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Stanford University

Engaging Scientists Campus Events

Upcoming Events & Deadlines


Friday, January 25, 2019

9:00 am - 12:00 pm

Registration Closed
Panel Discussion
(Open to the 

Friday, January 25, 2019

4:00 - 5:30 pm

Registration Closed

Public Engagement
Contest Deadline

March 1, 2019

11:59 pm EST

Rules and submission


Public Engagement Contest

Submission Deadline: March 1, 2019, 11:59PM EST

This contest is to recognize ongoing or prospective science engagement by partner university STEM graduate students, postdocs, faculty, and staff that is focused on (or explicitly inclusive of) religious publics.

Eligible submissions must include:
    - Short essay describing the engagement activity
    - Support letter from collaborating community representative
    - Engagement product (finished or in progress)

Applicants must participate in a DoSER workshop in order to be eligible. Workshops will be offered at each partner university. A digital version of the workshop will also be available (forthcoming).

Up to four awards of $1,000 each per campus. 

Read the full rules, submission instructions, and other information here.

See creative science engagement examples here.

Professional Development Workshop: Science Communication and Engagement with Religious Publics

Friday, January 25, 2019, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Mitchell Building, Hartley Conference Center
Stanford University (Stanford, CA)



About the Workshop

Are you involved in public science engagement, or thinking about it? Are you interested in promoting dialogue about science with a broader spectrum of individuals and communities? Are you concerned about effectively navigating potential tensions at the intersections of science, culture, and faith in your classroom, your laboratory, on social media, in policy discussions, or in public settings?

The Science Communication and Engagement with Religious Publics workshop is a collaboration between the Dialogue on Science, Ethics, and Religion (DoSER) program and the Center for Public Engagement with Science and Technology, both situated within the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). It is intended as a professional development opportunity for students, communicators, educators, scientists and other professionals in STEM fields.

In this workshop, AAAS facilitators lead participants through an overview of why culture (including spirituality and faith) and worldview are important considerations for science engagement, and present strategies and best practices for effective and inclusive dialogue about science topics. The workshop includes moderated discussions and a small-group exercise to respond to a challenging question or scenario. While the focus is on dialogue with religious publics, the workshop content is relevant and applicable to effective science education, communication and engagement with a broad range of audiences.

Participants will:

  1. REVIEW key fundamentals for science communication and engagement;
  2. LEARN why dialogue with religious/spiritual publics is an important dimension to consider in effective and inclusive public science engagement;
  3. DISCUSS potential difficulties in engagement with religious publics on science issues;
  4. UNDERSTAND social science perspectives on science communication and faith;
  5. APPLY approaches for effective engagement on challenging questions or topics.

The DoSER workshop will be offered at six universities around the US in 2019 as part of the Engaging Scientists in the Science and Religion Dialogue project.

Contact for more information.

Panel Discussion: Science and Spirituality in Conversation

Free and open to the public

Friday, January 25, 2019, 4:00 - 5:30PM
Encina Hall, Bechtel Conference Center
Stanford University (Stanford, CA)


According to recent polls, most Americans are supportive of science and also identify as religious or spiritual. However, some scientists are uncertain about how to foster dialogue about science or their specific research interests with individuals who hold religious perspectives and faith-informed worldviews. This winter, please join us for a conversation between Dr. Willis Jenkins and Dr. Nalini Nadkarni, moderated by Stanford Earth Dean Stephan Graham, on developing discourse between researchers and religious publics. Dr. Nadkarni, a forest ecologist, will share her stories on how she has engages with unique audiences. Dr. Jenkins, a religious studies scholar, will explore the roles of religion and ethics in sustainability challenges.




Dr. Willis Jenkins is Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Virginia, where he convenes the Environmental Humanities faculty and teaches in the Global Sustainability program. His research focuses on ethical and cultural dimensions of ecological relations. He is the the author of two award-winning books, including The Future of Ethics: Sustainability, Social Justice, and Religious Creativity, which won an American Academy of Religion Award for Excellence. At UVA he serves on the leadership team of the Environmental Resilience Institute and co-directs the Coastal Futures Conservatory, a transdisciplinary lab integrating arts, humanities, and sciences in the study of rapid coastal change. He received his MA and PhD in Religious Studies from University of Virginia and his BA from Wheaton College.


Dr. Nalini Nadkarni is Professor of Biology at the University of Utah. She has carried out three decades of ecological research on tropical forest canopy biota. She is also deeply committed to public engagement in science, has given two TED talks, and has been highlighted in magazines such as National Geographic, Glamour, and Playboy Magazine. In 2016, she created the “STEM Ambassador Program” with funding from the National Science Foundation to train scientists to engage the public in non-traditional venues, such as churches, preschools, tattoo parlors, and sports stadiums. In 2005, she co-founded the Sustainability in Prisons Project, which brings science, scientists, and nature to incarcerated men and women, and which is now being expanded to a national level. She received her B.S. degree from Brown University, and her Ph.D. from University of Washington. Her awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship, the AAAS Award for Public Engagement, the National Science Foundation Award for Public Service, The Carr Medal for Conservation, and the William Julius WIlson Award for Achievement in Social Justice.



Dr. Stephan Graham is the Chester Naramore Dean of the School of Earth, Energy & Environmental Sciences, Welton Joseph and Maud L'Anphere Crook Professor and Professor, by courtesy, of Geophysics and of Energy Resources Engineering at Stanford. Graham has taught courses on sedimentary geology, energy resources and policy. His multiple research projects center on the origins, evolution, and energy resources of sedimentary basins, employing multiple methodologies on outcrop and subsurface data sets. He earned a Ph.D. in Geology from Stanford.

Resources and readings from the panelists