Events

Feb
23

6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
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Campbell Grey An Earthquake That Shook the World: Seismicity and Societal Change in the Fourth Century C.E.Penn Lightbulb Cafe World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut Street

Early in the reign of the brothers Valentinian and Valens, a massive earthquake shook the eastern Mediterranean. The July 21, 365 C.E., quake had an estimated magnitude between 8.0 and 8.5 on the Richter scale. Archaeological evidence has shown that destruction of buildings and temples spread from Crete to other parts of the Mediterranean. The earthquake is frequently connected to a tsunami that reached as far as Croatia, northwestern Greece, Libya, and Egypt. Grey will discuss the considerable literary, historical, and archaeoseismological challenges that attend the project of reconstructing this earthquake and tsunami.

Expert faculty from the University of Pennsylvania shed light on their research at the Penn Science Café. It's an evening of engaging, stimulating conversation, with a Q&A session following each talk.

Presented by Penn Arts and Sciences in partnership with the Office of University Communications, Penn Café events are free and open to the public, but RSVPs are encouraged. For more information or directions, contact Gina Bryan at 215-898-8721 or email at bryangm@upenn.edu.

Menu items are available for purchase. Happy Hour pricing from 4–6 p.m.



Mar
1

6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
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Michael Weisberg Public (Mis)understanding of EvolutionPenn Science Cafe World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut Street

Ten years have passed since the Kitzmiller v. Dover trial, one of the most prominent public forays into evolution in recent memory. But in the decade since, what has changed about the perception of this topic? Michael Weisberg, an expert on scientific methods and evolutionary biology, discusses what we currently know about evolution, why people are still confused about it, what role religion and background play in their perceptions, and what he learned on a recent research trip to the Galapagos to document evolution in action. He’ll share photos and video from the Galapagos trip and a preview of the short documentary series he and his colleagues are creating.

Expert faculty from the University of Pennsylvania shed light on their research at the Penn Science Café. It's an evening of engaging, stimulating conversation, with a Q&A session following each talk.

Presented by Penn Arts and Sciences in partnership with the Office of University Communications, Penn Café events are free and open to the public, but RSVPs are encouraged. For more information or directions, contact Gina Bryan at 215-898-8721 or email at bryangm@upenn.edu.

Menu items are available for purchase. Happy Hour pricing from 4–6 p.m.



Mar
15

6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
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Brenda Casper Studying Climate Change in a Land of Nomads: How Species Will Respond to New Conditions in the Mongolian SteppePenn Science Cafe World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut Street

Industrialized nations bear the biggest responsibility in contributing to anthropogenic climate change, but even the most remote areas of the globe bear the consequences. Brenda Casper and her students have spent years studying how future climate change will impact northern Mongolia, a semi-arid steppe where nomadic herders have practiced their livelihoods in much the same way for thousands of years. In this talk, she will explain what their work is revealing about how plants and soil bacterial communities will respond to future warming and land-use change and what that will mean for the region.

Expert faculty from the University of Pennsylvania shed light on their research at the Penn Science Café. It's an evening of engaging, stimulating conversation, with a Q&A session following each talk.

Presented by Penn Arts and Sciences in partnership with the Office of University Communications, Penn Café events are free and open to the public, but RSVPs are encouraged. For more information or directions, contact Gina Bryan at 215-898-8721 or email at bryangm@upenn.edu.

Menu items are available for purchase. Happy Hour pricing from 4–6 p.m.



Mar
21

6:30 pm
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Anemona Hartocollis Lessons from the Great Syrian Migration Penn Museum, Widener Lecture Room, 3260 south Street

GLOBAL DISTINGUISHED LECTURE

New York Times journalist Anemona Hartocollis has been chosen as the National Resource Center's Global Distinguished Lecture for 2016. She will discuss her experience following a group of migrants and refugees from the Greek Island of Kos to Denmark. She will explore the struggles, hopes, and desires of people she met along the way and ponder the unknown outcomes of this mass exodus from the Middle East and North Africa.

