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Honors Colloquium

Fall 2008 Honors Colloquium

Nobel Prize-winning scientist to discuss evidence of global warming in URI Honors Colloquium lecture, Sept. 23

Michael MannMichael Mann, director of the Earth System Science Center at Penn State University will discuss the scientific evidence of global climate change as part of the University of Rhode Island’s annual fall Honors Colloquium.

Free and open to the public, the lecture will be held Sept. 23 at 7:30 p.m. in Edwards Auditorium on URI’s Kingston Campus.

The 2008 Honors Colloquium, “People and Planet: Global Environmental Change,” will explore human-caused global change, its consequences and potential responses through a series of lectures, films, exhibits and a cabaret. Weekly events run through Dec. 9.

Mann is internationally known for demonstrating that northern hemisphere temperatures were exceptionally warm during the last 20 years compared to the past 1,300 years. As the lead author on the “Observed Climate Variability and Change” chapter of the most recent scientific assessment by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, he shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with Al Gore and other IPCC authors.

Mann’s lecture will review what he calls “the now-solid evidence for a human influence on the climate of recent decades,” including “instrumental measurements available for the past two centuries, paleoclimate observations spanning more than a millennium, and comparisons of the predictions from computer models with observed patterns of climate change.” He will also address future likely impacts of climate change, and conclude with a discussion of possible solutions.

The editor of the Journal of Climate, Mann was named one of the 50 leading visionaries in science and technology by Scientific American and received the outstanding scientific publication award from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. He recently co-authored the book Dire Predictions: Understanding Global Warming and co-founded the award-winning science website

Mann’s climate change research has been widely described in the popular media, including on ABC, CBS, NBC and CNN news programs, Time Magazine, US News and World Report, USA Today, New York Times, Wall Street Journal and Boston Globe.

For background material on this lecture, click here.


Major Sponsor:

The G. Unger Vetlesen Foundation

Sustaining Sponsors:

URI Office of the President; URI Honors Program; The Mark and Donna Ross Honors Colloquium Humanities Endowment; The Thomas Silvia and Shannon Chandley Honors Colloquium Endowment.

Leadership Sponsors:

URI Graduate School of Oceanography and URI College of Arts and Sciences.


Environmental Data Center, URI Department of Natural Resources Science; R.I. Center for the Book at Providence Public Library; R.I. Office of Library and Information Services; R.I. Sea Grant College Program; U.S. E.P.A. Office of Research and Development, Atlantic Ecology Division; URI Classroom Media Services; URI Coastal Institute; URI College of Business Administration; URI College of Engineering; URI College of the Environment and Life Sciences; URI College of Human Science and Services; URI College of Nursing; URI College of Pharmacy; URI Division of Student Affairs; URI Division of University Advancement and the URI Alumni Association; URI Foundation; URI Office of the Provost; URI Office of the Vice President for Administration; URI Office of the Vice Provost for Information Technology Services; URI University College.

Colloquium Coordinators:

Professor Steven D'Hondt, Graduate School of Oceanography;
Professor Arthur Spivack, Graduate School of Oceanography;
Professor Judith Swift, Theatre and Communication Studies.

For information about ways to support the Honors Colloquium, contact Tom Zorabedian at 401-874-2853 or