The World Science Festival, which takes place from Tuesday, May 30 through Sunday, June 4, in New York City, celebrates all things science and exploration. The festival is produced by the nonprofit Science Festival Foundation, whose mission is "to cultivate a general public informed by science, inspired by its wonder, convinced of its value, and prepared to engage with its implications for the future."
Below is a schedule of World Science Festival events with live-stream video, so you can watch the talks live.
From the World Science Festival:
Computational Creativity: AI and the Art of Ingenuity
Moderated by: John Schaefer Featuring: Sougwen Chung, Jesse Engel, Peter Ulric Tse, Lav Varshney Time: Wednesday, May 31, 2017, 8:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Venue: NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts
Program Description: Today, there are robots that make art, move like dancers, tell stories, and even help human chefs devise unique recipes. But is there ingenuity in silico? Can computers be creative? A rare treat for the senses, this thought-provoking event brings together artists and computer scientists who are creating original works with the help of artificially intelligent machines. Joined by leading experts in psychology and neuroscience, they’ll explore the roots of creativity in humans and computers, what artificial creativity reveals about human imagination, and the future of hybrid systems that build on the capabilities of both.
The Evolution of Evolution: Are We the Masters of Our Fate?
Moderated by: John Hockenberry Featuring: Hank Greely, Sam Sternberg, Ian Tattersall, Sarah Tishkoff Time: Thursday, June 1, 2017, 8:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Venue: NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts
Program Description: It's a profound question facing modern humans: Are we still subject to natural selection? After hundreds of years of scientific progress, many of the pressures that control evolution — predators and disease — are decreasing. At the same time, technology capable of engineering the genome is in our hands. Are we undergoing a new form of evolution in which artificial changes are faster and more radical than those produced by the natural world? Should we control our own genetic material? Where will these changes lead us? Renowned geneticists, paleoanthropologists and biologists consider our genetic future as evolution evolves.
Pioneers in Science: Jane Lubchenco
Moderated by: Danielle Dana Featuring: Jane Lubchenco Time: Friday, June 2, 2017, 9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. Venue: Join online with Zoom
Program Description: The World Science Festival's Pioneers in Science program gives high school students from around the globe rare and intimate access to some of the world’s most renowned scientists in a town hall style discussion. Join us to meet marine ecologist, Professor Jane Lubchenco, U.S. Science Envoy for the Oceans and former Under Secretary of Commerce for Oceans and Atmosphere and former Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
Pioneers in Science: Aprille J. Ericsson
Moderated by: Danielle Dana Featuring: Aprille J. Ericsson Time: Friday, June 2, 2017, 11:45 a.m. - 12:45 p.m. Venue: Join online with Zoom
Program Description: The World Science Festival's Pioneers in Science program gives high school students from around the globe rare and intimate access to some of the world's most renowned scientists in a town hall style discussion. Join us to meet NASA aerospace engineer, Aprille J. Ericsson, a pioneer in the development of crucial instruments for the James Webb Space Telescope, ICESat, and other missions that monitor the earth and help discover new planets and search for our origins.
Forever Young: The Promise of Human Regeneration
Moderated by: Emily Senay Participants: Dany Spencer Adams, Stephen Badylak, Jonathan Butcher, Doris Taylor
Time: Thursday, June 1, 2017, 8:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Venue: Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College
Program Description: Synthetic blood mass-produced to meet supply shortages. Livers and kidneys "bioprinted" on demand. Missing fingers and toes re-grown with a jolt of bioelectricity. Regenerative medicine promises to do more than just treat disease, injuries, or congenital conditions. It holds the potential to rejuvenate, heal, or completely replace damaged tissue and organs. If successful, regenerative medicine will have immense impact on how we care for the injured, sick, and aging — and how we think about death. This program will explore mind-boggling medical advances as well as the societal and economic implications of a future in which everybody may truly be forever young.
Quantum Reality: Space, Time, and Entanglement
Moderated by: Brian Greene Featuring: Mark Van Raamsdonk, Gerard ’t Hooft, David Wallace, K. Birgitta Whaley Time: Friday, June 2, 2017, 8:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Venue: NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts
Program Description: Ninety years after the historic double-slit experiment, the quantum revolution shows no sign of slowing. Join a vibrant conversation with renowned leaders in theoretical physics, quantum computation and philosophical foundations, focused on how quantum physics continues to impact understanding on issues profound and practical, from the edge of black holes and the fibers of spacetime to teleportation and the future of computers.
