Science Cafés

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Public meetings at which citizens explore the latest ideas in science have been occurring for nearly twelve years around the nation following the Science Café or Café Scientifique model. The Research Translation Core (RTC) has brought this institution to small towns near Iowa City to engage a less academically oriented audience in learning about SRP work and other exciting science research from the College of Public Health.

Dr. Ludewig presenting at café

The evening’s format is a short (20 minute) presentation by a researcher followed by breakout into small groups led by graduate students and the presenter to elicit responses to these TED-like talks.

In 2017, we held twelve Science Cafes in three communities, including presentations by three isrp project and core leaders.


Cafés for 2017 included:

  • "Germans recycle more than we do. Can we do more?" by Dr. Hans Lehmler
  • "Water Quality Improvement in Iowa: Are solutions possible if change is only voluntary?" by David Osterberg, MA, MS
  • "Zika Virus and birth defects" by Dr. Paul Romitti
  • "Nitrates in water and human health" by Dr. Pete Weyer

More cafés will be scheduled for 2018. The emphasis of all Science Cafés will be on scientific discovery, hypotheses testing, and the development of public policy based on scientific advancement.