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John Schwartz, professor of civil and environmental engineering, will look at the difficulties that have resulted from efforts to restore healthy ecosystems impacted by urban development at this week’s Science Forum.

John Schwartz

His talk, “Restoring Urban Streams: What is ‘Natural’?” will be held at noon in Room C-D of Thompson-Boling Arena on Friday, October 23.

The Science Forum is a weekly brown-bag lunch series that allows professors and area scientists to discuss their research with the general public in a conversational presentation.

Free and open to the public, each Science Forum consists of a forty-minute presentation followed by a Q-and-A session. Attendees are encouraged to bring their own lunch or purchase it at the cafe in Thompson-Boling Arena. The Science Forum, sponsored by the UT Office of Research and Quest magazine, is an initiative to raise awareness of the research, scholarship, and creative activity happening on campus.

Schwartz will talk about the history of the $5 billion stream restoration industry and how the work contributed to project failures in urban streams. He’ll also explain how research being done at UT could improve urban stream restoration.

Schwartz earned his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from the University of Missouri, Columbia, and his master’s degree in fisheries science from Oregon State University. He then earned his doctoral degree in environmental engineering from the University of Illinois before being hired by UT in 2003.

The weekly Science Forum continues throughout the semester:

October 30—David Matthews, professor of architecture and design, chair of interior design, “Design Thinking and Creative Process: How Designers Approach Wicked Problems and Engage the Future”

November 6—Matthew Mench, Condra Chair of Excellence Professor and head of the Department of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Biomedical Engineering, “Where Do We Put All the Renewable Energy?”

November 13—Melissa R. Allen, postdoctoral researcher at Oak Ridge National Laboratory, “Climate Variability and Change: What Fundamental Science and Modeling Tell Us”

November 20—Natalie Mong, education director for Upstate Birds of Prey, “The Fascinating Biology of Birds of Prey”


Amy Blakely (865-974-5034,