Established in 1916 to serve as a liaison between “town and gown” in providing lectures of general public interest, the Vancouver Institute lectures are in Lecture Hall No. 2 in the Woodward Instructional Resources Centre, at UBC. All lectures are free to the public and have presented lectures by UBC faculty members as well as other world class scholars and news-makers that have brought university and community together. Since 2009, the Irving K. Barber Learning Centre has collaborated with the Vancouver Institute in webcasting selected lectures for an off-campus audience. The University Archives holds audio and video tapes of the more recent lectures, which are also listed as a distinct collection in cIRcle.
On April 9, 2011, Professor Lawrence Krauss’ gave a talk titled, “Life, the Universe, and Nothing: A Cosmic Mystery Story.” Krauss’ work has been primarily in theoretical (as opposed to experimental) physics, and he has published research on a great variety of topics within that field. Krauss is a renowned cosmologist and popularizer of modern science and director of the Origins Project at Arizona State University. Hailed by Scientific American as a rare public intellectual, he is the author of more than three hundred scientific publications and 8 books, including the bestselling The Physics of Star Trek, and the recipient of numerous international awards for his research and writing. He is an internationally known theoretical physicist with wide research interests, including the interface between elementary particle physics and cosmology, where his studies include the early universe, the nature of dark matter, general relativity and neutrino astrophysics. His soon to be published book, A Universe From Nothing: Why There Is Something Rather Than Nothing is already garnering strong reviews. Exploring the scientific advances that provide insight into how the universe formed, Krauss ultimately tackles the age-old assumption that something cannot arise from nothing by arguing that not only can something arise from nothing, but something will always arise from nothing. One review of this book says:
Lawrence Krauss’s provocative answers to these and other timeless questions in a wildly popular lecture now on YouTube have attracted almost a million viewers. The last of these questions in particular has been at the center of religious and philosophical debates about the existence of God, and it’s the supposed counterargument to anyone who questions the need for God. As Krauss argues, scientists have, however, historically focused on other, more pressing issues—such as figuring out how the universe actually functions, which can ultimately help us to improve the quality of our lives.
- Amazon Book Review
Vancouver Institute lectures are free and open to the public. The Vancouver Institute was established in 1916 to serve as a liaison between “town and gown” in providing lectures of general public interest. For more information about the Vancouver Institute, please visit its homepage at http://vaninst.ca. To view this webcast, please find here.
For more information, please contact Allan Cho