Clicky

2012 Festival Events

May 30 - June 3

Show: Full Entries | Agenda View

Tuesday

Top ^

Wednesday

  • Icarus at the Edge of Time

    LeVar Burton, Al + Al, Philip Glass, Brian Greene, David Henry Hwang, Brad Lubman, Orchestra of St. Luke’s United Palace Theatre

    Icarus at the Edge of Time is the story of a courageous boy who challenges the awesome might of a black hole. This stunning, full-orchestral work with animated film and live narrator brings a powerful modern twist to a classic myth, taking audiences of all ages on a whirlwind voyage through space and time, to the very edge of understanding. Featuring an original orchestral score by Philip Glass, performed by the Orchestra of St. Luke’s, conducted by Brad Lubman, film by Al + Al and narration written by Brian Greene and David Henry Hwang.

    Icarus At the Edge of Time
    Based on the Book by Brian Greene
    Music by Philip Glass
    Narrative Adapted by Brian Greene and David Henry Hwang
    Film Created and Directed by Al + Al
    © 2010 Dunvagen Music Publishers Inc.
    Icarus at the Edge of Time was commissioned and produced by the World Science Festival (New York), with the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, and Southbank Centre (London), with the Royal Society. Co-commissioned by Associazione Festival della Scienza, the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra and Glasgow’s Concert Halls. Executive Producers: Tracy Day, World Science Festival, New York; Gillian Moore, Southbank Centre, London.

    | More »
Top ^

Thursday

  • The 2012 Kavli Prizes

    Richard Besser, John Holdren, Angela Belcher, Thomas Jessell, Claire Max NYU Global Center, Grand Hall

    The prestigious Kavli Prizes recognize scientists for major advances in three research areas: astrophysics, nanoscience and neuroscience—the big, the small and the complex. The 2012 winners, sharing a cash award of $1 million in each field, will be announced via live satellite from the Norwegian Academy of Science and Letters in Oslo. Delivering opening remarks is John Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and co-chair of President Obama’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. Following the announcement of the winners, three renowned scientists—nanoscientist Angela Belcher, neuroscientist Thomas Jessell and astrophysicist Claire Max—will join ABC News’ chief health and medical editor Richard Besser for a discussion of the scientific achievements of the Kavli Laureates and provide insightful commentary on the next wave of research and opportunities within these dynamic fields.


    Watch this program

    | More »
  • Surface Tension: The Future of Water

    Eyebeam Art + Technology Center

    Rethink the most fundamental resource on Earth—water—through the lens of art, design and science at the U.S. premiere of Surface Tension: The Future of Water. This striking interactive exhibit, created by Science Gallery at Trinity College Dublin, explores water through the exceptional and unexpected: a printer uses water instead of ink to rain words, a music box manipulates air and water to create an ethereal soundscape, a global map made of sponges forms a 3-D representation of water consumption. Showcasing more than 40 different artworks, Surface Tension underscores the urgency of the looming water crisis: 1.2 billion people lack access to clean water, and increasing shortages threaten food production, public health and political stability.

    SURFACE TENSION: THE FUTURE OF WATER was created by Science Gallery at Trinity College, Dublin and is made possible through the generous support of Culture Ireland, the Cordover Family Foundation and the University of Dublin Fund.

    Surface Tension ran from May 30 through August 11th 2012 at Eyebeam in NYC.

    | More »
  • Cheers to Science! A Drinkable Feast of Beer, Biotechnology and Archaeology

    Sam Calagione, Patrick E. McGovern La Scuola Grande & La Birreria at Eataly

    Brewing beer might well be humankind’s first biotechnology, representing our first attempt to harness the power of living organisms. Dating back as early as 9000 BC, the craft galvanized the cultivation of barley and wheat, transformed hunter-gatherers into farmers and fueled the building of monumental structures, such as the pyramids, whose workers received five liters of beer per day as compensation. What did those ancient brews taste like? How were they made? Advanced scientific tools and new archaeological finds offer up tantalizing clues—and tasty results. Join biomolecular archaeologist Patrick McGovern and pioneering brewmaster Sam Calagione as they explore ancient ales from around the world and retrace their journey to Italy to reconstruct an Etruscan fermented beverage circa 800 to 700 BC. This rare brew features an exotic combination of ingredients: hazelnuts, pomegranates, grapes, wild flower honey, frankincense, barley, wheat, and even a few hops. Following the talk and tasting, head up to Eataly’s rooftop brewery, La Birreria, to sample a first-run batch of this prehistoric ale before fermentation. It’s a sensational evening of artisanal snacks, Dogfish Head Ancient Ales and fascinating science.

