“Diplomacy” and “ethics” are words that describe complex interactions that are aspects of nation-to-nation relationships like that of the US and Mexico as well as with other countries such as US-Somalia and US-Kenya. Technology and the sciences play into this complexity as tools, though often used very differently depending on the worldview of leaders and nations and individuals. The SDSU Viz Center is involved in using largely open-source web services, collaboration, and compassion to assist in complex problems such as the US-Mexico border, Somali, and Kenya. By showing how solutions can be achieved and acting as teaching and mentoring examples for students and First Responders, we can help nurture real solutions forward even during times of conflict rhetoric and natural disasters. Actually seeking to help in diplomacy with preparing for and responding to natural disasters like earthquakes, fires, floods, hurricanes, tsunamis, drought, and disease can build remarkable friendships and shared dependence and resilience. Relationships built in this way also can then extend to difficult topics like refugees and countering human trafficking, criminal networks, art-and-antiquities fraud, and ransomware and other forms of cyber extortion or theft. SDSU is seeking to prepare students for having a positive impact on difficult subjects by serving the public, moving past the media and political narratives, and actually addressing difficult problems regionally and globally. Examples of how this is being done and how it might be applied to current concerns in the region will be discussed in the presentation including local examples linked to global challenges and opportunities.

Guest Speaker
Eric Frost, Viz Center, San Diego State University, directs the SDSU Viz Center and the Homeland Security Graduate Program. Frost and co-workers focus their educational and research efforts on disaster response worldwide and seeking ways to help governments, organizations, and responders with the goals of saving lives, reducing damage, as well as rebuilding after disasters. Viz Center efforts focus on assisting others in building collaboration with many other countries but principally Mexico and optimizing the US-Mexico border with shared goals of prosperity and security using tools such as the Internet of Things, professional relationships, and a shared vision for success.


Thomas R. Scott, Ph.D., is a neuroscientist specializing in sensory processes, with a particular focus on the sense of taste and the neural control of eating. Dr. Scott has published 125 scientific papers and serves on the editorial boards of four journals. He has received the University of Delaware’s Excellence-in-Teaching Award (1981), and has been voted SDSU’s Favorite Faculty Member (2003) by the resident student body. Dr. Scott is also a member of the Ethics Center’s Board of Advisors.

Date & Time

Wednesday, April 5, 2017, 5-7 PM

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