Making New Worlds-logo

Making New Worlds

Science >

More Information


United States






Ep 13: Should We Settle Space?

For the last episode of Making New Worlds, we ask the question we skipped at the very beginning: Should we settle space? Featuring answers by many of our guests from previous episodes. The transcript for this episode is below. Imagine this: You live on Earth, in 2018, still the early decades of the space age. … Continue reading "Ep 13: Should We Settle Space?"


Ep 12: What Do You Think?

What do you think about the space settlement ethics topics we’ve covered in the podcast so far? This episode includes comments and feedback from members of the Making New Worlds audience. The transcript for this episode is below. Welcome to Making New Worlds. I’m Erika Nesvold. For the past eleven episodes, I’ve been talking to … Continue reading "Ep 12: What Do You Think?"


Ep 11: Which Way Is Mecca?

How will people of faith adapt their religious practices to the space environment? How will our cultural values help us adapt to life in space? Christian theologian Michael Waltemathe and Muslim theologian Mehmet Ozalp discuss examples of how the limitations of space will affect religious rituals and traditions. And Alaskan Native Alice Glenn describes how … Continue reading "Ep 11: Which Way Is Mecca?"


Ep 10: What If I Get Sick?

How can we prepare for medical emergencies in a space settlement? What equipment should we bring? What kinds of doctors? When resources are limited, who do we decide to treat first? Physician Ken Iserson talks about the lessons we can learn from remote and disaster medicine here on Earth. Philosopher Keith Abney highlights the ethical … Continue reading "Ep 10: What If I Get Sick?"


Ep 09: What If There’s Already Life on Mars?

How do we make sure we don’t bring harmful extraterrestrial microorganisms back to Earth from space? How do we keep our Earth microbes from contaminating potentially habitable worlds like Mars or Europa? How much effort do we really need to put into protecting these hypothetical lifeforms? SETI marine biologist Margaret Race joins us to explain … Continue reading "Ep 09: What If There’s Already Life on Mars?"


Ep 08: Should We Make Mars More Like Earth?

How do we balance out our hunger for resources in space with the desire to preserve the space environment for future generations? Will something inherently valuable and important be lost when we start transforming the Moon or Mars to extract resources and make habitats where we can live? How should we preserve our history on … Continue reading "Ep 08: Should We Make Mars More Like Earth?"


Ep 07: What If I Want to Have Kids?

How do we sustain a stable population in our future space settlements? Do we require settlers to reproduce? How do we limit population growth when resources are scarce? What rights do children born in space have? Is it even possible to safely raise children in space? Physician Shawna Pandya joins us for a discussion of … Continue reading "Ep 07: What If I Want to Have Kids?"


Call for Feedback

Making New Worlds will resume in 2018, but today we have a quick announcement to make about our upcoming audience feedback episode. The transcript for this announcement is below. Hi, everyone! This is Erika Nesvold. Making New Worlds will return with new episodes in 2018. But I wanted to make a quick announcement today. The … Continue reading "Call for Feedback"


Ep 06: Who’s in Charge?

Who will make the decisions in future space settlements? Will they be governed remotely by nations on Earth? Will settlements develop their own local governments? How will conflicts between settlements and with nations back on Earth be resolved? Are we facing a future of war in space? Space lawyers Laura Montgomery and Christopher Newman join … Continue reading "Ep 06: Who’s in Charge?"


Ep 05: What If Someone Steals My Stuff?

How will we handle it when someone breaks the rules of our new societies in space? Who decides whether they’re guilty? Do we need to build space prisons? Or are there alternative forms of justice we should consider that would better suit our new civilization? Space lawyer Christopher Newman talks to us about the potential … Continue reading "Ep 05: What If Someone Steals My Stuff?"


Ep 04: Where’s My Money?

Once we’ve reached out space settlements, what do we do next? What kind of jobs will be available, and what kind of economy will we have? What kinds of rights do we have as workers in space, and what will we do if our employer tries to exploit us while we’re stuck far from home? … Continue reading "Ep 04: Where’s My Money?"


Ep 03: Who Owns Mars?

Once we’ve taken that giant leap for mankind and have set foot on a new world, we have to ask: Who actually owns the land we’re standing on? If you’re planning on making your fortune in space by mining or farming or building new habitats, how do you get the rights to work that territory? … Continue reading "Ep 03: Who Owns Mars?"


Ep 02: Who Gets to Go?

Before we can head out into space, we have to ask: Who gets to go? What will the population of space settlers look like? Who will be allowed to go, and who will be left behind? Historian Donna Gabaccia rejoins us to talk about what kind of people have migrated to new places on Earth … Continue reading "Ep 02: Who Gets to Go?"


Ep 01: Why Are We Going?

Welcome to the first episode of Making New Worlds: Why Are We Going? Examining our motivations for settling space. We talk to historian Donna Gabaccia about the historical reasons for human migration on the Earth. Sociologist Zuleyka Zevallos weighs in on the harmful effects of colonialism when planning a space settlement. Sci-fi author and scientist … Continue reading "Ep 01: Why Are We Going?"



Welcome to Making New Worlds, a podcast about the ethical issues of human settlements in space. Here’s a quick trailer to give you a taste of the kinds of questions the podcast will explore. Please share far and wide, and stay tuned! Episodes will be released on iTunes every Wednesday morning starting next week, November … Continue reading "Trailer"