Athens, Ga. – University of Georgia psychology professor Keith Campbell will speak at the first meeting of the Athens Science Cafe on Feb. 25 at Ciné. The doors will open at 6:30 p.m., and the event will start at 7 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.
Science cafes are informal meetings commonly held in coffee shops, pubs or community centers where people have an opportunity to learn from and interact with a scientist. Unlike traditional lectures, science cafes involve more open discussion and debate among the audience.
“This is a place where people with a passion for knowledge can hang out, enjoy some food and drink and learn something new,” said Stephanie Pearl, a postdoctoral researcher at UGA and co-organizer of the cafe. “It’s a really relaxed atmosphere, and you definitely don’t have to know anything about science to participate.”
Campbell, who is also head of UGA’s psychology department, will give a short introductory talk before leading an informal discussion among participants about the science of love and relationships, a topic chosen by organizers in recognition of Valentine’s Day.
The Athens Science Cafe joins hundreds of similar organizations throughout the U.S. who work to generate more dialogue between scientists and the public. The Athens cafe was developed by UGA students, staff and other local residents who share a love of science.
“We come from a lot of different backgrounds, some in the sciences and some not,” Pearl said. “But one thing we all share is a love of learning and our community, so we thought this would be an excellent way to unite those passions and do something positive for Athens.”
Organizers hope to have a new meeting every month. Their second meeting will be March 18 at 7 p.m. upstairs at The Globe. Wayne Parrott, professor of crop and soil sciences, will lead a discussion on the facts and fictions of genetically modified organisms.
For more information about the Athens Science Cafe, see http://athenssciencecafe.wordpress.com or follow @AthSciCafe on Twitter.