The World's Chemistry in Our Hands: Global Environmental Challenges Past and Future

Professor Susan Solomon
Ellen Swallow Richards Professor of Atmospheric Chemistry and Climate Science at MIT

Dean of Science's Colloquium: “The World’s Chemistry in Our Hands: Global Environmental Challenges Past and Future”

September 13, 2012


Humans have faced a series of global environmental chemistry challenges in the past half-century, including ozone depletion, the use of lead products, and more. In this colloquium, Professor Solomon will explore how combinations of science, public policy, and citizen engagement can lead to solutions; she will also probe how the lessons learned can inform key challenges of the 21st century, especially climate change.

Solomon has led two expeditions to Antarctica and had a glacier named after her. She is the author of several books and influential scientific papers in climate science, and has been honored with numerous prestigious awards, including the 1999 National Medal of Science (the highest scientific honor in the US) and the Grande Medaille (the highest award of the French Academy of Sciences). A member of the National Academy of Sciences, the French Academy of Sciences, the Royal Society, and the Acadameia Europaea, Solomon also co-led the science assessment of the most recent report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize. Time Magazine named Solomon as one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2008.

Outside her core-scientific interests, Susan is the author of The Coldest March, a popular book on Antarctic history which stemmed from her frequent Antarctic sojourns during the late 80's and early 90's. Her book was selected among '2001 Books of the Year' lists of The New York Times, The Economist (UK), and The Independent (UK).

The Dean's colloquium series was established to recognize and celebrate scientists who have chosen innovative, non-traditional career paths and been unusually successful. Past speakers have included Jim Simons of Renaissance Technologies and Edward Scolnick, former President of Merck Research Laboratories.

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MIT School of Science: Dean's Colloquium Series

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