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Megan Urry's "Women in Science" and "Black Holes, Galaxies & the Evolution of the Universe"

Meg Urry is the Israel Munson Professor of Physics and Astronomy and Director of the Yale Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics, and served as Chair of the Physics Department at Yale from 2007 to 2013. For ELIS 2015, Prof. Megan Urry delivered two plenary talks, 'Women in Science', and ‘Black Holes, Galaxies & the Evolution of the Universe’.

In 'Women in Science', Prof. Urry debunked some of the most commonly held misperceptions about women and science, and emphasized how encouraging greater role of women in the STEM field would be doing well by doing good, counteracting some of the cognitive biases resulting from the skewed demographics of the field. By examining the biases at work that creates such gender imbalance in the field of sciences, Prof. Urry seeked to provide some guidance for navigating the sciences field as a woman.

In the latter talk: ‘Black Holes, Galaxies & the Evolution of the Universe’, she covered nothing less than the evolution of the Universe over the last 13 billion years. Supermassive black holes form at the center of galaxies and they grow in mass almost concurrently along with their host galaxies by factor of a million or more. Her research group study these supermassive black holes to better understand how the Universe evolved over the years.

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