    | More »
  • Artist as Innovator: Visions of a Floating City

    Julie Burstein, Tomás Saraceno, Peter Jäger, Mario Livio, Christopher McKay, Mark Wigley Metropolitan Museum of Art, Bonnie J. Sacerdote Lecture Hall

    Great artists shape new realities by challenging conventional world views and pushing society to see possibility in unlikely places. That paradigm springs to life on top of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, where Argentinian-born artist Tomás Saraceno debuts his new utopian installation, Cloud Cities, a towering constellation of interconnected pods that draws its inspiration from the geometry of bubbles, the flight of balloons, the patterns of the cosmos and the intricacies of spider webs. Navigate your way through the structure’s maze of mirrors and webs before joining the artist and renowned scientists and architects for a conversation that brings the intersection of science and art to the foreground, and explores radical new habitats for 21st-century living.

    Presented in collaboration with The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

    | More »
  • Reefs As Never Before Seen: A World Premiere

    Bill Ritter, Lynette Wallworth, Anya Salih, Nancy Knowlton American Museum of Natural History

    The stunning underwater realm of fluorescent coral reefs and exotic sea creatures will overwhelm your senses, as the Hayden Planetarium’s dome is transformed by the renowned video installation artist Lynette Wallworth into an immersive view of ocean life few have ever witnessed. This unique event, presented in partnership with the American Museum of Natural History, takes audience members on a journey through the teeming community of coral reefs, an environment responsible for the health of the biosphere. Leading researchers share their insights on coral reefs prior to the world premiere of Wallworth’s film, Coral: ReKindling Venus, and set the stage for a remarkable evening of art and science. Tickets include cocktails and an optional after-hours tour of the museum’s “Bioluminescence” exhibit with Wallworth and the scientists.

    Presented in collaboration with the American Museum of Natural History.

    | More »
  • Too Close To The Sun: Stories of Flash Points

    Andy Borowitz, Tricia Rose Burt, Moran Cerf, Lisa P. Jackson, George Lombardi, Siddhartha Mukherjee The Great Hall, Cooper Union

    Presented with New York’s innovative storytelling collective, The Moth, esteemed scientists, writers and artists tell on-stage stories about their personal relationship with science. In keeping with Moth tradition, each story must be true and told within ten minutes, without notes. The result is a poignant, hilarious, and enjoyably unpredictable evening that’s sure to intrigue and surely hard to forget.

    Presented in collaboration with The Moth.

    | More »
  • How We Bounce Back: The New Science of Human Resilience

    Bill Blakemore, George Bonanno, Dennis Charney, Fran Norris, Matthieu Ricard Tishman Auditorium at The New School

    Car accidents. Suicide bombers. Earthquakes. Death of a spouse. Why do some people bounce back from traumatic events while others do not? Is there a biological profile of resiliency? Can science, with the jab of a needle or huff of an aerosol, help reduce post-stress trauma? Can, and should, we train people to be more resilient? Leading thinkers from around the world explore these and other questions about the science of human resiliency.

    See all content from How We Bounce Back

    | More »
  • The Creator: Alan Turing and the Future of Thinking Machines

    Tim McHenry, Al + Al, Yann LeCun, Janna Levin, Josh Tenenbaum Museum of the Moving Image

    Join the world premiere screening of The Creator, a beautiful and surreal short-form film by award-winning British filmmakers Al+Al, which follows sentient computers from the future on a mystical odyssey to discover their creator: legendary computer scientist Alan Turing. Decades ago, Turing famously asked, ‘Can machines think?’ and ever since, the notion of computers exceeding human intelligence has transfixed researchers and popular culture alike. Marking the centenary of Turing’s birth, The Creator will launch a wide-ranging conversation among leading computer scientists and physicists about the promise and perils of artificial intelligence, as we take a personal look at the remarkable and tragic life of this computer visionary.

    This movie contains adult themes. Some content may not be appropriate for all audiences. Viewer discretion is advised.

    | More »
  • Afterglow: Dispatches from the Birth of the Universe

    Lawrence M. Krauss, John C. Mather, Amber Miller, Lyman Page, David Spergel NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts

    Cosmology is the one field in which researchers can—literally—witness the past. The cosmic background radiation, ancient light streaming toward us since the Big Bang, provides a pristine window onto the birth and evolution of the universe. Already, the radiation has been key to confirming an early explosive expansion of space, determining the geometric shape of the universe and identifying seeds that resulted in galaxies. Now, the cosmic background radiation is poised to reveal when the first stars formed, what happened in the fraction of a second after the Big Bang, and the answers to a host of other bold questions about the cosmos. Join Nobel Laureate John Mather and other leading scientists who are leading the way.

