The MBL-ASU History of Biology Seminar is an intensive week with annually varying topics designed for a group of no more than 25 advanced graduate students, postdoctoral associates, younger scholars, and established researchers in biology, history, philosophy, and the social sciences.
The conservation mission of zoos and aquariums is a significant part of their institutional and public heritage. This mission, however, raises a complex and intellectually rich set of historical, philosophical, scientific, and policy questions and challenges, especially as these institutions take on a greater role in biodiversity conservation efforts in the coming decades. The 2014 seminar will therefore be organized around different approaches to understanding the history and philosophy of zoos and aquariums. A special focus will be the intersection of these discussions with the wider tradition of nature conservation, as well as with other scientific and policy narratives relevant to zoological institutions and their place on a rapidly evolving conservation landscape.
The seminar is an excellent opportunity for graduate students studying any aspect of the history and philosophy of zoos and aquariums to learn from others with similar interests. It is also a forum in which natural and social scientists can join with historians and philosophers to study the history of science and policymaking characterizing zoo and aquarium conservation. Woods Hole is home to the nation’s oldest marine aquarium, making this an ideal venue to explore the past, present, and future of zoo and aquarium conservation in a changing world.
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