The Arnold Arboretum's sesquicentennial Director's Series traces the Arnold’s significance in the landscape architecture movement, value for the people of Boston, and leadership in creating global connections between plants and people.
Dr. Michelle Kondo, Research Social Scientist, UDSA-Forest Service
Rev. Mariama White-Hammond, Chief of Environment, Energy, and Open Space, City of Boston
Laurence Cotton, Consulting Producer, “Frederick Law Olmsted: Designing...
Center for Astrophysics | Harvard & Smithsonian—Online
Join the CfA live from the Smithsonian Castle in Washington, DC to learn about exciting new results from the Event Horizon Telescope (EHT), the team that brought us the first-ever image of a black hole!
Moderated by Smithsonian Under Secretary for Science and Research and former Chief Scientist at NASA, Dr. Ellen Stofan, this event will be live streamed and is open to the public. Panelists will include Shep Doeleman, founding director of the EHT; Kari Haworth chief technology officer of the CfA; and astrophysicists Angelo Ricarte and Paul Tiede.
Heather Knight will present work from the Collaborative Humans and Robotics: Interaction, Sociability, Machine learning and Art (CHARISMA) robotics lab at Oregon State University (OSU). The pandemic has brought increasing automation into everyday human spaces, making ever more relevant CHARISMA’s work in service robots, expressive communication, and autonomous and human-in-the-loop robot behavior systems.
Using examples from 20 years in the field, this talk illustrates...
Harvard Division of Science, Harvard Library, and Harvard Book Store—Online
By the time a baby is born, its brain is equipped with billions of intricately crafted neurons wired together through trillions of interconnections to form a compact and breathtakingly efficient supercomputer. "Zero to Birth" takes you on an extraordinary journey to the very edge of creation, from the moment of an egg’s fertilization through each step of a human brain’s development in the womb―and even a little beyond.
Signs of ancient collisions are widespread in the solar system, from the barren, once-habitable Mars to rugged asteroids. In this talk, physicist Simone Marchi, discussing his recent book, Colliding Worlds (Oxford University Press, 2021), will explore the key role that collisions in space have played in the formation and evolution of our solar system, the development of planets, and possibly even the origin of life on Earth. Analyzing our current understanding of the surfaces of Mars, the Moon, and asteroids—drawn from recent space missions—Marchi will present the dramatic...
Ladee Hubbard is a writer whose most recent novel is “The Rib King” (Amistad, 2021). In this lecture, she will discuss her current project, a novel that examines the implications of the ways in which Black people in the United States have historically been represented as an internal threat to both public health and safety, placing the 1980s War on Drugs in dialogue with the larger history of African Americans being used in drug trials and medical experiments.
Do snakes have bones? Can a turtle crawl out of its shell? How far could you jump if you were a frog? Looking at skeletons can help us answer these questions! Comparing the skeletons of different animals can help us learn more about how they live and move. Join human museum staffers Arielle and Javier as they lead you in a 45-minute program with live animals and specimens from the museum collections. This event will be fun for the whole family so bring your questions and sense of wonder.
Caroline Buckee is a professor of epidemiology and the associate director of the Center for Communicable Disease Dynamics the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She is writing a book focused on the impact of gold mining on the epidemiology and control of malaria in the Amazon rainforest while concurrently examining infectious disease epidemiology as a field of study, using malaria as an example. Join her to hear more about her current research.
Classical deterministic time evolutions exist with apparent random features, as is seen in hydrodynamic turbulence. Such phenomena have been called deterministic chaos, and are associated with sensitive dependence on initial conditions.
We discuss chaos theory with emphasis on the multidisciplinary work concerning chaos in natural phenomena during the three decades 1970-2000. Work in that period has involved developments in pure mathematics, new experimental techniques, and the use of digital computers. The problems addressed include hydrodynamical turbulence, meteorology,...
