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2015 David J. Rose Lectureship in Nuclear Technology

Climate Change and Energy:
How Can Young People Take Ownership of Their Future?
Dr. James Hansen
April 14, 2015

Read MIT News article about the lecture


James Hansen

Dr. James Hansen, formerly Director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, is an Adjunct Professor at Columbia University’s Earth Institute, where he directs the Program on Climate Science, Awareness and Solutions. He was trained in physics and astronomy in the space science program of Dr. James Van Allen at the University of Iowa. His early research on the clouds of Venus helped identify their composition as sulfuric acid. Since the late 1970s, he has focused his research on Earth’s climate, especially human-made climate change.

Dr. Hansen is best known for his testimony on climate change to congressional committees in the 1980s that helped raise broad awareness of the global warming issue.

He was elected to the National Academy of Sciences in 1995 and was designated by Time Magazine in 2006 as one of the 100 most influential people on Earth. He has received numerous awards including the Carl-Gustaf Rossby and Roger Revelle Research Medals, the Sophie Prize and the Blue Planet Prize. Dr. Hansen is widely recognized for his efforts to outline actions that the public must take to protect the future of young people and other life on our planet.

Dr. Hansen’s website.

David J. Rose Lectureship in Nuclear Technology

This distinguished lectureship honors the memory of David J. Rose (1922-1985), a renowned professor of nuclear engineering at MIT. The lectureship was established in December 1984 on the occasion of Professor Rose's retirement and in recognition of his work in fusion technology, energy, nuclear waste disposal, and his concern with ethical problems arising from advances in science and technology.

Professor Rose received his B.A.Sc. degree in engineering physics from the University of British Columbia in 1947 and his Ph.D. degree in Physics from MIT in 1950. When the Department of Nuclear Engineering at MIT was formed in 1958, David Rose was invited to join the faculty. He went on to lead the development of the Department’s program in plasmas and controlled fusion, and remained a member of the MIT faculty for the rest of his professional career.

Professor Rose's professional life encompassed three distinguished careers: scientist and engineer; technology/policy analyst; and bridge builder between the scientific and theological communities. He authored over 150 articles ranging from high technology to theology, and with Melville Clark wrote Plasmas and Controlled Fusion, which became the standard textbook in the field of fusion energy. Professor Rose's book, Learning About Energy, which drew on two decades of research and teaching on energy technology and policy, was published posthumously. Before joining the MIT faculty, Professor Rose was a member of the technical staff at Bell Labs. While on leave from MIT in the early 1970s he served as the first Director of the Office of Long Range Planning at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. He was honored as a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, a Fellow of the American Physical Society and a Fellow of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science. In 1975 Professor Rose received the Arthur Holly Compton Award of the American Nuclear Society for excellence in teaching, and at MIT he was the recipient of the James R. Killian Faculty Achievement Award in 1979-80. In 1986, the Board of Directors of Fusion Power Associates established a prize to be presented annually for excellence in fusion engineering in honor of Professor Rose.

Past David J. Rose Lecturers:

Lady Barbara Judge, 2013

John Holdren, 2010
Assistant to the President for Science and Technology

Susan Eisenhower, 2008
President of the Eisenhower Group, Inc

Mohamed El Baradei, 2005
Director General, International Atomic Energy Agency
2005 Nobel Peace Prize Recipient

Richard A. Meserve, 2004
President of Carnegie Institution

Evgeny P. Velikhov, 2000
President of Kurchatov Institute

Pete V. Domenici, 1998
Senator of New Mexico
Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on
Energy and Water Development

Albert Carnesale, 1996
Provost of Harvard University

Wolfe Häfele, 1994
Director of the Research Center
Rossendorf/Dresden, Germany

D. Allan Bromley, 1992
Science Advisor to the President

Hans Blix, 1989
Secretary General of the IAEA

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