Our species is facing an unprecedented set of challenges, including global climate change, exponential population growth, and new diseases. Examining these and other challenges using the lens of evolution is necessary to understand why we confront them. But just as importantly, as we search for solutions, the evolutionary perspectives can help guide us in building a better, safer and more survivable future.
Survival brings together seven world-renowned speakers and researchers for an inspiring evening of short talks moderated by Emmy Award-winning journalist Miles O’Brien. Join Ruth DeFries, Daniel Lieberman, Stuart Pimm, Steven Pinker, Pardis Sabeti, Daniel Schrag and Richard Wrangham as we explore our past, present, and future.
(Photo By Tkgd2007 Own work CC BY-SA 3.0 http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.or GFDL (http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/fdl.html, via Wikimedia Commons)
BIO: Ruth DeFries
Ruth DeFries is a professor of ecology and sustainable development at Columbia University in New York. She uses satellite imagery and field surveys to examine how humanity’s demands for food and other resources are affecting climate, biodiversity and other ecosystem services. She is committed to linking science with policy and public communication, most recently through her book "The Big Ratchet: How Humanity Thrives in the Face of Natural Crisis."
BIO: Daniel E. Lieberman
Daniel E. Lieberman received a PhD in 1993 at Harvard University where he is now professor of anthropology.
BIO: Stuart Pimm
Stuart Pimm is the Doris Duke Chair of Conservation at Duke University. He is a world leader in the study of present day extinctions and what can be done to prevent them. He is the author of over 300 scientific papers and four books. Stuart Pimm directs SavingSpecies, a 501c3 non-profit that uses funds for carbon emissions offsets to fund local conservation groups restoring degraded lands in areas of exceptional tropical biodiversity.
BIO: Steven Pinker
Steven Pinker is Harvard College Professor and Johnstone Family Professor of Psychology at Harvard University. Pinker is one of the world's leading authorities on language and the mind, and the the author of seven books, including The Language Instinct, How the Mind Works, Words and Rules, The Blank Slate, and The Stuff of Thought.
BIO: Dr. Pardis Sabeti
Dr. Pardis Sabeti is an associate professor at the Center for Systems Biology and Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University and the Department of Immunology and Infectious Disease at the Harvard School of Public Health, an Institute Member of the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT, and a Howard Hughes Investigator. Dr. Sabeti is a computational geneticist with expertise developing algorithms to detect genetic signatures of adaptation in humans and the microbial organisms that infect humans.
BIO: Daniel Schrag
Daniel Schrag is the Director of Harvard's Center for the Environment and is a professor of Earth and planetary sciences at Harvard University. Schrag, who studies climate and climate change over the broadest range of Earth's history, has examined changes in ocean circulation over the last several decades, with particular attention to El Nino and the tropical Pacific.
He also has worked on theories for Pleistocene ice-age cycles including a better determination of ocean temperatures during the Last Glacial Maximum, 20,000 years ago. Currently he is working with economists and engineers on technological approaches to mitigating future climate change. Schrag received a PhD in geology from the University of California at Berkeley.
BIO: Richard Wrangham
Richard Wrangham is Ruth B. Moore Professor of Biological Anthropology at Harvard University. He has conducted extensive research on primate ecology, nutrition, and social behavior. He founded the Kibale Chimpanzee Project in 1987. He co-founded the Kasiisi Project in 1997 and serves as a patron of the Great Apes Survival Partnership (GRASP).