2018 Penn Teach-In: The Production, Dissemination and Use of Knowledge March 18-22

Knowledge is the lifeblood of the University. But in a time of a great burgeoning of knowledge we also face in the body politic a growing unease about epistemology, the provenance of information and the course of the Academy. Faced with these troubled times, Penn’s Faculty Senate has organized a pan-university Teach-In on the rigors of knowledge creation, the difficulties encountered in communicating knowledge in an era of social media and fake news and the positive and negatives impacts of knowledge in a time of instability and unrest. A half-century after the campus teach-ins during the social turmoil of the ’60s, it seems entirely appropriate that we recreate a community dialogue on knowledge and the Academy. What is the role of the University in the 21st century? And how best can we renew the Franklinian compact to place the advancement of knowledge in the service of the continuous betterment of the human condition?

The Teach-In will take place March 18-22, 2018. This is a truly collective enterprise, the first on this scale at Penn in half a century. With enthusiastic support from the President, Provost and Deans, faculty from across Penn’s schools, staff from the Library and the Museum, student representatives from SCUE, UA and GAPSA, and members of PPSA and WPPSA have banded together to initiate a dialogue, spanning disciplines, on pressing issues of the day. And we are inviting the civic community, schools, local organizations, and policy makers, both in Philadelphia and in our capitals, into our campus to be a part of this dialogue. All of the events are open and free to the community and the public.  

The schedule and the program of events can be found on the Teach-In website: http://www.upenn.edu/teachin The topics cover complex, frequently contentious, issues: artificial intelligence, firearm violence, vaccine denial, race, evolution, bioethics, immigration, history and archaeology, climate change, gender, education, fake news and fake imagery, data and knowledge, and political polarization. Two of the events will be moderated by hosts from WHYY; and there are several family-friendly and participatory events including the Museum’s How Do We Know? event, the Critical Engagement with Knowledge Library event, an AI-augmented reality scavenger hunt, a walk through time down Locust Walk (with robot companions), Data Refuge Stories, a Bioethics Film Festival on the promises and perils of technology and a screening of American Creed.

In support of this collective endeavor, we ask that faculty spend a little time in class discussing knowledge and the Academy in the 21st century, and consider exploring the rich and varied topics on view with their classes or giving time and room for students to explore them on their own. And we ask students and staff to explore as many of these topics as they have time and inclination for. The events will be archived on the Teach-In website; many of them will be live-streamed.

In a very large sense, in these troubled times the Teach-In asks us to ruminate collectively on the fundamental questions facing us—where are we and where would we like to go: Quo vadis? We hope to see you at the events.

Tri-Chairs of the Faculty Senate

—Jennifer Pinto-Martin, Chair Elect

—Santosh Venkatesh, Chair

—Laura Perna,  Past Chair

Schedule

Registration is encouraged; for more information, visit http://www.upenn.edu/teachin Update: also check website for rescheduling of canceled events (indicated below).

Sunday, March 18

How Do We Know?: An Afternoon of Learning and Fun in the Penn Museum; 1-5 p.m.; Penn Museum.

Monday, March 19

The Penn Libraries: Critical Engagement with Knowledge; 9 a.m.-5 p.m.; Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

Monument Lab Exhibition: Civic Studio on Public Space; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Addams Hall.

Teaching Race: A Roundtable; 10-11:30 a.m.; Class of 1955 Conference Room, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

Vaccine Denial: A Worldwide Public Health Concern; noon-1:30 p.m.; Rubenstein Auditorium, Smilow Center for Translational Research.

A Walk through Time: Special Artistic Exhibit: The Evolution “Donut” Crawl; 1-5:30 p.m.; Locust Walk.

Firearm Violence: Science, Policy & Politics; 3-4:30 p.m.; Terrace Room, Claudia Cohen Hall.

Teach-In Opening Ceremony: Knowledge Production, Communication & Impact in the 21st Century; 5-6:30 p.m.; Fitts Auditorium, Golkin Hall, Penn Law.

