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Fall 2021 Petri Dish Series

petri dish background with words "Be part of the experiment | Petri Dish Fall 2021" in white lettering in foreground

Join for two lively conversations this fall! The events will be held virtually.

October 27 | 6 - 7:30 p.m. CT

Concrete and canopy: Urban nature in the spotlight

Think nature and chances are that the landscapes that come to mind are far removed from city life. Yet nature not only exists in urban spaces but has a multitude of impacts on people. A new long-term ecological research program based in the Twin Cities promises to expand our understanding of how the natural world persists in urban settings. Our panelists will discuss the often invisible role urban nature plays in our daily lives and what they hope to learn going forward.

Panelists Include


Free to attend. You will receive the Zoom link to join in a confirmation e-mail

November 17 | 6 - 7:30 p.m. CT

Back to the beginning: Investigating the origin of life

The origin of life, or abiogenesis, is a profound and challenging problem for scientists, in part because we only have evidence of it ever happening once in the known universe. Understanding abiogenesis is key to understanding not only how life arose on Earth, but also why we so far seem alone in our expansive universe. But how do you study the means by which life may or may not have started? Join us for a conversation about what we know and what it means for expanding our understanding of this elusive topic.

Panelists Include:


Free to attend. You can join via Zoom at

About the series 

The Petri Dish explores how biology affects our lives and what it means for our future. No PowerPoints. Just lively, curiosity-driven conversations on timely topics with University of Minnesota experts.

The series is hosted in collaboration with the Bell Museum.

September, 2021