Scholar Spotlight: Anna Bokov

How do we teach something we don’t yet know? In today’s Scholar Spotlight, Historical Studies Member Anna Bokov discusses her research on architecture and design pedagogy, the pursuit of truth and beauty, and breaking the rules (and making your own).

Flares from the Milky Way’s Supermassive Black Hole

"Sgr A*, the 4.6-million-solar-mass black hole that lies at the center of the Milky Way, is normally a fairly quiet beast," but a new study by Lena Murchikova explores how in May 2019 it suddenly became substantially more active than usual, producing an unprecedented bright, near-infrared flare that lasted roughly 2.5 hours. 

Covid-19 Updates

As of September 8, the Institute campus has partially reopened, and Faculty, Members, and a limited number of essential staff may request access to work in their offices. The Health Screening Form must be completed each morning before coming to campus and approved by the IAS Covid-19 Response Team. 

* At this time, the Institute's academic campus is accessible only to the IAS community, and is not open to nonessential visitors, members of the public, or family members, including children. 

We have created a series of Return-to-Campus guides that contain more information and should be consulted before coming to campus. 

Travelers and residents entering New Jersey from any U.S. state or territory beyond the immediate region (New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Delaware) should self-quarantine for 10 days. Individuals who test negative on a viral test for Covid-19 must self-quarantine for 7 full days. For the most up-to-date information, view New Jersey Covid FAQs

Additionally, individuals who leave the state of New Jersey for more than 24 hours must complete the IAS Travel Questionnaire upon their return. 

The State of New Jersey’s mandate requires everyone to wear a face covering indoors, including common spaces, hallways, and libraries—even if you are the only person in the space. If you are working in a private office and another person enters, please put your face covering on and stay at least six feet apart. Outdoors, face coverings also should be worn if social distancing isn't possible.

Read more.

Wormholes Open for Transport

[Updated March 23] Wormholes are spacetime connections between distant spacetime regions. In previous work, Carl P. Feinberg Professor Juan Maldacena, Alexey Milekhin, and Fedor Popov constructed microscopic wormholes using the known laws of physics and the matter of the Standard Model of particle physics. Now, Maldacena and Milekhin have provided solutions for larger wormholes by postulating a very special type of dark matter.

Out of Prison But Still Trapped

"I want us to think about all these traps that we've created, we've produced, and I want us to unmake them." NPR's Terry Gross interviews former IAS Member and current University of Chicago professor Reuben Jonathan Miller, who estimates that there are 45,000 "laws, policies and administrative sanctions" in the U.S. that target people with criminal records.