Featured science presenters

Featured Presenters

Photo- F. Imamoglu © C. Koch

Dr. Christof Koch

Neuroscience: Dr. Christof Koch

Dr. Koch is an American neuroscientist best known for his studies and writings exploring the brainbasis of consciousness. Trained as a physicist, Koch was for 27 years a professor of biology and engineering at the California Institute of Technology. He is now Chief Scientific Officer at the Allen Institute for Brain Science in Seattle, leading a ten year, large-scale, high through-put effort to build brain observatories to map, analyze and understand the mouse and human cerebral cortex.  He is the author of The Quest for Consciousness: A Neuroscientific Approach and his latest book is Consciousness – Confessions of a Romantic Reductionist. 

Dr. Christopher Impey

Physics: Dr. Chris Impey

Dr. Impey is a University Distinguished Professor at the Department of Astronomy at the University of Arizona. He has over 180 refereed publications on observational cosmology, galaxies, and quasars, and his research has been supported by $20 million in  NASA and NSF grants.  He has won eleven teaching awards,and has taught two online classes with over 70,000 enrolled. Impey is a past Vice President of the American Astronomical Society and he has been an NSF Distinguished Teaching Scholar, the Carnegie Council’s Arizona Professor of the Year, and most recently a Howard Hughes Medical Institute Professor. His popular science books include How It Began: A Time-traveler's Guide to the Universe and Humble Before the Void.

Dr. John Durant

Philosophy of Science: Dr. John Durant

Dr. Durant is the Museum Director and Adjunct Professor in the Science, Technology & Society Program at Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  He is the founder editor of the quarterly peer review journal, Public Understanding of Science, and the author and editor of numerous books, essay collections and scholarly articles in the history and the public understanding of science.  Additionally Dr. Durant won a $3 million grant from the National Science Foundation to set up an alliance that would help start and facilitate science festivals. The Science Festival Alliance, based at the M.I.T. Museum, now has more than 50 member organizations.


Dr. Scott Gilbert
Biology: Dr. Scott Gilbert

Scott F. Gilbert is Professor Emeritus of biology at Swarthmore College (USA) andthe University of Helsinki (Finland). He is the author and co-author of several books,including Bioethics and the New Embryology: Springboard for DebateDevelopmental Biology (now in its tenth edition), and Ecological Developmental Biology. He received his MA in the history of science and his PhD in biology from the Johns Hopkins University. Scott’s research concerns how changes in embryonic development cangenerate new types of anatomical structures (such as turtle shells) and how symbiotic microbes become critical for the production of organs during normaldevelopment.