Downtown Science Café

Magpies Gourmet Pizza 4th Ave.
605 N. 4th Ave., Tucson, AZ

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Magpies Gourmet Pizza Downtown

UPDATE: In light of continued concerns for public safety and recommendations to minimize the spread of the COVID-19 virus, the College of Science has decided to cancel the remaining Science Café talks scheduled for April & May 2020.

From Science to Stewardship: Earth Science In Action

How do we build a bridge from scientific knowledge to environmental action? This series will look at how scientific research can help us find the path to a sustainable future, how research informs land management policy, and how we use STEM knowledge to conserve and restore the natural ecosystems that we depend on to survive. The researchers in this series have all found ways to apply what they have learned through science. They share science to help society make the best decisions about how we use our land and water to shape a healthy world for all living things. Learn about the journey from Science to Stewardship in this new Science Café series!


Don Falk
Professor, School of Natural Resources and the Environment, Laboratory of Tree-Ring Research

Can Science Save the World’s Forests?

Date/Time: 1/21/2020 | 6:00 PM

Venue & Address: Magpies Gourmet Pizza 4th Ave., 605 N. 4th Ave., Tucson, AZ

Talk Description: Forests represent a key biome for the planet Earth. They support a dazzling diversity of species, they store vast amounts of carbon, and they are home to many human cultures. As our climate changes, forests are under stress, from drought and higher temperatures to increased wildfires and insect outbreaks. Can our forests adapt to survive? In this Science Café, leading forest and wildfire expert Don Falk will explore how forests are coping with climate stress, and how science can help.

Dawson Fairbanks
Doctoral Candidate, Department of Soil, Water, and Environmental Science

Putting Microbes to Work for Clean Water and Heathy Soil

Date/Time: 2/20/2020 | 6:00 PM

Venue & Address: Magpies Gourmet Pizza 4th Ave., 605 N. 4th Ave., Tucson, AZ

Talk Description: Most of us don’t often think about microbes, the tiny organisms that live all around us, especially in soil. Those microbes support all the higher forms of life, from plants to birds to people. The more we understand about the role of this microbial “unseen majority,” the more we can support microbes to help stabilize carbon, conserve soil, and foster resilient watersheds. In this Café we’ll learn why humans and ecosystems need microbes to survive in a rapidly warming world.

Ariel Leger
Graduate Student, Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science

(CANCELLED) From Invasive Shrubs to Grassland Restoration: The Chop n’ Drop Method

Date/Time: 3/17/2020 | 6:00 PM

Venue & Address: Magpies Gourmet Pizza 4th Ave., 605 N. 4th Ave., Tucson, AZ

Talk Description: In Southwestern Arizona, grasslands provide essential ecosystem services such as clean water, forage for cattle, and habitat for wildlife. Unfortunately, the grasslands are under threat. Large areas of Southern Arizona's historic grasslands are caught in a cycle of degradation due to continuous grazing and drought, which in turn encourages the dominance of woody shrubs such as mesquite and creosote. This cycle exposes the topsoil to erosion and amplifies the problem. However, scientific studies have found low cost methods to reverse the cycle of degradation and restore our native grasslands. Find out more about how science has found solutions at this month’s Science Café.

Elise Gornish
Cooperative Extension Specialist in Ecological Restoration, School of Natural Rescources and the Environment 

(CANCELLED) How to Heal the Desert: Strategies for Restoration

Date/Time: 4/21/2020 | 6:00 PM

Venue & Address: Magpies Gourmet Pizza 4th Ave., 605 N. 4th Ave., Tucson, AZ

Talk Description: In the Southwestern United States, the health of our deserts and arid lands has been degraded by decades of neglect. Climate change, land development, and invasive non-native plants continue to stress these habitats. However, we can change that trend by restoring native plant species that foster healthy habitats. This Science Café presentation will explore why restoration is important, show how to do it, and highlight some of the novel approaches to habitat rehabilitation that can be applied by a variety of stakeholders, from the backyard gardener to the thousand-acre land manager.


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