On December 8th, the work of the Philomathia program will take centre stage in England as the University of Cambridge’s Philomathia program hosts its second annual Symposium at Magdalene College.

The Philomathia program at the University of Cambridge focuses on social sciences, the humanities, and the promotion of human values in education and research. As part of its mandate, the program hosts a number of interdisciplinary ‘forum’ discussion events throughout the year.

University of CambridgeThose forum events raise a number of important issues and discussions, worthy of further exploration in a more prominent venue. So last year, the program hosted its first symposium, which serves as a culmination of the year’s forum discussions.

The symposium aims to shine a light on the research facilitated by the Philomathia program at Cambridge, in a broad, public-facing way that appeals to specialists and non-specialists alike. Academics, policy makers, government representatives and members of the public will be in attendance, casting a spotlight on the important work being done within the program, and examining the policy implications of its research.

Symposium Addresses a Critical Question

This year’s symposium is centred on a crucial question that is of vital concern to any social sciences researcher: what world will we leave our grandchildren?

It’s a broad question, with far-reaching implications, so to crystallize the discussion, it’s been broken down in to three panels: Austerity, Precarity and Heritage. There will be some top-notch speakers on hand, supported by a roster of distinguished panelists, to lead the conversations.

What world will we leave our grandchildren? Philomathia Symposium 2015Paul Johnson, Director of the Institute for Fiscal Studies will open the session on austerity.

Kate Clark – Head of Cadw (the Welsh government’s historic environment organisation) will open the heritage panel.

The precarity panel will deal with the uncertainty that humanity faces, particularly in regard to climate change. Lord Martin Rees of Cambridge University – an eminent astrophysicist and cosmologist – will open that particular session.

Keynote Address

The 2015 Philomathia Symposium will culminate with a keynote address from Professor Robert Putnam of Harvard University. Professor Putnam is an expert on social capital and public policy, and will speak directly to the main question of the day. He is expected to provide some insightful commentary, having recently authored the book Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis.

Professor Putnam is incredibly well-regarded, having been called ‘the most influential academic in the world today’ by the London Sunday Times newspaper.

In all, it should be a fantastic way to wrap up what will be an enlightening day of enriching discussion.

Just the Facts

Philomathia Symposium 2015
December 8, 2015
Magdalene College, Cambridge
More information: at the University of Cambridge’s Philomathia website.
To attend: please contact Dr Kristen Klebba via philomathia@admin.cam.ac.uk to RSVP.