Events

    2019 Sep 18

    The Ancient Maya Response to Climate Change: A Cautionary Tale

    6:00pm

    Location: 

    Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St., Cambridge

    Ancient Maya civilization—known for its cities, monumental architecture, ceramics, hieroglyphic writing, and advanced understanding of mathematics and astronomy—suffered a major demise between the tenth and eleventh centuries. The causes continue to be investigated and debated. Paleoenvironmental research over the past twenty years has revealed that the demise coincided with a prolonged intensive drought that extended across the region, providing compelling evidence that climate change played a key role in the collapse of the Maya.

    In this lecture, Billie Turner will examine...

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    2019 Sep 17

    Lecture and Book Signing: Assembling the Dinosaur

    6:00pm

    Location: 

    Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St., Cambridge

    Join the Harvard Museum of Natural History and the Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments for a free lecture and book signing by Lukas Rieppell, David and Michelle Ebersman Assistant Professor of History at Brown University.

    Dinosaur fossils were first found in England, but a series of late-nineteenth-century discoveries in the American West turned the United States into a world center for vertebrate paleontology. Around the same time, the United States also emerged as an economic powerhouse of global proportions, and large, fierce, and spectacular creatures...

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    2019 Aug 31

    Exhibition: Fruits in Decay

    Sat Aug 31 (All day) to Sun Mar 1 (All day)

    Location: 

    Harvard Museum of Natural History, 26 Oxford St., Cambridge

    Fruits in Decay is a new special exhibit in the Glass Flowers gallery that explores blight, rot, and other diseases on summer fruits. It features exquisitely detailed glass botanical models of strawberries, peaches, apricots, plums, and pears made by famed glass artist Rudolf Blaschka. On display for the first time in nearly two decades, these models capture—with astonishing realism—the intricacies and strange beauty of fruits in various stages of decay.

    Learn...

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    2019 Jul 20

    A Lunar Soirée

    7:00pm to 10:00pm

    Location: 

    Harvard Museum of Natural History, 26 Oxford St., Cambridge

    Celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the 1969 moon landing at this one-of-a-kind evening event exclusively for guests 21+. Enjoy cocktails, beer, light refreshments, and 60s music, as well as moon-inspired demonstrations and activities. More details on the full program coming soon!

    Cost: $20 for members; $25 for nonmembers.

    Learn more about A Lunar Soirée. 

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    2019 Jul 20

    Exhibition: Cosmic Origins

    Sat Jul 20 (All day) to Wed Nov 27 (All day)

    Location: 

    Harvard Museum of Natural History, 26 Oxford St., Cambridge

    On July 20, 2019, the Harvard Museum of Natural History marked the fiftieth anniversary of the first manned mission to the Moon with the unveiling of Cosmic Origins. Visitors to this new mini-exhibit—located within the Earth & Planetary Sciences exhibition—will investigate the origins of and processes shaping planetary bodies and stars using touchable specimens, colorful visuals, and interactive media.

    Through November 27, 2019, the exhibit will also feature an original lunar specimen on loan from NASA, collected during the Apollo 12 mission. Don’t miss the...

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    2019 Jul 13

    Exploring Science Together: Bugs!

    10:30am to 12:00pm

    Location: 

    Harvard Museum of Natural History, 26 Oxford St., Cambridge

    Take a closer look and explore the world of minuscule bugs! Learn through hands-on activities designed to show you how to classify and identify these numerous and diverse creatures! Participate in activities in our incredible arthropods gallery. Observe and touch live invertebrates, and then go outside and collect some of your own. Dig in the dirt and learn how invertebrates help people compost food waste into soil. Create your own scientific equipment that will help you continue the study of entomology at home.

    All activities are designed to be fun and interactive experiences...

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    2019 Jul 11

    Exhibition Tour: Small Steps, Giant Leaps

    12:30pm to 1:15pm

    Location: 

    Edison and Newman Room, Houghton Library, Harvard Yard, Cambridge

    Join curator John Overholt for a guided tour of the exhibition Small Steps, Giant Leaps to learn about the ways early modern science inspired and made possible the historic Apollo 11 moon landing.

    Tours are free and open to the public. No reservation is required.

    Exhibition Tours are also offered on the following dates:

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    2019 Jun 26

    Exhibition Tour: Small Steps, Giant Leaps

    5:30pm to 6:15pm

    Location: 

    Edison and Newman Room, Houghton Library, Harvard Yard, Cambridge

    Join curator John Overholt for a guided tour of the exhibition Small Steps, Giant Leaps to learn about the ways early modern science inspired and made possible the historic Apollo 11 moon landing.

    Tours are free and open to the public. No reservation is required.

    Learn more about Exhibition Tour: Small Steps, Giant Leaps.

