Science lectures for the public

I have been known to complain* about the fact that scientists aren’t reaching out to evangelize about how fascinating this stuff really is. And how relevant. And how important. We don’t have a Sunday morning pulpit that pulls people in, pins them down, and talks to them. When I worked for the National Park Service at Lowell some years ago we would talk about how the factory workers had the opportunity to attend great lectures on many topics in the evenings. The lecture circuit was important and well-attended. It provided a basis for shared understanding and discussion.

I attend talks on a pretty regular basis. (Actually–that reminds me–there is one in Lexington I had almost forgotten about: Jim Hansen on Sunday: Censoring Science) But I have been wishing there was more outreach by scientists to the public.

So just a few moments ago I got an email from the National Academy of Sciences about a lecture series for this summer. Aimed at the general public, there are talks on nanomedicine, medical devices, global cooperation, obesity and the causes, bacterial communication, and even caves!

Distinctive Voices@The Jonsson Center is the program, at Woods Hole. I may just check out a couple. I wish they were a little closer, though… Putting them where the people are would be a nice next step.

*Oh, I don’t just complain. I act on that. ScienceDebate2008Photobucket