Lecture Series

IRIS NRC hosts or co-sponsors virtual, in-person, or hybrid lectures each semester on global themes of interest to UW faculty, staff, and students. Topics for lectures are identified by campus partners or other IRIS centers.

Upcoming Lecture Series Events

There are no upcoming events.

Spring 2021: CALS Global Conversations Series

College of Agricultural & Life Sciences (CALS) Global Conversations Series

January Theme: Feeding the World


Claudia Irene Calderon: Agroecology for a sustainable and more inclusive food system in the western highlands of Guatemala

Shawn Steffan: Food web ecology at UW-Madison: Fruitful collaborations across continents

Michel Wattiaux: Dairying in Mexico: From smallholder to family farms, and “factory” farms

March Theme: Strengthening Economies and Communities


Shelby Ellison: Hemp as a specialty crop in Israel, Poland, Romania, Canada, and France

Nan Enstad: Tobacco and racial capitalism in China

Paul Dower: Kinship and Economic Performance in Kyrgyzstan

Monthly one-hour talks featuring CALS faculty and staff sharing their international research and development work.

The series will serve as a catalyst for conversation around international collaborations, opportunities, and community-building within CALS, UW-Madison, and beyond.

February Theme: Responding to Climate Change


Nan Li: Visual communication and climate change in China

Jake Brunkard: The future of agriculture: Evolution of plant metabolism in Australia and South Africa

Min Chen: Remote sensing and global change

April Theme: Ensuring Health for All


Francisco Peñagaricano: Improving dairy cow production in Ethiopia: Synergistic effects of feed, management, and genetics

Erica Majumder: Challenges and strategies for microplastics in the environment

Fall 2020: Human Rights Speaker Series

“Addressing the Challenge of Coloniality in the Promises of Modernity and Cosmopolitanism to Higher Education”

Speaker: Professor Jose Cossa, Pennsylvania State University.

Description: In this talk, Professor Cossa critiques the modernist and cosmopolitan foundations of Western higher education, which ignore coloniality and limit critical thinking. He calls for efforts to de-border, de-center, and decolonize in global universities.

“Human Rights Education with Professor Monisha Bajaj”

Speaker: Professor Monisha Bajaj, University of San Francisco

Description: Human rights education is a global movement to address basic rights and broaden the respect for the dignity and freedom of all peoples through formal and non-formal education. In this talk, drawing on her two decades of experience as a scholar and practitioner, Professor Monisha Bajaj will discuss her recent books on the politics and possibilities of human rights education.

The Back 40 Mine: A Conversation about Menominee Rights”

Speaker: Anahkwet (Guy Reiter), Executive Director of Menikanaehkem Inc.

Description: The Back Forty Mine project is a proposed open pit metallic sulfide mine located on the banks of the Menominee River in Lake Township, Michigan. Aquila Resources Inc. (TSX: AQA) (“Aquila”), a Canadian development stage company, is actively seeking the necessary approvals to mine and process gold, zinc, copper, silver and other minerals at the site. The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality (MDEQ) has approved three of the four required permits for the project. The Menominee Nation and many allies including local citizens, local governments, environmental organizations, and grassroots organizations oppose the mine. This presentation initiates a conversation about how environmental politics and indigenous rights intersect with projects like the Back Forty Mine.

“Refugee Youth, Citizenship Education and Exclusion from Public Schooling”

Speaker: Professor Sally Bonet, Colgate University

Description: In this talk, which draws on a three year, multi-sited, multilingual ethnographic study with recently resettled Iraqi refugee families in Philadelphia, Dr. Sally Wesley Bonet examines the relationship between educational exclusion and the production of refugee youth as (non)citizens, suggesting that staging interventions to improve their lives necessitates a thoughtful reevaluation of educational policy and practices.