SPI Public Discussion Series

Building on the “Global Challenges” curriculum, and teaming with the Smithsonian and AAAS, SPI presents interactive public conversations on the role science plays in critical national issues. No powerpoint. No notes. Just candid conversations with leading scientists, policy experts, and politicians, hosted by award-winning NPR reporters.

Past guests at these public events have included: Lori Ryerkerk, General Manager ExxonMobil Energy; Rajeev Venkayya, Special Assistant to President Bush and Senior Director for Biodefense; Representative Edward Markey, Chair of the Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming; Ambassador Linton Brooks, former Administrator of the National Nuclear Security Administration; and Joseph Cirincione, Director for Nuclear Policy at the Center for American Progress.

2011 Discussion Topics

“Cyber Attack: Crime, Terrorism, or National Security?”

Host: David Kestenbaum
Experts: Stewart Baker, author & former Assistant Secretary of Policy, U.S. Department of Homeland Security; John Steinbruner, Professor of Public Policy at the University of Maryland & Director of the Center for International and Security Studies at Maryland (CISSM).

“Fukushima: Lessons Learned”

Host: Richard Harris
Experts: Gregory Jaczko, Chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission

“Infectious Disease: Challenges to Eradication”

Host: Richard Harris

“Nanotechnology in the 2010s: The Teen Years”

Host: David Kestenbaum
Experts: Pedro Alvarez, George R. Brown Professor of Engineering & Chair of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Rice University; Omid Farokhzad, Associate Professor, Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School; Debra Kaiser, Supervisory Materials Research Engineer & Division Chief – Ceramics, National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST)

2010 Discussion Topics

“Meeting Global Energy Demand”

Host: Richard Harris
Experts: Steve Koonin, Undersecretary for Science, US Department of Energy; David Goldston, Natural Resources Defense Council; and Michael Parker, ExxonMobil

“Enhancing Nuclear Security”

Host: David Kestenbaum
Experts: Gary Samore, Special Assistant to the President and White House Coordinator for Arms Control and Weapons of Mass Destruction, Proliferation, and Terrorism, Eric Loewen, GE-Hitachi; and Larry Satkowiak, Oak Ridge National Laboratory

“BPA: The Cautionary Principle”

Host: Jon Hamilton
Experts: Sarah Vogel, Johnson Family Foundation; and Christopher Borgert, University of Florida, Gainesville

“Climate and Energy Policy in the 112th Congress”

Host: Richard Harris
Experts: Jon Krosnick; Stanford University; Robert Simon, Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources; and David Conover, Bipartisan Policy Center

2009 Discussion Topics

“Acid Bath: The Impact of Increased Carbon on the Oceans”

Host: Richard Harris
Experts: Dr. Ken Caldeira, Senior Scientist, Department of Global Ecology, Carnegie Institution for Science and Dr. Steve Murawski, Director of Scientific Programs and Chief Science Advisor

“A Thirst for Power: Connecting Energy and Water in a Resource Constrained World”

Host: David Kestenbaum
Experts: Dr. Michael Hightower, Water for Energy Project Lead, Sandia National Laboratories, Nancy Stoner, Co-director of the Natural Resources Defense Council’s water initiatives.

“Corralling Swine (flu): Preparations for the Next Pandemic”

Sponsored by:
The American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Georgetown University Program on Science in the Public Interest and the American Chemical Society. For more information visit //cstsp.aaas.org/content.html?contentid=2272 .