Press Review 7.27.18

Last update: 2022-04-22 09:55:27

An international team of computer scientists, philosophers, religious scholars, among others are working together on the Modeling Religion Project. The team’s goals are to provide politicians with an empirical tool to experiment with policy options. “Add in 50,000 newcomers, say, and invest heavily in education. How does the artificial society change? The model tells you. Don’t like it? Just hit that reset button and try a different policy.” Sigal Samuel for the Atlantic explains the ethical as well as political implications for using artificial intelligence to analyze and then influence societal outcomes, such as formation of religious identity.


Accused with links to the outlawed Gulenists, and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party, long time Turkish resident Andrew Brunson remains under house-arrest despite Trump administration demands on the Turkish government to release him. Evangelical Christian Mike Pence, as well as evangelical Mike Pompeo have taken a heightened interest in gaining release for Brunson, evangelical pastor from North Carolina. Staff at BBC News explain the further threats the US has made against Turkey on behalf of the pastor’s release.


Malaka Gharib explains the recent work of aid organization Translators Without Borders, which in partnership with Oxfam and UNICEF has created an online glossary for humanitarians working in Rohingya camps in Bangladesh. Cox’s Bazar in Bangladesh is home to nearly 1 million refugees, but the local dialect of the area is a barrier to Rohingya access to proper health care, explains Gharib. The ever-changing glossary that can be accessed through mobile phone apps is one step toward validating the cultural identities and rights of the millions of relocated people.


Since the conflict in Syria began more than 7 years ago, tens of thousands of people disappeared in government run jails. Many died in custody, explain Ben Hubbard and Karam Shoumali for the New York Times. In recent weeks the Syrian regime has released the documents declaring these taken persons dead, the first public acknowledgement by the state that hundreds, if not thousands died in state custody.