Many scientists argue that the concept of ‘race’ has no biological meaning and that racial classification is a social construct that perpetuates harmful inequities. Others contend that racial groups can genetically differ from one another and that the differences can have medical importance.  In November, professors from the University of California and University of Southern California – including UCI’s Michael Montoya, anthropologist – gathered to debate the issue at the California Science Center’s “Science Matters” program.  Moderated by Tavis Smiley, host of the late night television talk show Tavis Smiley on PBS and The Tavis Smiley Show by Public Radio International (PRI), the program explored policy implications of racial categorization in medical research and attracted more than 600 attendees. 

Listen to their discussion online at

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