CAS Inquire series on sustainable futures continues Oct. 10 with van Roojen

Photo Credit: Mark van Roojen
September 25, 2023

Mark van Roojen, professor in the Department of Philosophy, will give the talk "Using What You Know to Filter Through Climate Controversy" on Oct. 10 at 5:30 p.m. in the City Union's Swanson Auditorium. The event is free and open to the public and will be livestreamed on Zoom. Register for the Zoom event at

His talk continues this academic year's CAS Inquire series, "Sustainable Futures." From the summary:

Most of us are able to assess expert testimony in domains of interest using the background knowledge we have due to our interest. With sufficiently good background information we can do this in most fields, even those where there is much controversy. Most of us in fact know enough to do this even when it comes to human caused climate change, whether we realize it or not. This should put us in a position to see that the theory fits well with relatively basic scientific knowledge, and also to understand how climate modeling can represent reality even while it isn't perfect.

Geographer Patrick Bitterman opened the series on September 12, and three additional talks scheduled throughout the academic year will come from faculty members in physics, French, and geology. A panel discussion with the speakers in March of 2024 will cap the series.

Students in the CAS Inquire program connect with college thought leaders and other inquisitive students to discuss ideas, using a college-wide series of public lectures as a focal point. The series launched in September of 2019, and themes have included the rise of the machines, finding common ground, and pain and pleasure.

During the three-year program, CAS Inquire students take specialized courses, help with facilitating the program, and enjoy additional benefits. They can apply, or be nominated by faculty, for the program as freshmen.