Teach-In Opening Reception: for opening ceremony attendees; 6:30-7 p.m.; Fitts Auditorium, Golkin Hall, Penn Law.

Tuesday, March 20

[RE]ACTION: Empowering the Future Leaders in Design: PennDesign Women in Architecture; all day; Meyerson Hall and Morgan Building.

Monument Lab Exhibition: Civic Studio on Public Space; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Addams Hall.

The Future of Technology: Engineering Human Health; 10:30-11:15 a.m.; Glandt Forum, Singh Center for Nanotechnology.

The Future of Technology: Artificial Intelligence and Society: Stories from the Warren Center; 11:30 a.m.-12:15 p.m.; Glandt Forum, Singh Center for Nanotechnology.

The Future of the Past: Lessons from History; 12:30-2 p.m.; Class of 1955 Conference Room, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

The Knowledge and Practice of Well-Being; 3-4:30 p.m.; Class of 1955 Conference Room, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

Monument Lab Reception: Opening Ceremony; 4-6 p.m.; Addams Hall.

AI: Augmented Reality Scavenger Hunt: A Public Event; 6-8 p.m.; Levine Hall.

[CANCELED] Nudging Women to Run: A Penn Lightbulb Cafe Event; 6-7 p.m.; Upstairs, World Café Live.

The Bride of Frankenstein: Bioethics Film Festival; 5:30-7:45 p.m.; Ibrahim Theater, International House.

Wednesday, March 21

[CANCELED] Monument Lab Exhibition: Civic Studio on Public Space; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Addams Hall.

[CANCELED] Data Refuge Stories: A Public Engagement Project of the Penn Program in Environmental Humanities and Penn Libraries; noon-3 p.m.; multiple locations.

[CANCELED] Developing a Culture of Health: hosted by the Penn Professional Staff Assembly and the Weekly-Paid Professional Staff Assembly; 1-2:30 p.m.; Class of 1978 Orrery Pavilion, Kislak Center, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

[CANCELED] Thinking About Evolution: Science, History, Meaning: A Faculty Panel; 3-4:30 p.m.; Class of 1955 Conference Room, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

[CANCELED] 2018 Evan C Thompson Chair Lecture: Improving Decision Making; Katy Milkman, “Targeting Teaching and Learning”; 3-4:30 p.m.; Class of 1978 Orrery Pavilion, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

[CANCELED] Immigration Town Hall: The Role of the University in Responding to and Shaping Immigration Law and Policy; 5-6:30 p.m.; Fitts Auditorium, Golkin Hall, Penn Law.

[POSTPONED TO 4/4, time/location TBD] Post-Carbon Futures in a Fact-Challenged Present; 5-6:30 p.m.; Class of 1978 Orrery Pavilion, Kislak Center, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

Thursday, March 22

Monument Lab Exhibition: Civic Studio on Public Space; 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; Addams Hall.

Left, Right and Center: Can We Talk about Sexual Harassment?; 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.; Catalyst, GSE, 3440 Market St., 5th floor.

American Creed: Documentary Screening and Discussion; 4-6 p.m.; Class of 1955 Conference Room, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

Purposes of a Penn Education: Student Perspectives; 4:30-5:15 p.m.; Hall of Flags, Houston Hall.

Finale: The University and the Community; 5:15-6 p.m.; Hall of Flags, Houston Hall.

Closing Reception; 6-6:30 p.m.; Hall of Flags, Houston Hall.

Blade Runner-Final Cut (2007): Bioethics Film Festival; 5:30-8:45 p.m.; Ibrahim Theater, International House.

Friday, March 23

Lies, Pixels and Video Fakes; 11 a.m.-12 p.m.; Class of 1955 Conference Room, Van Pelt-Dietrich Library.

Young Frankenstein: Bioethics Film Festival; 5:30-8:30 p.m.; Ibrahim Theater, International House.