Living Up To Our Name

Dear Wonderfest friend,

As "the Bay Area Beacon of Science," Wonderfest is charged with illuminating a great deal of geographic and intellectual territory!  Let's see if Wonderfest is living up to its ambitious new subtitle. 

On March 2, Wonderfest joins the Stanford Chemistry Department in presenting Does Corporate Funding Corrupt Science?  When corporate money supports research, is truth the ultimate goal, or is stockholder profit? The tobacco industry seems to offer a potent example of "private" science gone awry. Can we establish general conditions of research funding under which truth always triumphs?


Here is the group of outstanding scholars that Wonderfest has assembled for this panel discussion: (Respective areas of expertise appear in parentheses.)

  • Lisa Bero, Professor of Health Policy, UCSF  (pharmaceuticals)
  • Hank Greely, Professor of Law, Stanford  (biomedicine)
  • Dave Patterson, Professor of Computer Science, UC Berkeley  (software)
  • Robert Proctor, Professor of History, Stanford  (tobacco)
  • Richard Zare, Professor of Chemistry, Stanford  (chemistry)

For more information and for speaker biographies, please see this page

Next, on April 18, Wonderfest joins Ask a Scientist in San Francisco to explore one of the most profound questions in science: Whence Consciousness? UC Berkeley neuroscientist and anthropology department chair Terrence Deacon will present Incomplete Nature: How Mind Emerged from Matter. 

Then, on May 9, Wonderfest collaborates with the Bay Area Skeptics to present Magnetic Medical Mayhem?, a Berkeley “Skeptalk” on the alleged health effects of electromagnetic radiation emitted by cell phones, power lines, and smart meters.
And on June 23, Wonderfest finally brings back its rained-out contribution to last November’s Bay Area Science Festival.  We again join with the Mt. Tamalpais Astronomy Program at Marin’s Mountain Theater to present The Milky Way as a Dark Matter Laboratory.
(Of course, you can keep an eye on all Wonderfest event developments at  Another fun option is to sign up as a Wondernaut at our new page; in just ten days, wonderfest has “met-up” with some 70 new Bay Area admirers!)
To summarize…  Look what’s coming: science funding, consciousness, EMF health effects, and dark matter; collaboration with Stanford, Ask a Scientist, Bay Area Skeptics, and Mt. Tam Astronomy. These intriguing presentations happen—one per month—in four different Bay Area regions: peninsula, SF, east bay, and north bay.  Evidently, the Bay Area Beacon of Science is shining brightly and widely!
Wondrous regards,
Tucker Hiatt
Founder & Executive Director
P.S. With its newly confirmed 501(c)(3) designation from the IRS, Wonderfest has become a fully tax-exempt, independent, nonprofit corporation.  Already, Wonderfest has received an encouraging donation from the Harold F. and Suzanne D. Falk Foundation.  I *wonder* if other friends of Wonderfest (see salutation, above!) are excited about such tax-saving opportunities to support the Bay Area Beacon of Science.  😉