    See all content from Afterglow
    Watch this program

    This program is part of “The Big, the Small, and the Complex,” a series made possible with support from the Kavli Prize.

    | More »
  • Madness Redefined: Creativity, Intelligence and the Dark Side of the Mind

    Cynthia McFadden, James Fallon, Kay Redfield Jamison, Susan McKeown, Elyn Saks The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College

    The notion of a “tortured genius” or “mad scientist” may be more than a romantic aberration. Research shows that bipolar disorder and schizophrenia correlate with high creativity and intelligence, raising tantalizing questions: What role does environment play in the path to mental illness? Are so-called mental defects being positively selected for in the gene pool? Where’s the line between gift and deficit? As studies mount supporting the storied link between special aptitudes and mental illnesses, science is reexamining the shifting spectrum between brilliance and madness.

    See all content from Madness Redefined
    Watch this program

    This program is part of The Big Idea Series, made possible with support from the John Templeton Foundation.

    | More »
Top ^

Friday

  • Pioneers in Science: Featuring Elaine Fuchs

    Juju Chang, Elaine Fuchs NYU Global Center, President's Colloquium Room

    Pioneers in Science is an interactive program that gives high school students from around the world rare and intimate access to Nobel Laureates, presidential advisors, and other trailblazing scientists. Presented in collaboration with the Global Nomads Group, a non-profit organization whose goal is to foster dialogue and understanding among the world’s youth, Pioneers in Science encourages students to participate and ask questions during engaging town-hall-style discussions where speakers share their personal stories, life challenges and career highlights, all with the goal of inspiring by example. This year’s program features geneticist Elaine Fuchs, an esteemed researcher who has been personally recognized by President Obama for her contributions to science.

    | More »
  • Illuminating Resilience

    Carl Zimmer, George Bonanno, Sandro Galea, Glenn Saxe, Rachel Yehuda NYU Global Center, Grand Hall

    The World Science Festival’s annual salon series offers in-depth conversations with leading scientists, extending the discussion of the Festival’s premiere public programs to graduate students, postdocs, faculty and well-informed members of the general public. This salon looks at new and controversial ways to understand the human capacity to cope with stress and rebound from traumatic events. Is resilience a combination of innate traits born of thousands of years of evolution? Is it a complex psychological process that varies across cultures and environments? Can resilience be reliably defined and objectively measured? Can it then be taught and reproduced?

    | More »
  • Pioneers in Science: Featuring Lisa P. Jackson

    Juju Chang, Lisa P. Jackson NYU Global Center, President's Colloquium Room

    Pioneers in Science is an interactive program that gives high school students from around the world rare and intimate access to Nobel Laureates, presidential advisors, and other trailblazing scientists. Presented in collaboration with the Global Nomads Group, a non-profit organization whose goal is to foster dialogue and understanding among the world’s youth, Pioneers in Science encourages students to participate and ask questions during engaging town-hall-style discussions where speakers share their personal stories, life challenges and career highlights, all with the goal of inspiring by example. This year’s program features chemical engineer Lisa P. Jackson, a renowned scientist who brings two decades of experience as a pioneering environmental regulator to the post of Administrator of the Environmental Agency.

    | More »
  • Refining Cosmology

    Lawrence M. Krauss, John E. Carlstrom, Britt Reichborn-Kjennerud, John Kovac, Suzanne Staggs NYU Global Center, Grand Hall

    The World Science Festival’s annual salon series offers in-depth conversations with leading scientists, extending the discussion of the Festival’s premiere public programs to graduate students, postdocs, faculty and well-informed members of the general public. This salon will look at how a sophisticated network of telescopes deployed in some of the most remote locations on Earth, from the South Pole to the Atacama desert, are providing ever more refined data to understand how the universe was created and how it will eventually evolve.
    This program is part of “The Big, the Small, and the Complex,” a series made possible with support from the Kavli Prize.

    | More »
  • Alan Alda’s Burning Question: What is a Flame?

