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Keynote & Plenaries

Plenaries and Panels

#AGU20 features an exciting array of plenary talks and panels covering a diverse range of Earth and space science and science-society topics. World-leading scientists and administrators will speak about shaping the future of science -- from public-science efforts to highlighting how to expand diversity, equity and inclusion, from the future of universities to new areas of convergent science -- and about the development of AGU’s new strategic plan. Return to this page for even more speaker announcements as the meeting approaches.

Presidential Forum Lecture: Leland Melvin

Leland Melvin

Join two-time Space Shuttle Atlantis mission specialist Leland Melvin as he shares his inspirational story of achievement -- from college football to NASA astronaut to STEAM advocate.


Featured Plenary: Dr. Rita Colwell

Rita Cowell

Explore the successes of Dr. Rita Colwell, author of more than 800 scientific publications in the areas of global infectious diseases, water and health.


Agency Lecture: Sethuraman Panchanathan

Sethuraman Panchanathan

Join NSF Director Sethuraman Panchanathan as he shares insights from his distinguished career in both higher education and government.


Plenary Panel: The Solution Space:
Finding Sustainable Pathways for the Amazon

Brazilian savannah

Hear from panelists on the urgency of action needed to build a new vision of sustainable development for the Amazon.


Community Science Plenary: John Fitzpatrick

John Fitzpatrick thumbnail

Explore the application of community science principles to the study and appreciation of birds with John Fitzpatrick, noted ornithologist and executive director of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.


Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion from an International AGU Perspective: A Panel Discussion of a Global Issue from a Non-U.S. World View

Rock formation shining under a galaxy of stars

Explore international perspectives on inclusive science priorities with a global panel as AGU works to adopt a strategic goal of diversity, inclusion, equity, ethics and cultural awareness in all our activities.


Frontiers of Geophysics Lecture: Hearts in the Ice

Hearts in the Ice

Hear directly from two "polar ambassadors," living 140km away from civilization but engaging students, scientists and industry with their story about the health of our planet.


Featured Plenary: Dr. Freeman Hrabowski

Freeman Hrabowski

Learn from Dr. Freeman Hrabowski, a passionate advocate for inclusive excellence and STEM at UMBC, where he has served as president since 1992.


Featured Plenary: Howard Frumkin

Leland Melvin

Hear from Howard Frumkin, internist and epidemiologist, as he shares from his long career examining the public health aspects of the built environment.


Featured Plenary: Andrea Wulf

Andrea Wulf headshot

Revisit the tremendous accomplishments of Alexander von Humboldt with award-winning author Andrea Wulf, author of two recent books on the German naturalist and explorer.


Plenary Panel: Toxic Ivory Towers and Conversations with Underrepresented Voices

Kendall Moore thumbnail

Join filmmaker and professor Kendall Moore to discuss her insightful and award-winning work exploring the issue of ‘social belonging’ in the context of STEM.