World Science Festival produces original live and digital content that brings scientific discovery, insight and perspective to a broad general audience. Our flagship live event returns to New York City May 22-June 2, 2019. Now in its 12th year, it is an unprecedented annual tribute to imagination, ingenuity and inventiveness. Through programming that spans a broad range—from vibrant discussions and debates to works of theatre and film—world-class scientists, leading thinkers, and renowned artists take science out of the laboratory and into the streets, theaters, museums, and public halls of New York City, making the esoteric understandable and the familiar fascinating. The week-long New York Festival has drawn more than 2.5 million visitors since its launch in 2008, with millions more viewing the programs online.

More information about World Science Festival can be found here:


WSF: We Will Be Martians  

Wed, May 29, 8PM

There is little doubt that Mars will be the next step in our continuing march to the skies, with some predicting we will take that giant leap within the next decade. Who among us will be the intrepid explorers to settle Mars? How will they survive on that barren world? What will life be like for the first human Martians? As the world celebrates the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, join us for a wondrous journey guided by a crew of experts who will explore the challenges—technological, physiological, and psychological—of sending humans to Mars. And as we set foot on that neighboring world, experience the red planet through full 3D imagery—mountains, plateaus, crevices, and caves—that some of us will one day call home.

Loose Ends  

Thu, May 30, 8PM

Thirty-five years ago string theory took physics by storm, promising the coveted unified theory of nature’s forces that Einstein valiantly sought but never found. In the intervening decades, string theory has brought a collection of mind-boggling possibilities into the lexicon of mainstream thinking—extra dimensions of space, holographic worlds, and multiple universes. Some researchers view these developments as symptoms of string theory having lost its way. Others argue that string theory, although very much still a work in progress, is revealing stunning new qualities of reality. Join leading minds in theoretical physics for a whirlwind ride through the twists and turns of string theory—its past, its future, and what it tells us about the search for the universe’s final theory.

WSF: The Right Stuff  

Fri, May 31, 7PM 

Fifty years ago, as Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin bounced on the moon’s surface below, Apollo 11 Command Module Pilot Michael Collins briefly disappeared behind the lunar disk, becoming the first person to experience space entirely alone. As we set our sights on the stars, space travelers will need to cope with ever longer stretches—months, years, and beyond—in the lonely environs of the cosmos. What will that take? What will that be like? How will it affect who we are? Join Michael Collins and fellow astronauts for a whirlwind journey boldly going where only a handful of humans have gone before.

Cool Jobs  

Sat, Jun 1, 12PM

Meet the coolest group of scientists with the most fascinating jobs on the planet. You’ll hear from an engineer who studies geckos to find an adhesive that can hold tons of material to the wall, a biologist who figured out why tiny brained ants travel efficiently while big-brained humans get stuck in traffic jams, and a concert-trained pianist who became a scientist to learn why some music makes you dance and other music makes you cry. They’ll tell you first hand about their spectacular journeys to figure out how the world works and much more. Join us to start your own quest to find a Cool Science Job.

Rethinking Thinking  

Sat, Jun 1, 4PM

Intelligence was once thought to be uniquely human. But researchers have discovered astonishing cognitive abilities in many other species—not just our close cousins like chimps, or fellow mammals like dolphins—but also crows, parrots, and even octopuses. If we consider the intelligence of swarms, we must add bees, termites, and ants to the list of super smart creatures. Join the scientists who study smarts as we ask: What is intelligence? Why do some species get an extra dose? And just how special are humans, really?

The Richness of Time  

Sat, Jun 1, 8PM

Join a physicist, a neuroscientist, and a linguist as they explore the deep enigmas of time. Time feels like it flows, but does it? Time seems to have a built-in direction, from past to future, but is that real or merely a quality imposed by the human brain? Time on earth elapses at a uniform rate, so why does the human experience of time seem so varied? How do various neurological afflictions change the perception of time? And underneath it all, how does human language impact our ability to think about time and fully experience its rich and mysterious contours?

Visit for the full schedule of events taking place around the city May 22-June 2, 2019.