Hartocollis was born in Lausanne, Switzerland, and grew up in Topeka, Kansas. She received her bachelor's degree from Harvard University. Hartocollis has won awards from the Newswomen's Club of New York Front Page Award, the New York State AP Writing Contest, the Society of Silurians, and the Deadline Club of New York Award, among others. Before coming to work as a journalist for the Times, Hartocollis was a reporter and feature writer for the Daily News in New York, Newsday, The Philadelphia Inquirer, and the Detroit News. She is the author of Seven Days of Possibilities: One Teacher, 24 Kids, and the Music That Changed Their Lives Forever.



Apr
5

6:00 pm - 7:00 pm
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Michael Horowitz Why Leaders FightPenn Lightbulb Cafe World Cafe Live, 3025 Walnut Street

The co-author of Why Leaders Fight, Horowitz will discuss how world leaders engage in different types of military decision-making depending on their personal experiences in life. Compiling the biographies of nearly 2,500 dictators, presidents, kings, heads of state, and prime ministers from around the world since the 1800s, Why Leaders Fight uses the largest set of data on leader backgrounds to create a scale for risk-aversion and propensity for violence. The researchers used this scale to see if it could predict the leaders’ behavior when it comes to military aggression, and it worked.

Presented by Penn Arts and Sciences in partnership with the Office of University Communications, Penn Café events are free and open to the public, but RSVPs are encouraged. For more information or directions, contact Gina Bryan at 215-898-8721 or email bryangm@upenn.edu

Menu items are available for purchase. Happy Hour pricing from 4–6 p.m.



May
14

9:30 am - 3:00 pm
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Alumni Weekend 2016

9:30–10:30 a.m.
Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District, Ten Years Later: The Evolution of Public Understanding of Science
Silverman Hall, Room 245A–Bernard Segal Moot Court Room, 3501 Sansom St.

Ten years ago, Kitzmiller v. Dover Area School District set the stage for a national debate on the constitutionality of teaching intelligent design (ID) as an alternative to evolution. Before the trial, Michael Weisberg, professor and department chair of philosophy, and Paul Sniegowski, professor of biology, co-authored a letter on behalf of their departments in support of the teachers who argued against the inclusion of ID. Now Weisberg, Eric Rothschild, L’93, and other Penn experts look back at the case and its aftermath, the current state of public acceptance and understanding of science, and what we can do to communicate better. Sponsored by Penn Arts and Sciences, Penn Law, and Penn Alumni Education.

11–12 p.m.
60-Second Slam!
Fisher-Bennett Hall, Room 419 - Rose Recital Hall
3340 Walnut Street

Join us for breakfast during an hour-long roundup of our famous 60-Second Lectures. Stephen A. Levin Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, Robert A. Fox Leadership Professor, and Professor of Mathematics Dennis DeTurck will moderate this event. The live lectures, given by Penn Arts and Sciences’ foremost faculty and students, prove that a world of knowledge can be condensed into just 60 seconds. Vote for your favorite lecture and see who walks away with the grand prize. 

12:30–3:30 p.m.
Penn Arts and Sciences Tent on College Green

Be sure to stop by the Penn Arts and Sciences tent for an opportunity to reconnect with other College alumni, pick up some unique Penn swag, pose in the photo booth, share your Penn story to be featured on Penn Back Then, find out about opportunities to get involved, learn about new alumni programming, and much more. Follow Penn Arts and Sciences on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook @PennSAS. Share your photos, videos, and posts with #PennStartsHere and #PennAW

1–3 p.m.
Penn Back Then
Penn Arts and Sciences tent and around campus

Alumni from all generations are invited to contribute notable Penn anecdotes and remembrances to Penn Back Then. Look for roving Penn Back Then recorders and tell them your best story for this web-based audio scrapbook. For past recordings, visit: https://www.sas.upenn.edu/pennbackthen/