The Distinguished Lecture Series started in Fall 2016 to honor faculty for their research impact. Department chairs, center/institute directors, deans, and Research Advisory Council members nominate highly engaging presenters with a broad topical appeal. Distinguished Lecturers are selected for their ability to increase the knowledge of our community by connecting their research with societal and community concerns. Topics span all colleges and schools at Michigan Tech. Nominees are reviewed by committee twice per year and announced at the beginning of fall and spring semesters.
Explore the Distinguished Lecture Series below. For information on recent and upcoming lectures, visit the Michigan Tech Research Forum website here.
Expanding spheres: Atoms to Earth, local to global, science to society
Best case scenario. Worst case scenario. Sarah Green talks about the human impacts of climate change and responding to those changes on local and global scales. Green, a professor in both the Department of Chemistry and the Great Lakes Research Center at Michigan Technological University, presented the Spring 2018 Distinguished Lecture at the Michigan Tech Research Forum. Her lecture, Expanding Spheres: Atoms to Earth, Local to Global, Science to Society, was Thursday, February 15, 2018.
It’s not about wolves: Interdisciplinary knowledge for a sustainable, just and prosperous world
John A. Vucetich
Dr. John Vucetich presented the Fall 2017 Distinguished Lecture at the Michigan Tech Research Forum. His lecture, It’s Not About Wolves: Interdisciplinary Knowledge for a Sustainable, Just and Prosperous World, took place November 7, 2017. Vucetich discussed environmental ethics and how it bridges the world of environmental sciences and natural resource management.
"Much of my work is aimed at developing insights that emerge from the synthesis of science and ethics,” says Vucetich, a professor in the School of Forest Resources and Environmental Science (SFRES) at Michigan Technological University. "Environmental ethicists and environmental scientists have a common goal, which is to better understand how we ought to relate to nature,” he adds. “Nevertheless, these two groups employ wildly different methods and premises, and sadly, they rarely interact.”
Excerpted from an article written by Kim Gieger for Michigan Tech News, Published November 3, 2017
Volcanology - Multidisciplinary science for a versatile campus
Dr. Simon Carn was nominated by Dr. John Gierke and selected from a highly competitive pool of candidates as the Spring 2017 Distinguished Lecturer. His lecture, Volcanology — Multidisciplinary Science for a Versatile Campus, was presented in April 2017.
Volcanology – the study of volcanoes – is a truly multidisciplinary endeavor that encompasses numerous fields including geology, physics, chemistry, material science and social science. Arguably, Michigan Tech owes its very existence to volcanic activity, which is ultimately responsible for the area’s rich copper deposits and the development of mining in the Keweenaw.
Making research matter: Democratizing science and other lofty goals
Dr. Richelle Winkler gave the inaugural Michigan Tech Research Forum Distinguished Lecture in October 2016. She discussed Making Research Matter: Democratizing Science and Other Lofty Goals.
Professor Hugh Gorman nominated Winkler, an associate professor of sociology and demography, for “community engaged scholarship" that extends across the Michigan Tech campus.
Examples of Winkler's projects include examining the feasibility—social and technical—of using mine water for geothermal heating systems in Calumet and examining the social, economic, and technical aspects of improving recycling in Houghton County. Both projects involve students and community members, and both have a real impact in the communities.
Winkler also conducts research on the changing demographics of anglers and hunters—and the implications for policy. She presented on this subject at the Department of Biological Sciences earlier in the year.