    Alan Alda The Paley Center for Media

    Actor and science advocate Alan Alda invites scientists, teachers, and others who care about science communication to join in the discussion of one of the vital questions of our time: how to help society understand science better. Alan will report on intriguing—and sometimes surprising—results from the Flame Challenge, a worldwide contest that asked scientists to explain a flame in terms that would engage an 11-year-old. More than 6,000 11-year-olds judged the entries, but their responses provide lessons for scientists communicating with audiences of any age.  We will discuss innovative techniques pioneered by the Center for Communicating Science at Stony Brook University, where scientists are learning communication skills as a fundamental part of their science education.

    Watch this program
    Watch the announcement of the Flame Challenge winner at Cool Jobs

    | More »
  • A New Look at Mental Illness

    Mariette DiChristina, Bruce Cuthbert, Michael B. First, Donald Goff, Helen Blair Simpson NYU Global Center, Grand Hall

    The World Science Festival’s annual salon series offers in-depth conversations with leading scientists, extending the discussion of the Festival’s premiere public programs to graduate students, postdocs, faculty and well-informed members of the general public. This salon explores the revolution in genetics, neuroscience and other means of understanding the biological basis of mental illness that promises a paradigm shift in psychiatry—one that would marry symptoms to their biological roots, refine the classification of mental disorders, and open up the door to personalized psychiatric treatments.

    | More »
  • Surface Tension: Opening Reception

    Eyebeam Art + Technology Center

    Rethink the most fundamental resource on Earth—water—through the lens of art, science and design at the Opening Reception of the U.S. premiere of Surface Tension: The Future of Water.  With more than 40 provocative exhibits, viewers are challenged to immerse themselves in the subject of water, exploring the exceptional and unexpected from art and culture to science and technology. 

    Join artists, collaborators, and VIPs for the debut of these thought-provoking installations.

    SURFACE TENSION: THE FUTURE OF WATER was created by Science Gallery at Trinity College, Dublin and is made possible through the generous support of Culture Ireland, the Cordover Family Foundation and the University of Dublin Fund.


    Artists present:
    • Evelina Domnitch & Dmitry Gelfand - Artists, Hydrogeny
    • Di Maidstone - Artist, Hydrocordian
    • David Bowen - Artist, Telepresent Water
    • Gabriella Levine - Artists, Protei
    • Nicky Gogan - Director, The Swimmer
    • Lane Hall & Lisa Moline - Artists, Basin

    VIPs present:
    • Irish Consul General Noel Kilkenny
    • Ron and Barbara Cordover – Cordover Family Foundation
    • Culture Ireland representative
    • Michael John Gorman, Science Gallery

    | More »
  • Robot & Frank: The Future of Computerized Companions

    David Brancaccio, Maja Matarić, Dennis Hong, and others Museum of the Moving Image

    Join us for a screening of Robot & Frank, winner of the 2012 Alfred P. Sloan Foundation feature film prize at Sundance. This dramatic comedy, about a curmudgeonly old jewel thief whose robot caretaker becomes an unlikely partner-in-crime and soulmate, will inspire a follow-up discussion among pioneering roboticists, exploring the future of computerized companions and caretakers as technology profoundly alters the landscape—and very definition—of human interaction.

    A special preview screening of the soon-to-be-released, “Robot & Frank,” courtesy of Samuel Goldwyn Films and Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions.

    This program is supported by the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation as part of its Public Understanding of Science and Technology initiatives.

    Presented in collaboration with the Museum of the Moving Image.

    | More »
  • The Elusive Neutrino and the Nature of the Cosmos

    Bill Weir, Janet Conrad, Francis Halzen, Lawrence M. Krauss, John Robinson Tishman Auditorium at The New School

    The neutrino is among the cagiest of particles, a subatomic wisp so ephemeral it could pass through light years of lead with more ease than a hot knife through butter. Despite its extraordinary abundance in the universe—billions pass through your body every second—this ghostly particle is notoriously difficult to trap, inspiring some of the most sophisticated detectors in science just to study it. A closer look could change everything. The elusive neutrino holds clues to some of the most profound questions in particle physics: What happened in the briefest moments after the Big Bang? Why does the universe contain more matter than antimatter? Join leading researchers as they chase neutrinos and other elusive particles in search of nature’s fundamental order.

    This program is part of The Big Idea Series, made possible with support from the John Templeton Foundation.

