discuss the rise of ‘well-being’ interventions in education and whether these promote vulnerability or build resilience.

Kathryn began her career in education with unemployed 16-19 year olds in the late 1970s before moving into further education to work with adults on Access to Higher Education programmes, young people on vocational courses and teacher training programmes for adult and further education.  Her current research and publications explore the ways in which growing concern about ‘emotional well-being’, ‘resilience’ and  ‘vulnerability’ have encouraged ideas and practices from therapy, counselling and psychology to permeate all areas of education, with profound changes on the teacher/academic/student relationship, teaching, assessment and support systems. 

She has published numerous journal and media articles, books and chapters in books, including The Dangerous Rise of Therapeutic Education (co-authored with Dennis Hayes) in 2009 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Dangerous-Rise-Therapeutic-Education-Teaching-ebook/dp/B0028G99IS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1406809225&sr=8-1&keywords=kathryn+ecclestone

Her latest book is Emotional Well-Being in Policy and Practice. Emotional well-being in policy and practice: interdisciplinary perspectives, London:Routledge

 

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Emotional-Well-Being-Educational-Policy-Practice/dp/0415728495/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&qid=1406809225&sr=8-10&keywords=kathryn+ecclestone

Stephen Farrall

When?
Monday, January 26 2015 at 7:30PM

Download iCalendar file
(e.g. import to Outlook or Google Calendar)

Where?

Farm Road
Sheffield
South Yorkshire S2 2TP

(Press the buzzer to be let in. We are in the back room of the Club.)

Who?
Stephen Farrall

What's the talk about?

In what ways do changes in economic and social policies result in changes in patterns of crime, victimisation and anxieties about crime? How do shifts in social values affect national-level experiences and beliefs about crime and appropriate responses to it (such as support for punitive punishments like the death penalty)? What have been the long-term consequences of almost two decades (1979-1997) of neo-conservative and neo-liberal social and economic policies for the UK’s criminal justice system and the general experience of crime amongst its citizens? Similarly, how do changes in the crime rates affect the sorts of social and economic policies pursued?

What lessons does the recent past offer us today, when policy announcements about further cuts to public expenditure are commonplace and economic growth uncertain and faltering? Using the Thatcher and Major governments (1979- 1997) as our case study, our aim during this Economic and Social Research Council-funded project is to explore the experiences of crime, victimisation and fear of crime at the national and regional levels, and for key socio-demographic groups, since the 1970s (and where possible earlier than this).

Recent publications have outlined our thinking with regards to the ways in which ‘Thatcherite’ social and economic policies in one policy domain (e.g. housing) created ‘spill-over’ effects in other policy domains (such as crime).

Stephen Farrall is Professor of Criminology in the School of Law, Sheffield University. He is currently exploring the long term impacts of Thatcherite social and economic policies on crime in England and Wales (funded by the ESRC) and has also researched why people stop offending and the fear of crime.

http://www.shef.ac.uk/law/research/projects/crimetrajectories

https://twitter.com/Thatcher_legacy