Coffee Hour with Neil Brown | C. Greg Knight memorial event | Agrobiodiversity and resilience


HaitiSara Hanson (B.S. ’13) sends in this photo from a trip to Haiti in June 2015. The shot was taken from the helicopter on route to the fourth mountain location, where her team camped and surveyed the reptile and amphibian diversity. Send your photos from fieldwork and travels to


Lucas Harris received a NASA Space Grant Fellowship and a Travel Grant to give a paper at the 6th international Fire Congress in San Antonio.

Catherine Airey received a Joint Fire Science Program with Alan Taylor on the interactions of land use and climate change on fire and on forest change in the Sawtooth Mountains in Idaho and a Travel Grant to give a paper at the 6th international Fire Congress in San Antonio, Texas.

Alan Taylor received a grant from the joint fire sciences program to study fire and forest development in old growth ponderosa pine forests in California

Graduate students Adrienne Tucker and Jase Bernhardt and undergraduate Jordan Qualtieri-Tyrrell, attended the AAG Middle States Meeting this past weekend in Binghamton, NY. Tucker and Bernhardt each presented talks in the Weather and Climate session, while all three successfully participated in the regional geography bowl, with Bernhardt qualifying to play in the World Geography Bowl at the National AAG Meeting in San Francisco.

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October 16 Coffee Hour with Neil Brown
“Engaging geographically dispersed communities of learners in scholarly discourse on global phenomena”
We continue to see complex, globally relevant, human-environmental issues such as climate change, sustainability, and food security, in the news and being debated at the ballot boxes. Unfortunately, the importance of these issues is often undermined by the difficulty in interpreting and communicating their relevance to our lives and the many ways in which they manifest in local contexts.

Climate models used to explain formation of Mars valley networks
The extensive valley networks on the surface of Mars were probably created by running water billions of years ago, but the source of that water is unknown. Now, a team of Penn State and NASA researchers is using climate models to predict how greenhouse warming could be the source of the water.

2015–16 Humbert H. Humphrey Fellow Panel Presentations
The Humphrey Fellowship Program is a one-year non-degree program of combined academic and professional development opportunities. It brings accomplished mid-career professionals from designated countries of Africa, Asia, Latin America, the Caribbean, and the Middle East to selected universities in the United States for public service, advanced study, professional training, and work-related experiences. All presentations are at noon in Foster Auditorium, Paterno Library.

  • November 9: Millennium Development Goals in Algeria, Belize, and Pakistan:
  • November 16: Higher Education Systems in Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Mexico, and Pakistan
  • November 30: Teacher Education in El Salvador, Iran, and the Philippines


Understanding agrobiodiversity and the rise of resilience: analytic category, conceptual boundary object or meta-level transition?
By Karl S. Zimmerer in Resilience: International Policies, Practices and Discourses
The use of resilience as a concept has expanded significantly in scientific research and policy with regard to social–ecological interactions and sustainability. This paper asks first how resilience is being used analytically in studies of social–ecological systems. It then queries how resilience is being applied conceptually as a boundary object in scientific studies and policy formulations that seek to connect across social and environmental systems. It also asks how the use of resilience as a concept may reflect significant political and economic transitions.


Last week’s dog was Bella, part of Chris and Lara Fowler’s family. Send a photo of your animal companion to

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