    See all content from The Elusive Neutrino

    | More »
  • Quantum Biology and the Hidden Nature of Nature

    John Hockenberry, Paul Davies, Seth Lloyd, Thorsten Ritz The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College

    Can the spooky world of quantum physics explain bird navigation, photosynthesis and even our delicate sense of smell? Clues are mounting that the rules governing the subatomic realm may play an unexpectedly pivotal role in the visible world. Join leading thinkers in the emerging field of quantum biology as they explore the hidden hand of quantum physics in everyday life and discuss how these insights may one day revolutionize thinking on everything from the energy crisis to quantum computers.


    Watch this program

    | More »
  • Reawakening the Brain through Music

    Lesley Stahl, Oliver Sacks, Petr Janata, Stanley Jordan, Concetta Tomaino NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts

    A composer finds freedom from Tourette’s through music; an amnesiac remembers distant memories when he hears the Grateful Dead; a patient with Parkinson’s listens to her favorite tunes and regains the ability to walk without tremors. What is it about music that can transport us to the past, reawaken distant emotions, and even heal some neurological disorders? Join renowned neurologist and best-selling author Oliver Sacks and pioneering music therapists as they use intimate portraits of patients profoundly transformed by music to explore the neural mechanisms behind music’s healing powers, and discuss possible implications for the treatment of Alzheimer’s, aphasia and other neurological impairments.

    | More »
  • Hedy and George: Improbable Collaborators, Unconventional Innovators

    John Schaefer, Carmelo Amarena, Tyondai Braxton, Jennifer Choi, Philip Glass, Tristan Perich, Richard Rhodes, Kathleen Supové Le Poisson Rouge

    An evening of intimate conversation and musical performance as Pulitzer Prize-winning author Richard Rhodes and some of the most forward-thinking composers of our age, explore the extraordinary lives and legacies of two unconventional innovators: the legendary screen siren Hedy Lamarr and renowned avant-garde composer George Antheil. In a remarkable and unlikely union, Lamarr, known as ‘the most beautiful woman in the world,’ and Antheil, the self-described ‘bad boy of music,’ joined forces during World War II to invent a secret communication system that presaged today’s GPS, cell phone and Bluetooth technologies. Today, George Antheil is revered as a pioneer of electronic music. Some of his compositions were so far ahead of their time that the technology to bring them to life only materialized decades after his death. The conversation on innovation, science and music will be amplified by a series of performances of Antheil’s seminal scores and explorations of today’s most avant-garde electronica.

    | More »
  • Neutrinos: The Next Decade

    John Rennie, Janet Conrad, Francis Halzen, Joseph Formaggio, Lawrence M. Krauss NYU Global Center, Grand Hall

    The World Science Festival’s annual salon series offers in-depth conversations with leading scientists, extending the discussion of the Festival’s premiere public programs to graduate students, postdocs, faculty and well-informed members of the general public. In this salon, drill deeper into the insights neutrino research offers for the next phase of particle physics and the ongoing quest to determine the origins of the universe. What are the emerging techniques for hunting the elusive neutrino and how will these experiments lead to neutrino physics breakthroughs in the decade ahead?

    | More »
Top ^

Saturday

  • Science-on-Site

    Brooklyn Bridge Park

    Science comes to life in Brooklyn Bridge Park! Join adventurous researchers for a day of family-friendly exploration in one of the city’s most dynamic parks. Discover incredible marine life through an ancient fishing technique, join a leading botanist for a park-wide safari, learn the science secrets of the iconic Brooklyn Bridge, and more. Capping it all off is an unforgettable evening of stargazing. Adventure awaits!

    | More »
  • Science Sets Sail Aboard the Tall Ship Clearwater

    Brooklyn Bridge Park

    The World Science Festival joins Clearwater educators in raising the sails on the sloop Clearwater, a replica of the 18th-century Dutch tall ships that once traveled the region delivering mail and supplies. Set your course using charts and compasses, and explore the waters of New York City as a citizen scientist. Identify an amazing variety of fish and invertebrates; test for pollution levels; and learn about the pressing environmental issues impacting this historic waterway. All aboard!

