Often when we discuss the development of chemicals and substances, the conversation usually focuses on how scientists and inventors synthesized them. In this talk, materials scientist and science writer Ainissa Ramirez will highlight how simple materials and the inventions they enabled shaped society. Based on her new book The Alchemy of Us, she will show how everyday inventions had a hand in fashioning language, politics, and even our bodies.
Ainissa Ramirez, Ph.D. is an award-winning scientist and science communicator, who is passionate about getting the general public excited about science. A graduate of Brown University, she earned her doctorate in materials science and engineering from Stanford. Dr. Ramirez started her career as a scientist at Bell Laboratories in Murray Hill, New Jersey, and later worked as an associate professor of mechanical engineering at Yale. She authored the books The Alchemy of Us and Save Our Science, and co-authored Newton’s Football. She has written for Forbes, Time, The Atlantic, Scientific American, American Scientist, and Science and has explained science headlines on CBS, CNN, NPR, ESPN, and PBS.
Ramirez speaks widely on the topics of science and technology and gave a TED talk on the importance of science education. She has been awarded prizes from the National Science Foundation, the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and the American Institute of Physics. She speaks internationally on the importance of making science fun and has served as a science advisor to the American Film Institute, WGBH/NOVA, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and several science museums. She also hosts a science podcast called Science Underground.
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