Livestreamed or at Weld Hill Research Building, 1300 Centre St., Boston
The Arnold Arboretum was founded on Friday, March 29, 1872. Exactly 150 years later, we invite you to join Lisa Pearson, Head of the Arboretum Library and Archives, for a special sesquicentennial lecture! Pearson will discuss the earliest benefactors of the Arboretum, the events surrounding the founding of the institution, and the busy first two decades during which the infrastructure and living collections were installed on the grounds.
This event will also be livestreamed to YouTube. To sign up for the virtual livestream instead,...
How long does it take for an ecosystem to recover after it is disturbed or destroyed by human activities? How do we know when an ecosystem has recovered? In this lecture, restoration ecologist David Moreno Mateos will discuss the traditional methods used to assess the recovery of terrestrial ecosystems—such as changes in biodiversity or soil carbon levels—and highlight their limitations. He will make a case for more comprehensive and long-term approaches to understanding and measuring ecosystem recovery and highlight their potential for enhancing environmental policies and large-scale...
In the natural world, animals have all sorts of fascinating ways in which they grow. From tadpoles changing into bullfrogs to baby turtles becoming goliaths, growing up is a big part of life! Learn about the different life cycles and life histories of some of our favorite museum animals and how they’ve grown over time. Join human museum staffers Javier and Arielle, as they lead you in a 45-minute program with live animals and specimens from the museum collections. This event will be fun for the whole family so bring your questions and sense of wonder.
Timnit Gebru is the founder and executive director of the Distributed Artificial Intelligence Research Institute (DAIR). Prior to that she was fired by Google—where she was serving as co-lead of the Ethical AI research team—in December 2020 for raising issues of discrimination in the workplace. Timnit also cofounded Black in AI, a nonprofit that works to increase the presence, inclusion, visibility, and health of Black people in the field of AI; and is on the board of AddisCoder, a nonprofit dedicated to teaching algorithms and computer programming to Ethiopian high school students, free...
Mind Brain Behavior Interfaculty Initiative at Harvard—Online
When aliens touchdown on Earth, linguistics professor Louise Banks (Amy Adams) and her team are tasked with determining why they are here and what they want. Our experts will discuss and debate the challenges that may arise in communicating with alien lifeforms and where the film succeeded and/or failed in this regard.
Online or at Harvard Radcliffe Institute, Knafel Center, 10 Garden St., Cambridge
The speakers in “Next in Climate Change” will discuss emerging scientific research and multi-dimensional implications of climate change for people, society, and our planet. The program will focus on five critical areas of inquiry and the connections among them: extreme weather and its impacts on communities, infrastructure, and the environment; economic effects of climate change, as well as economic opportunities; consequences of climate change on global health, ranging from cancer to pandemics; impacts on particularly vulnerable populations; and approaches to mitigation for the...
Technology is now part of our lives in ways that were not possible only 10-20 years ago. Smart devices, like watches, phones, and speakers, can gather vast amounts of information about their users, often without the user’s knowledge or consent. As technology continues to improve, many of these devices may also be leveraged to serve diagnostic functions. Technologies such as Amazon's Alexa and Google's Assistant can ambiently and continually monitor a variety of information about an individual’s location, voice, and movement. As this technology merges with wearables, such as the Apple...
Make a difference as an Arnold Arboretum Field Study Guide! Training for the spring season of school programs at the Arboretum begins March 29. We are looking for outgoing and mature adults who can commit to two years of volunteering. You do not need to know about plants, but experience working with children is preferred. If you are interested, please complete an application by March 11 for an interview.
Scientists, health leaders, and politicians alike have described COP26 as our last, best chance to slow global warming and stave off some of the worst health effects of climate change. But the political environment remains fraught. And it’s unclear how rhetoric will translate into action.
Our expert panel brings together leading voices in the fight against climate change, fresh from the halls of the COP26 Summit. They’ll talk through key outcomes and next steps. Bring questions!