The Social Synapse: Neuroscience and the Roots of Human Connections
Moderated by: John Donvan Featuring: Louise Barrett, Agustín Fuentes, Kevin Laland, Kevin Ochsner, Dietrich Stout Time: Friday, June 2, 2017, 8:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Venue: Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College
Program Description: We humans work together on enormous scales, build complex tools as large as cities, and create social networks that span the globe. What is the key to this innately social profile? How did it evolve? This program will examine the development of the human brain — and the brains of other animals — asking how neurons and synapses orchestrate communal behavior and guide group interactions, demonstrating how our social nature is key to our humanity.
Pondering the Imponderables: The Biggest Questions of Cosmology
Moderated by: Jim Holt Participants: David Z. Albert, George F. R. Ellis, Alan Guth, Veronika Hubeny, Andrei Linde, Barry Loewer Time: Saturday, June 3, 2017, 2:00 p.m. - 3:30 p.m. Venue: Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College
Program Description: Physicists and cosmologists are closing in on how the universe operates at its very core. But even with powerful telescopes and particle accelerators pushed to their limits, experimenters struggle to keep up as theoreticians march forward, leaving grand theories untested. Is our universe unique or one of many? Was there a before the Big Bang? Why is there something rather than nothing? Some argue that if these deep questions can't be answered empirically, they're not relevant to science. Are they right? Join world-leading cosmologists, philosophers and physicists as they tackle the profound questions of existence.
Flame Challenge: What is Energy?
Moderated by: Alan Alda Participants: Eddie Goldstein, Herman Pontzer, Lynn Trahey Time: Saturday, June 3, 2017, 4:00 p.m. - 5:30 p.m. Venue: NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts
Program Description: Alan Alda has issued this year's challenge to the world's top scientists: What is energy? In an action-packed hour of interactive demonstrations, Alan and a team of experts invite the audience to explore how our bodies use energy, the impact of natural resources, and how we're going to power the world in the future. The program also highlights the winners of the 2017 Flame Challenge, in which video and written explanations of energy were judged for clarity's sake…by 20,000 eleven year-olds.
Much Ado About Nearly Nothing: Nanotech and the Future of Energy
Moderated by: Walter Isaacson Participants: Sanjoy Banerjee, Yury Gogotsi, Paul Weiss Time: Saturday, June 3, 2017, 8:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Venue: Gerald W. Lynch Theater at John Jay College
Program Description: The biggest challenge of our time, meeting the energy demands of an exploding population on a warming planet, may well be met by manipulating matter on the tiniest of scales — revolutionizing how we power the planet. Join world-class nanoscientists and environmental leaders to explore how the newfound capacity to harness molecules and atoms is accelerating spectacular inventions — including light-weight "wonder materials," vital energy-storage technologies, and new sources of renewable energy — which promise to redefine the very future of energy.
Science in a Polarized World: A Global Town Hall Event
Moderated by: John Donvan Participants: France Córdova, Brian Greene, Dan Kahan, Paul Nurse Time: Saturday, June 3, 2017, 8:00 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. Venue: NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts
Program Description: Our age is marked by the proliferation of information, and yet we can't agree. Science is supposed to be neutral, and yet it has generated some of the deepest societal divides. Why? Our response to scientific information depends on psychology, emotion, peer pressure, politics, and cultural influences. How can we navigate these differences and implement smart policy in a contentious society? Join a vibrant and important discussion examining the interface between the scientific process and the sometimes unscientific public, as we hurtle headlong into an uncertain future.
Moderated by: "Science Bob" Pflugfelder Participants: Valerie Camille Jones, Tom McFadden, Anoopa Singh, Joshua Winter, Yenmin Young Time: Sunday, June 4, 2017, 1:30 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Venue: NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts
Program Description: The World Science Festival’s highly celebrated program, Cool Jobs, is back with an astounding line-up of the coolest science teachers around. Can you break a cinder block on your chest? Dance your way into learning about fossils? Play catch with a robot? These are all things that these people do every day…at work. And all because they know how to make science the most exciting thing around. Come experience their passion during an interactive performance you will not want to miss.
Cartographers of the Brain: Mapping the Connectome
Moderated by: John Hockenberry Participants: Deanna Barch, Jeff Lichtman, Nim Tottenham, David Van Essen Time: Sunday, June 4, 2017, 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m. Venue: NYU Skirball Center for the Performing Arts
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Program Description: Imagine navigating the globe with a map that only sketched out the continents. That's pretty much how neuroscientists have been operating for decades. But one of the most ambitious programs in all of neuroscience, the Human Connectome Project, has just yielded a "network map" that is shedding light on the intricate connectivity in the brain. Join leading neuroscientists and psychologists as they explore how the Connectome promises to revolutionize treatments for psychiatric and neurological disorders while also answering profound questions regarding the electrochemical roots of memory and behavior, the link between experience and perception, and perhaps the very nature of consciousness itself.
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