    Participants:

    Jeffrey Levinton, Department of Ecology and Evolution, Stony Brook University

    | More »
  • Innovation Square

    Apoorv Agarwal, Babycastles, Boaz Almog, Andrew Blum, Howie Choset, Dickson Despommier, Peter Edwards, Heinrich Frontzek, Robert J. Full, Eitan Grinspun, Dennis Hong, Don Ingber, Katherine Isbister, Alan Jacobsen, Ellen Jorgensen, Oliver Medvedik, Vinod Menon, Jin Montclare, David Ng, Tristan Perich, Syed Salahuddin, Caitlin Trainor, Philip White, and others Polytechnic Institute of NYU, MetroTech Plaza

    Innovation Square
    A technophile’s adventureland

    The World Science Festival transforms a picturesque quad in downtown Brooklyn into a staging ground for future-shaping innovations springing to life in labs and workshops around the world. Watch the first public demonstration of quantum levitation; get lost in the robot petting zoo; play with the world’s lightest material. It’s an unforgettable afternoon of amazing demos, challenges, and interactive fun, suitable for tech enthusiasts of all ages.

    | More »
  • Meet the Authors: Conversations with Best-Selling Science Writers

    Carl Zimmer, Peter Pringle, Lawrence M. Krauss, Edward O. Wilson NYU Kimmel Center, Commuter Lounge

    Spend a thought-provoking afternoon with four leading science authors as they share insights from their latest books. The conversations will move from the mind-bending physics of nothing to the surprising trend of science-themed tattoos, from the dark secrets of scientific research to the evolutionary mystery of the human condition. Bring your questions, your books, and your tattoos!


    Carl Zimmer
    1:00 PM
    Science Ink: Tattoos of the Science Obsessed (Sterling, 2011)

    In his fascinating investigation of scientists with tattoos, celebrated science writer Carl Zimmer discovers that tattoo artists now receive more requests for winding double-DNA strands than they do for “Mom.” Zimmer, an accidental curator of scholarly science ink, shares his experience reporting on hundreds of brainy tattoos—equations, chemical elements, orbits, molecular structures, and all manner of flora and fauna. Have a science tattoo? Zimmer will give you expert tips on how to photograph it, enhance it or hide it.


    Peter Pringle
    3:00 PM
    Experiment Eleven: Dark Secrets Behind the Discovery of a Wonder Drug (Walker and Company, 2012)

    Acclaimed investigative journalist and bestselling author Peter Pringle unravels the dark secrets behind the discovery of one of the most important drugs of the last century—streptomycin, the first antibiotic to successfully treat tuberculosis. Pringle’s spellbinding account of the development of this life-altering wonder drug exposes the role of power, hubris and deceit in the process of medical research. Pringle invites audience members to join him in a spirited debate over the definition of scientific discovery—how do you define it? Who gets the credit? 


    Lawrence Krauss
    5:30 PM
    A Universe From Nothing: Why There is Something Rather than Nothing (Free Press, 2012)

    In his latest non-fiction science thriller, cosmologist Lawrence Krauss tackles two of the biggest scientific and philosophical questions of our time: How could the universe arise from nothing? And what is nothing, anyway? Join Krauss as he takes us on a journey to the beginning of time, to the beginning of nothing at all, and uses the latest findings in physics to turn these time-worn questions on their head.


    E.O. Wilson: A special book signing
    8:00 PM
    The Social Conquest of Earth (Liveright, 2012)

    In his highly anticipated new book, The Social Conquest of Earth, two-time Pulitzer Prize winning biologist E.O. Wilson draws on a lifetime of pioneering research to explain in enthralling, insightful prose the baffling origin of the human condition. How did humans evolve from simple creature to the most dominant species on Earth? What gives cooperative animals like ants, bees and humans an evolutionary advantage? This special book signing offers a rare opportunity to meet one of most influential scientists of our time.

    | More »
  • On the Shoulders of Giants: A special address by Edward O. Wilson

    Edward O. Wilson NYU Global Center, Grand Hall

    Every generation benefits from the insights and discoveries of the generations who came before. “If I have seen a little further it is by standing on the shoulders of giants,” wrote Isaac Newton. In a special series, the World Science Festival invites audiences to stand on the shoulders of modern-day giants. The second annual address in this series will be given by esteemed evolutionary biologist and two-time Pulitzer Prize winner Edward O. Wilson, who will speak about radical advances in the study of human social behavior and evolutionary biology.

    | More »
  • Internet Everywhere: The Future of History’s Most Disruptive Technology

    John Donvan, Vinton Cerf, Neil Gershenfeld, Elizabeth Stark, Alex Wright NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts

    Disruptive technologies uproot culture, can precipitate wars and even topple empires. By this measure, human history has seen nothing like the Internet. Pioneers of the digital revolution examine the Internet’s brief but explosive history and reveal nascent projects that will shortly reinvent how we interact with technology—and each other. From social upheaval and ever-shifting privacy standards to self-driving cars and networked groceries, this eye-opening program provides a stunning glimpse of what’s around the corner.

