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Tim Beach, Centennial Professor of Geography and Environment at UT Austin, presented an invited lecture on “Societal Collapses from the Maya to Mesopotamia and Beyond” at the Vatican in a workshop on Biological Extinction sponsored by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences. His talk included discussions of extinctions in soil ecology and used the lenses of soil and sediments to view and understand the complexity of cultural transitions from the Pleistocene to present, focusing on Maya history.  The workshop, held Feb. 27-Mar. 1, 2017, included world leaders in multiple fields from around the world. Learn more.

Farhana Sultana, associate professor of geography at the Maxwell School, presented at “The Human Right to Water” workshop, also hosted by the Pontifical Academy of Sciences, in Vatican City on Feb. 23-24, 2017. She was one of the several international researchers, humanitarian workers, government officials and corporate leaders invited to present and debate issues about water insecurity and ongoing global efforts to ensure access to clean water. Learn more.