'Father' of modern environmental movement to speak at Penn State

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Edward O. Wilson, the biologist who is widely considered to be the father of the modern environmental movement, will speak at 5:30 p.m. on April 16, in Room 100 of the Thomas Building on Penn State's University Park campus. His talk, titled "The Social Conquest of Earth," will be held as part of the eighth annual Colloquium on the Environment speaker series. A book signing and reception will immediately follow his lecture, and the event is free and open to the public.

Named one of America's 25 Most Influential People by TIME magazine, and a two-time Pulitzer Prize winner, he has made a large contribution to our understanding of the rich spectrum of Earth's biodiversity.

Wilson's works include "Ants and On Human Nature," which both won the Pulitzer Prize; "The Future of Life," which offers a plan for saving Earth's biological heritage; "Consilience," which draws together the sciences, humanities and the arts into a broad study of human knowledge; "The Creation," a plea for science and religion to work together to save the planet; and "From So Simple a Beginning," a collection of the four seminal works of Charles Darwin, with new introductions by Wilson. His 2008 book, "The Superorganism," was hailed by The New York Times as "an astonishing account of the intricate and unexpected swarm intelligence of wasps, bees, ants and termites." Wilson's forthcoming book is titled "The Social Conquest of Earth."

A recent project of Wilson's, the Encyclopedia of Life website, catalogs all key information about life of Earth -- including data about every living species -- and makes it accessible to everyone. Launched with money from his 2007 TED Prize, the Encyclopedia of Life recently received an additional $10 million from the MacArthur Foundation. Wilson also is the recipient of the U.S. National Medal of Science, the Crafoord Prize (a sister to the Nobel), and the Audubon Medal. He is the University Research Professor Emeritus at Harvard University, and continues to research at the Museum of Comparative Zoology. Recently, Wilson teamed with Harrison Ford to create a new PEN Literary award titled the PEN/E.O. Wilson Award for Literary Science Writing.

Event is sponsored by University's Finance and Business Environmental Stewardship Strategy and the Penn State Institutes of Energy and the Environment.

Last Updated April 18, 2012