    See all content from Internet Everywhere
    Watch this program

    | More »
  • Cool Jobs

    Alan Alda, Baba Brinkman, Cynthia Bir, Jarod Miller, Wendy Suzuki, Adam Wilson The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College

    The Festival’s ever-popular Cool Jobs is back with a jaw-dropping show that brings you face-to-face with amazing scientists with amazing jobs. Imagine having an office that’s a zoo and co-workers that are lemurs and porcupines. How about getting paid to build machines that can read people’s thoughts. Or imagine your desk was a basketball court and your clients were superstars trying to improve their game through biomechanics? Well, you don’t have to just imagine. Hear from scientists who have these jobs—find out what they do, how they do it, and how they got the coolest and weirdest gigs on the planet. The program begins with Alan Alda hosting The Flame Challenge Prize Announcement.  The contest, conceived by Alda and Stony Brook University’s Center for Communicating Science, called on scientists worldwide to give their best explanation of how a flame works—but in a way that makes sense to a kid. The winner was chosen by hundreds of 11-year olds around the country.

    Watch this program

    | More »
  • Pandemic Fix: Seeking Universal Vaccines

    Richard Besser, Laurie Garrett, Gary Nabel, Michael Osterholm, Harold Varmus New-York Historical Society, Smith Auditorium

    Imagine beating every strain of flu with a single jab. Wiping out your risk of some lethal cancers, HIV, and malaria during a routine doctor’s visit. That’s the promise of next-generation vaccines, and researchers are closing in on the basic science needed to bring them to reality. Join epidemiologists, virologists, and public-health experts as they share insights on the new wave of vaccine research, and the race to eliminate pandemic threats. Setting the stage for the discussion is a screening of Contagion, Steven Soderbergh’s chilling thriller about a deadly flu outbreak and the global race to contain it.

    Screening at 2:00 PM - 4:00 PM and Program at 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM

    Presented in collaboration with the New-York Historical Society, where “Get Vaccinated” is on display May 15 through September 2.

    | More »
  • Surface Tension: Solving Our Water Woes

    Femi Oke, Ralph Borland, Carey E. Hidaka, Sebastien Gouin, Stephanie Butler Velegol Eyebeam Art + Technology Center

    The U.S. premiere of Surface Tension: The Future of Water challenges viewers to rethink the most fundamental resource on Earth—water—through the lens of art, science and design. Join leading scientists as they build upon the provocative ideas of this striking interactive exhibit and share insights on solving the urgent issue of water scarcity. How do we provide clean water to the 780 million people worldwide living without it? How do we stretch our limited water resources? What are the innovative technologies poised to change the landscape of water?

    SURFACE TENSION: THE FUTURE OF WATER was created by Science Gallery at Trinity College, Dublin and is made possible through the generous support of Culture Ireland, the Cordover Family Foundation and the University of Dublin Fund.

    | More »
  • Einstein, Time, and the Coldest Stuff in the Universe

    William Phillips The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College

    Nobel prize-winning physicist William Phillips returns to the World Science Festival for another spellbinding journey to the lowest temperatures ever recorded. What’s an atomic clock and why does it keep better time when cold? What’s the relationship between speed, temperature and relativity? Through crackling, fizzing, popping experimentation, see what happens when ordinary objects plunge to the edge of absolute zero.

    | More »
  • Exoplanets: The Search for New Worlds

    Dan Harris, Natalie Batalha, Matt Mountain, Sara Seager Tishman Auditorium at The New School

    A few decades ago, we knew of no other planets beyond those in our solar system. Today, astronomers have confirmed over 700 planets circling other suns and believe billions more lay undiscovered. These new worlds have smashed conventional assumptions, revealing planets orbiting multiple stars, planets that don’t orbit stars at all, and at least one as airy as Styrofoam. The incredible boom in planetary diversity raises tantalizing prospects for an Earth analog that could harbor life—as we know it, and as we never imagined it.

    This program is part of The Big Idea Series, made possible with support from the John Templeton Foundation.

    Watch the Full Program

    | More »
  • Science Sets Sail Aboard the Tall Ship Clearwater

    Brooklyn Bridge Park

    The World Science Festival joins Clearwater educators in raising the sails on the sloop Clearwater, a replica of the 18th-century Dutch tall ships that once traveled the region delivering mail and supplies. Set your course using charts and compasses, and explore the waters of New York City as a citizen scientist. Identify an amazing variety of fish and invertebrates; test for pollution levels; and learn about the pressing environmental issues impacting this historic waterway. All aboard!

