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David Ostermeier, a professor in forestry, wildlife, and fisheries, will talk about environmental challenges associated with the world’s growing population on Friday, September 28, at this week’s Science Forum.

The Science Forum is a weekly brown bag lunch series that allows professors and area scientists to discuss their research and the general public to learn about science in a way they can understand.

The weekly presentations begin at noon on Fridays in room C-D of the Arena Dining area of Thompson-Boling Arena. Attendees can bring lunch or purchase it at the arena. Each presentation is forty minutes long and is followed by a question-and-answer session. It is free and open to the public.

Ostermeier’s talk, titled “Governing the Environment in Complex Times,” will include a discussion of challenges in land use, biodiversity, and climate. He will then discuss the implications of those challenges for environmental policymakers and how the government, the private sector, and citizens can work together to address these issues, both locally and worldwide.

“My area of work is natural resource policy,” Ostermeier said, “and so these are topics that I have been working with for some time.”

Future science forums will feature:

  • October 5: Rich Giannone, who works in the chemical sciences division at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, will present “Yellowstone’s Hot Bacteria and the Future of Biofuels.”
  • October 12: no meeting, fall break
  • October 19: Dana Dodd, president of the Appalachian Bear Rescue, will talk about “Saving Orphan Bears and Returning Them to the Wild.”
  • October 26: J.R. Shrute, co-director and co-founder of Conservation Fisheries, Inc., will present “Saving the Imperiled Fishes of Southern Appalachia.”
  • November 2: J.P. Dessel, Steinfeld associate professor of Near Eastern History and Archaeology, will discuss “The State of the Ancient State: New Finds in Southeastern Turkey.”
  • November 9: Alison G. Boyer, research assistant professor of ecology and evolutionary biology, will present “Trouble in Paradise: Extinction and Conservation of Tropical Island Birds.”
  • November 16: Rob Heller, professor of journalism and electronic media, will discuss “A Brief Yet Incomplete History of Photojournalism.”
  • November 23: no meeting, Thanksgiving break
  • November 30: Sue Hume, clinical associate professor of audiology and speech pathology, will present “Good Vibrations—Care and Use of the Professional Voice.”

The Science Forum is sponsored by the UT Office of Research. For more information, visit

C O N T A C T :

Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,

Holly Gary (865-974-2225,