Few have covered the climate crisis as deeply and as thoughtfully as Elizabeth Kolbert. Her work includes Field Notes from a Catastrophe (2007), the Pulitzer-prize winning The Sixth Extinction (2016), and her latest Under a White Sky (2021), “a book about people trying to solve problems caused by people...
The Harvard Museum of Natural History inspires college students and life-long learners to explore a myriad of scientific and creative pursuits. In this program, a group of professionals discuss how their experiences in the museum inspired their careers in science communication and storytelling, while they share images and videos of their favorite museum specimens and stories.
Presented in collaboration with the Harvard University Chapter of Storywish, a student-run organization that empowers chronically ill children to read, write, and share their own...
As the world has sought to understand the causes and impacts of climate change, the topic has long been situated within the domain of science. In the 21st century, data, studies, reports, and academic/technical discourses have been the central mechanisms by which we learn about and process climate change: its consequences, our roles, and possible solutions. In recent years, however, artists and cultural institutions have developed a powerful interest in the topic and begun to employ myriad strategies by which to explore, draw attention to, and process it. There is an evolving...
Across the United States, children under the age of 18 can be tried as adults in criminal court. Although the practice is condemned by international law, we are the only country in the world that sentences young people to life in prison without the possibility of parole. At the same time, recent developments in neuroscience research demonstrate that the human brain is not fully developed until after the age of 25.
This program will consider the ways we punish young people in the American criminal legal system and how our policies could be reformed. We will bring together a...
To what extent is our future with COVID-19 knowable? As new information about the transmission, demographics, and treatment of COVID-19 emerge, epidemiologists continue to address complex data and generate new predictive models to better understand the dynamics of the virus. Join leading epidemiologists for a panel discussion as they assess the current and future state of the epidemic.
This event is free and open to the public, but registration is required.
Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard—Online
The Next in Science series provides an opportunity for early-career scientists whose creative, cross-disciplinary research is thematically linked to introduce their work to one another, to fellow scientists, and to nonspecialists from Harvard and the greater Boston area. The speakers in this program will discuss water’s vital role across four areas of modern inquiry: biology, earth science, public health, and the search for extraterrestrial life.
Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Knafel Center, 10 Garden St., Cambridge
Gene editing holds extraordinary promise but also raises serious legal and ethical issues. In this science symposium, leading scientists, clinicians, and ethicists will explore case studies of particular therapies and the legal and bioethical implications of gene editing.
Lobster War is an award-winning documentary film about a conflict between the United States and Canada over waters that both countries have claimed since the end of the Revolutionary War. The disputed 277 square miles of sea known as the Gray Zone were traditionally fished by U.S. lobstermen. But as the Gulf of Maine has warmed faster than nearly any other body of water on the planet, the area’s previously modest lobster population has surged. As a result, Canadians have begun to assert their sovereignty, warring with the Americans to claim the bounty.
Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Knafel Center, 10 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA 02138
The Next in Science series provides an opportunity for early-career scientists whose creative, cross-disciplinary research is thematically linked to introduce their work to one another, to fellow scientists, and to nonspecialists from Harvard and the greater Boston area. The focus of this year’s program is in the study of evolution. In this program, two leading researchers will explore the genetic impact of Neanderthal interbreeding with modern humans and consider how people migrated, adapted, and mixed over the course of human history. Two...
Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Knafel Center, 10 Garden Street, Cambridge, MA
To paraphrase Louis Pasteur, sometimes luck favors the prepared mind, as when Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin by noticing that mold growing accidentally in his lab seemed to kill bacteria. This 2018 Radcliffe Institute science symposium will focus on how scientists explore realities they cannot anticipate. Speakers from across the disciplines of modern science will present personal experiences and discuss how to train scientists, educators, and funders to foster the expertise and open-mindedness needed to reveal undiscovered aspects of the world around us.
Epidemic disease spreads quickly in our interconnected, globalized world. This symposium looks at new ways of tracking epidemics using big data and social networks to predict and stem the rise of emergent diseases.... Read more about Contagion: Exploring Modern Epidemics