The 2012 World Science Festival took place on May 30-June 3 in New York City. We offered a slate of exciting new programs and old favorites this year, all aimed at unlocking the beauty and complexity of science for everyone. Sign up for our newsletter to stay connected and get exclusive interviews, stories, and updates on upcoming programs.


PARTICIPANTS: Mario Livio, Lawrence M. Krauss, Kelle Cruz
DATE: Saturday, June 2, 2012
TIME: 8:00 PM-11:00 PM
VENUE: Brooklyn Bridge Park – Pier 1

Join professional and amateur astronomers for a free evening of urban stargazing. An outdoor party beneath the Brooklyn Bridge and the twinkling canvas of the night sky, it will be a night to explore and discover the vast wonders of the cosmos. Bring your telescope if you have one, or use one of the dozens we’ll have on hand.

The evening kicks off with a conversation with four world-class astronomers who share their unique perspectives on the cosmos and explain the upcoming Transit of Venus, a rare astronomical event set for June 5 when Venus passes directly between the Earth and the Sun.

Afterward, mingle with the astronomers as we point the telescopes skyward and enjoy celestial tunes by Brooklyn DJ Patrick Billard.

Star chats: Conversations with astronomers – 8:00 – 10:00 PM

Turn the telescopes skyward – 9:00 – 11:00 PM

Participants and activities to be announced.

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Mario Livio is an internationally known astrophysicist, a best-selling author and a popular lecturer. His popular book The Golden Ratio: The Story of Phi, the World’s Most Astonishing Number won the Peano Prize for 2003, and the International Pythagoras Prize for 2004, as the best popular book on mathematics, while his Is God A Mathematician? was selected by the Washington Post as one of the best books of 2009.

Livio is a senior astrophysicist at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI), which conducts the scientific program of the Hubble Space Telescope, and will conduct the program for the upcoming James Webb Space Telescope. He has a regular blog, A Curious Mind, about science, art, and the links between them.

During the past decade, Livio’s research focused on supernova explosions and their use in cosmology to determine the rate of expansion of the universe, and the nature of the “dark energy” that causes the cosmic expansion to accelerate. He has also done extensive work on extrasolar planets.

Livio’s recent book, Brilliant Blunders (2013), was a New York Times Bestseller, and was selected by the Washington Post as one of the “Best Books” of 2013.

Theoretical Physicist, Cosmologist, and Author

Internationally known theoretical physicist and best-selling author Lawrence Krauss has focused his research on the intersection of cosmology and elementary particle physics. Krauss’s work addresses questions about the origin of matter in the universe, Einstein’s theory of general relativity, astrophysics, the future of the universe and the properties and description of the dark energy that is thought to account for most of the universe’s present energy content.

A fervent advocate for science literacy, Krauss has written nine books for a general audience, including the bestseller The Physics of Star Trek, and most recently A Universe from Nothing, which appeared in January of 2012. He was recently awarded the National Science Board’s 2012 Public Service Award for his contributions to public understanding of science. Krauss is Foundation Professor in the School of Earth and Space Exploration and Director of the ASU Origins Project at Arizona State University.

Assistant Professor in Physics and Astronomy

Kelle Cruz is an Assistant Professor in the Physics and Astronomy Department at Hunter College and a Research Associate at the American Museum of Natural History (AMNH), Department of Astrophysics. She specializes in observational studies of low-mass stars and brown dwarfs, specifically the link between stars, brown dwarfs, and planets. Born and raised in San Antonio, TX, she received both her BA and PhD in Physics and Astronomy from the University of Pennsylvania. She first came to New York and AMNH in 2004 as an NSF Astronomy and Postdoctoral Fellow. Before returning to New York, she spent two years as Spitzer Postdoctoral Fellow at Caltech in Pasadena, CA. Kelle has consistently been an advocate for professional development training for astronomers. She founded and is the primary contributor to a blog and wiki for professional astronomers AstroBetter.com where the tips of the trade are discussed. Kelle enjoys indoor gardening, playing tennis, and is an avid bicycle commuter.