     

     

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    2019 Jun 20

    Exhibition Tour: Small Steps, Giant Leaps

    4:30pm to 5:15pm

    Location: 

    Edison and Newman Room, Houghton Library, Harvard Yard, Cambridge

    Join curator John Overholt for a guided tour of the exhibition Small Steps, Giant Leaps to learn about the ways early modern science inspired and made possible the historic Apollo 11 moon landing.

    Following this tour will be a a screening of The Right Stuff (1983) at the Harvard Film Archive at 5:30pm

    An Exhibition Tour will also be offered on...

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    2019 Jun 08

    Moon Medley

    3:00pm to 4:10pm

    Location: 

    Harvard Film Archive, 24 Quincy St., Cambridge

    In collaboration with Houghton Library’s celebration of the moon landing’s 50th anniversary, the Harvard Film Archive presents films about humans’ exploration of that final frontier. This program features "A Trip to the Moon" with live musical accompaniment, "A Grand Day Out," "One Small Step," and more family-friendly short films!

    Cost: $5 Weekend Matinee Admission or free with Cambridge Public Library Card.

    ...

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    2019 Jun 05

    Harvard Science Book Talk: Graham Farmelo

    6:00pm

    Location: 

    Science Center Hall D, One Oxford St., Cambridge

    In The Universe Speaks in Numbers, Graham Farmelo, the award-winning author of The Strangest Man and Churchill's Bomb, takes his readers on a journey from the Scientific Revolution to string theory, highlighting the role of mathematics in guiding the search for the most fundamental laws of nature.

    In this talk, he will be joined by Harvard's own Jacob Barandes in conversation about this new book which explores how the harmonies between physics and mathematics enrich and deepen our understanding of the universe.

    ...

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    2019 May 22

    Ethnobotany at Harvard

    12:00pm to 2:00pm

    Location: 

    Harvard University Herbaria, 22 Divinity Ave., Cambridge

    Historically, plants have provided humans with most of our drugs, fibers, food, dyes, perfumes, building materials, and even musical instruments. But how has this diverse and fascinating field been studied and what has been learned? In fact, for over 100 years, Harvard has played a pivotal role in the study of human-plant interactions, leading to the creation of the field of ethnobotany.

    In this interactive lecture we will explore the science and history of some of the most important Harvard botanists and explorers through their unique specimens—now housed in the Harvard...

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    2019 May 16

    Footprints On Another World: Apollo Plus 50

    7:30pm

    Location: 

    Phillips Auditorium, 60 Garden St., Cambridge

    Half a century later, Dr. Jonathan McDowell will look back at humanity's first voyages to another world. In December 1968, the crew of Apollo 8 became the first people to enter the gravitational sphere of the Moon, and seven months later, Armstrong and Aldrin headed for the surface in Apollo 11. Meanwhile, the Soviet Union's moon rocket exploded disastrously as its robot probes competed with NASA astronauts in the race to bring home the first moon rocks. Dr. McDowell will explain how the first landing stood at the tip of an immense effort as engineers from California to Cambridge, MA...

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    2019 May 02

    The Human Swarm: How Societies Arise, Thrive, and Fall

    6:00pm

    Location: 

    Geological Lecture Hall, 24 Oxford St., Cambridge

    Join us for a free lecture and book signing by Mark W. Moffett. Based on his new book, The Human Swarm: How Societies Arise, Thrive, and Fall (Basic Books, April 2019), Moffett will discuss the social adaptations that bind societies and distinguish humans from other animal species. Drawing on findings in psychology, sociology, and anthropology, he explores how human society evolved from intimate chimp communities into sprawling civilizations of unrivaled complexity–and will address what is required to sustain them.

    ...

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    2019 May 02

    Why Brain Science Needs an Edit: Non-human Primate Studies in Neuroscience and Biomedicine

    4:15pm

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Knafel Center, 10 Garden St., Cambridge

    This lecture will feature Dr. Mu-ming Poo, the founding director of the Institute of Neuroscience at the Shanghai Institutes for Biological Sciences. In his talk, Dr. Poo will discuss the use of gene-editing tools such as CRISPR in efforts to develop a macaque monkey behavioral model for studying self-consciousness. He will also address the relevant ethical issues associated with gene editing and the use of non-human primates in biomedical research.

    ...

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    2019 Apr 30

    Our Extravagant Universe: The Undiscovery of Cosmic Deceleration

    5:00pm

    Location: 

    Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Knafel Center, 10 Garden St., Cambridge

    Astronomers have known about the expansion of the universe for nearly a hundred years. Twenty years ago, when we set out to use exploding stars to measure gravity’s predicted effect, we discovered the expansion of the universe to be speeding up! This (un)discovery has been attributed to a “dark energy” that dominates the universe, whose nature is a deep mystery at the heart of physics. Robert P. Kirshner, Clowes Professor of Science, emeritus, Harvard Faculty of Arts and Sciences, will explain this phenomenon of cosmic acceleration.

    ...

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