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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 8:28 EDT

Latest Smithsonian Institution Stories

2011-04-04 15:15:00

New Series Will Provide Safe Political Space for Important Discussions WASHINGTON, April 4, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars has announced a new initiative launching April 8, 2011: The National Conversation at the Woodrow Wilson Center. The National Conversation will examine overarching themes of U.S. international and domestic policy, drawing on high-profile guests and experts from all sides of the political sphere to provide thoughtful,...

2011-03-25 11:56:09

In 1964 biologist William Hamilton introduced Inclusive Fitness Theory to predict and explain phenomena ranging from animal behavior to patterns of gene expression. With its many successes, the theory became a cornerstone for modern biology. In August, 2010, Harvard researchers challenged the theory in the prestigious journal, Nature. Now Nature has published sharp rebuttals from scores of scientists, including Edward Allen Herre and William Wcislo, staff scientists at the Smithsonian...

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2011-03-21 05:55:00

The Smithsonian's Museum of Natural History in Washington has paid $10,000 to two Lorton Virginia doctors a year after a meteorite crashed through the roof and landed in the examination room of their practice, AP is reporting. The doctors, Marc Gallini and Frank Ciampi, were in a legal dispute with the landlord of the property since the tennis ball-sized meteorite found its way into the office in the early evening of January 18, 2010. The meteorite landed near where Gallini had been sitting...

2011-03-11 14:07:00

WASHINGTON, March 11, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian hosts filmmakers Zacharias Kunuk and Ian Mauro for the U.S. premiere of Qapirangajuq: Inuit Knowledge and Climate Change--the world's first Inuktitut-language documentary on the topic--Sunday, March 27, at 2 p.m. in the museum's Rasmuson Theater. This groundbreaking documentary captures the voices of those who are often overlooked in the discussion on climate change: the...

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2011-03-08 11:40:00

Space shuttle Discovery's crew received the first-ever live wake-up call in the history of the shuttle program Tuesday as it heads home to Earth after completing its final mission. The shuttle is scheduled to land on Earth Wednesday for the last time, ending its 27-year flying career. NASA will spend months decommissioning Discovery, then send it to the Smithsonian Institution to live out its days. The crew awoke to a live music performance on Tuesday morning for the first time in NASA's...

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2011-03-05 11:12:13

Oregon, Smithsonian-led team uncovers numerous artifacts at late Pleistocene sites on the Channel IslandsEvidence for a diversified sea-based economy among North American inhabitants dating from 12,200 to 11,400 years ago is emerging from three sites on California's Channel Islands.Reporting in the March 4 issue of Science, a 15-member team led by University of Oregon and Smithsonian Institution scholars describes the discovery of scores of stemmed projectile points and crescents dating to...

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2011-02-28 07:51:14

Researching animals in the wild can be challenging, especially if it involves a rare or elusive species like the giant panda or the clouded leopard. To remedy this, scientists rely heavily on camera traps"”automated cameras with motion sensors. Left to photograph what passes in front of them, the cameras record the diversity and very often the behavior of animals around the world. The Smithsonian has brought together more than 202,000 wildlife photos from seven projects conducted by...

2011-02-18 14:39:00

WASHINGTON, Feb. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Nobel laureate Sir John Sulston is chairing a new effort by the United Kingdom's Royal Society to study the impact of population dynamics on sustainable development. To be completed in early 2012, the "People and the Planet" study will analyze how population variables such as growth, aging, migration, and urbanization will affect--and be affected by--economies, environments, societies, and cultures over the next 40 years and beyond....

2011-02-18 09:01:00

New report explores escalating confrontation over resources with global implications WASHINGTON, Feb. 18, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Rapid economic growth, water scarcity, and soaring energy demand are forming a tightening noose that could choke off China's modernization, according to a new report by Circle of Blue and the Woodrow Wilson Center's China Environment Forum (CEF) that began online publication this week. The 12-part series, Choke Point: China presents powerful evidence...

2011-02-14 15:11:48

A million-dollar question Sleeping Beauty's kingdom was overgrown by vines when she fell into a deep sleep. Researchers at the Smithsonian in Panama and the University of Wisconsin at Milwaukee received more than a million dollars from the U.S. National Science Foundation to discover why real vines are overtaking the American tropics. Data from eight sites show that vines are overgrowing trees in all cases. "We are witnessing a fundamental structural change in the physical make-up of forests...