MISSOULA – The inaugural “Lecture at the Nexus” at the University of Montana will highlight the importance of science communication.
Award-winning environmental journalist Ben Goldfarb will launch the lecture series at 4 p.m. Monday, Nov. 5, in the Thompson Auditorium of UM’s Gilkey Executive Education Building. He will present “Beavers: Their Landscape, Our Future,” with a reception in the foyer outside the auditorium to follow at 5 p.m. Both events are free and open to the public.
Goldfarb’s UM visit is co-sponsored by the UM Office of the Provost and School of Journalism, with additional support from the National Wildlife Federation.
Earlier that day at noon, Goldfarb also will lead a Nexus Forum with a UM faculty panel titled “Water Availability in a Changing Climate” in the Ainslie Networking Lounge, located in the lower level of the Gilkey Building. His fellow panelists will be Dr. Ashley Ballantyne of the Department of Ecosystem and Conservation Sciences, Dr. Elizabeth Metcalf of the Department of Society and Conservation, and Dr. Andrew Wilcox from the Department of Geosciences.
Goldfarb has written for Orion Magazine, The Guardian, Science, The Washington Post, Outside and Scientific American, among other outlets. He is the author of “Eager: The Surprising, Secret Life of Beavers and Why They Matter.” The Washington Post calls Goldfarb’s book a “humor-laced page-turner about the science of semi-aquatic rodents” and a “masterpiece of a treatise on the natural world.”
“We are excited that Ben is coming to speak at UM,” said UM BRIDGES Program Coordinator Alisa Wade. “His work provides an excellent example of how science writing can be funny, relevant and inspire action.”
The “Lecture at the Nexus” series is hosted by UM BRIDGES, an interdisciplinary graduate training program that prepares future leaders to advance societally relevant science at the nexus of water-energy-food systems. Water-energy-food systems are inherently interconnected, forming a nexus that is critical to societies, economies
Wade said the inaugural “Lecture at the Nexus” speaker will provide an example of engaging and entertaining science communication, focusing on the importance of beavers as landscape engineers with critical implications for water-energy-food systems across their range.