David Sloan Wilson, SUNY Distinguished Professor of Biology and Anthropology at Binghamton University, will present the annual Jack and Pat Bryan Life Sciences Lecture. Wilson, an evolutionary biologist, will deliver a public lecture on the application of evolutionary concepts to “all aspects of humanity”.
Wilson will deliver a public lecture, “The New Social Darwinism” Wednesday, April 13 in Life Science Complex room 001 at 4 p.m. A reception will follow immediately in the Lundgren Room (106 LSC), where attendees will have the opportunity to speak with Wilson. He will also deliver a second lecture, “Multilevel Selection Theory for the 21st Century,” also on April 13, in the Lundgren Room at noon. Both lectures are free and open to the public.
Wilson’s research uses evolutionary theory to investigate biological topics, including foraging behavior, altruism and the nature of individual differences. He explores these questions in subjects as diverse as microbes, insects and humans.
Wilson engages in multiple endeavors to apply evolutionary theory to concepts outside biology as well. At Binghamton University, he directs EvoS, an interdisciplinary evolutionary studies program featuring involvement from the humanities, life sciences, economics and engineering.
Wilson is also the president of the Evolution Institute, a think tank providing public policy insight from an evolutionary science perspective. The institute formulates recommendations for real-world policy challenges in addition to suggestions for policy concerning basic scientific research.
A prolific author, Wilson’s most recent book is titled “Does Altruism Exist? Culture, Genes, and the Welfare of Others.” In it, he explores the presence and function of altruism in nature, as well as in human societies.
The lectures are co-presented by the Biology Graduate Student Organization and the Department of Biology. Wilson’s visit and lectures are made possible by a generous gift from Pat Bryan in memory of her husband, Jack, a longtime member of the department’s faculty who was deeply committed to graduate education and research.