Event Archive

Audio or video files for some of our past events will be posted here as they become available.

Thinking Evolutionarily: Evolution Education Across the Life Sciences

On October 25-26, 2011, the National Research Council's Board on Life Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences will hold a convocation at the Carnegie Institution for Science in Washington, DC that will launch a national initiative to infuse evolutionary science into introductory college courses in the life sciences and upper-level biology courses in high schools across the United States. The convocation will feature invited speakers and panelists, and participant discussion sessions.

This event will enable educational leaders, members of professional scientific societies, and members of other scientific and science education organizations to develop a strategic plan that will develop a national database of resources from disciplines across the life sciences to help faculty make evolutionary science a central focus of introductory biology survey courses and other courses across the life sciences curriculum.

April 5-14, 2010
Visual Culture and Evolution Online Symposium

An international panel of over 30 scientists, artists, historians, writers and other experts as discussed the nexus between visual culture and evolution. In 2009, in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the publication of Darwin's On the Origin of Species, a number of festivals, celebrations, and conferences were held around the world focusing on the impact of the concept of evolution. This symposium was a platform to discuss the ideas generated from the activities generated during "The Year of Darwin," and the present impact of evolutionary thought on both art and science.

June 8, 2009
Audio: "Evolution Matters"
David Hillis

How is evolution relevant to everyday life? David Hillis argues that evolution is central to responding to the threat of emerging diseases, for solving certain crimes, and for identifying agents of bioterrorism, among other uses. Hillis shares applications of evolution to real life issues and explains why it is critical for tomorrow's citizens to understand the relationships of living things.

David Hillis is the Alfred W. Roark Centennial Professor and Director of the Center for Computational Biology and Bioinformatics at the University of Texas at Austin.

April 13, 2009
Audio: "Communicating About Evolution"
Matthew Nisbet

How can scientists and lovers of science communicate effectively with students and the public? Long gone is the assumption that mountains of evidence are sufficient to change opinions. Instead, Matthew Nisbet argues that scientists need to understand audiences' worldviews and values. He outlines methods for engaging diverse audiences around the meaning and implications of evolutionary sciences.

Matthew Nisbet is Assistant Professor in the School of Communication at American University. He has conducted research and written extensively about communication dynamics in policy debates.

April 2, 2009
Audio: "Evolution and the Future of the Earth"
E.O. Wilson

World-renowned naturalist and conservationist Edward O. Wilson speaks at the National Academy of Sciences' ninth annual Arthur M. Sackler colloquium. Wilson, an NAS member, is professor emeritus at Harvard University and honorary curator in entomology of the Museum of Comparative Zoology.

March 25, 2009
Video: "Your Inner Fish"
Neil Shubin

What does the human hand have in common with the wing of a fly? Are breasts, sweat glands, and scales related? To understand the inner workings of our bodies and the origins of diseases, scientists turn to unexpected sources like worms, flies, and even fish. Dr. Shubin tells the story of evolution by tracing the organs of the human body back millions of years, long before the first creatures walked the earth.

Neil Shubin is the author of Your Inner Fish (Pantheon, 2008) and Associate Dean and Professor of Organismal Biology and Anatomy at the University of Chicago.

Feb. 11-12, 2009
Watch video from NAS's symposium on biodiversity policy. The symposium, in honor of the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin, focused on biodiversity and ecosystems and their relevance to key policy issues such as climate change and energy; trade; pests and pathogens; and food security.

Feb. 9, 2009
Video: "Brain Evolution: Lessons from Birds and Humans Who Sing and Talk"
Erich Jarvis

Whether you love listening to songbirds, enjoy singing, wonder how language evolved, or marvel at the organization of the brain, Erich Jarvis has scientific news for you. His cutting edge research on vocal learning in birds has revolutionized our understanding of vertebrate brain organization and evolution.

Erich Jarvis is an Associate Professor of Neurobiology at Duke University, a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator, and the recipient of the prestigious NIH Pioneer Award.

Feb. 2 - Oct. 22, 2009
On the Origin of Species (after Darwin)
Tim Rollins + K.O.S

The art exhibit "On the Origin of Species (after Darwin)" by Tim Rollins + K.O.S. was commissioned by Cultural Programs of the National Academy of Sciences in celebration of the 150th anniversary of the publication of On the Origin of Species (November 24, 1859) and the 200th anniversary of Darwin's birth (February 12, 1809).

Feb. 2 - June 15, 2009
Rewriting the Book of Nature: Charles Darwin & the Rise of Evolutionary Theory

To mark the 200th anniversary of Darwin's birth and the 150th anniversary of the publication of his groundbreaking work, the National Library of Medicine and the Office of NIH History created an exhibition that focused on Darwin's books, the development of his theory, and the history of evolutionary discourse from the late eighteenth century to the early decades of the twentieth.