    Participants:

    Jeffrey Levinton, Department of Ecology and Evolution, Stony Brook University

    | More »
  • Why We Prevailed: Evolution and the Battle for Dominance

    John Hockenberry, Alison Brooks, Ed Green, Chris Stringer, Edward O. Wilson Tishman Auditorium at The New School

    We once shared the planet with Neanderthals and other human species. Some of our relatives may have had tools, language and culture.  Why did we thrive while they perished? Join evolutionary biologists, geneticists and anthropologists as they share profound insights about the origin of man and retrace our singular journey from fledgling prototype to the most dominant species on Earth.

    This program is part of The Big Idea Series, made possible with support from the John Templeton Foundation.
    See all content from Why We Prevailed
    Watch this program

    | More »
  • Spotlight: Innovation from Unexpected Places

    Jason Silva, Cynthia Bir, Don Ingber, Alan Jacobsen, Peter Jäger, Maja Matarić Galapagos Art Space

    Strip away the trimmings of a traditional science presentation, add cocktails and an intimate lounge setting, and you have WSF Spotlight. This year’s series provides an unobstructed glimpse into the minds of some of the most inventive thinkers. Experiments gone wrong. Happy accidents. Ah-ha moments. Every innovation or scientific breakthrough has a story. We’ll hear a few of them from some of our favorite innovators: from discovering the world’s largest spider to inventing the world’s lightest substance, and from looking to art for insights into cellular processes to building social robots of the future. Join us as we trace some of the unlikely, entertaining and enlightening paths to discovery.


    This program was an extension of Innovation Square, a free outdoor tech fest featuring amazing demos, performances and interactive fun at NYU Polytechnic Institute, MetroTech Plaza.

    | More »
  • Why We Tell Stories: The Science of Narrative

    Jay Allison, Paul Bloom, Jeffrey Eugenides, Jonathan Gottschall, Joyce Carol Oates, Keith Oatley, The Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre The Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College

    “We tell ourselves stories in order to live,” says American author Joan Didion. Stories have existed in all forms—parables, poems, tall tales, myths, novels, plays, songs—across almost all cultures and throughout human history. But is storytelling essential to survival? Is it a driver of evolution or a byproduct? What is the primal urge that drove our distant ancestors to crawl into a dark cave and paint portraits on rocky walls? Join a spirited discussion of how science has begun to explain the uniquely human gift of narrative, looking to the brain for insight on how neurons alight when we hear a tale, to developmental psychology for clues about the role of storytelling in learning, and to storytellers themselves for explanations that ultimately inform a greater understanding of who we are as a species.

    See all content from Why We Tell Stories
    Watch this program

    | More »
  • Spooky Action: The Drama of Quantum Mechanics

    Brian Greene, Elizabeth Stahlmann, Michael Roush, Raja Burrows NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts

    In 1935, Albert Einstein and two colleagues published a landmark paper revealing that quantum mechanics allows widely separated objects to influence one another, even though nothing travels between them. Einstein called it spooky and rejected the idea, arguing instead that it exposed a major deficiency in the quantum theory. But, decades later, experiments proved the unsettling concept correct, upending conventional notions of reality. Join Brian Greene on a journey that brings this insight and the remarkable history of reality-bending quantum mechanics vividly to life.

    This program is part of The Big Idea Series, made possible with support from the John Templeton Foundation.

    | More »
  • From the City to the Stars

    Mario Livio, Lawrence M. Krauss, Kelle Cruz Brooklyn Bridge Park

    Join professional and amateur astronomers for a free evening of urban stargazing. An outdoor party beneath the Brooklyn Bridge and the twinkling canvas of the night sky, it will be a night to explore and discover the vast wonders of the cosmos. Bring your telescope if you have one, or use one of the dozens we’ll have on hand.
    The evening kicks off with a conversation with four world-class astronomers who share their unique perspectives on the cosmos and explain the upcoming Transit of Venus, a rare astronomical event set for June 5 when Venus passes directly between the Earth and the Sun.
    Afterward, mingle with the astronomers as we point the telescopes skyward and enjoy celestial tunes by Brooklyn DJ Patrick Billard.

    Schedule:
    Star chats: Conversations with astronomers - 8:00 – 10:00 PM
    Turn the telescopes skyward - 9:00 – 11:00 PM

    Participants and activities to be announced.

    | More »
Top ^

Sunday

Top ^