Founded 1871

Fall 2015 & Spring 2016 Lecture Series

Sponsored by The Policy Studies Organization
In Cooperation with the American Public University
The Policy studies OrganizationAmerican Public University

PSW 2375
Friday, March 24th at 8:00 p.m.

Biological Collections - From Dark Data to a Global, Accessible Digital Resource Documenting Life on Earth

Reed Beaman

  • Program Director
  • Division of Biological Infrastructure
  • Directorate for Biological Sciences
  • National Science Foundation

About the Lecture

For more than 300 years, biologists have documented research by preserving samples, known as voucher specimens, in biological collections. These specimens are the direct evidence for recognition, description, and publication of the millions of species known to science. The basic data and information within collections worldwide underwrite our knowledge about biological diversity, the history of life on earth, molecular and cellular biology, organismic and ecological systems. Our national and international infrastructure of biological collections are a treasure trove of data; but these are dark data, much of which is still hidden away in the physical archives.

For more information about this upcoming lecture...

Biological Collections




The Lectures, which are the centerpiece of all Philosophical Society of Washington meetings, are selected to appeal to those with a general interest in science and do not require a specialized knowledge of the subject. They always contain information that is current, explanations that are understandable and a few controversial issues to be challenged by a critical listener. The series is designed as much as possible to include a wide range of disciplines.

The meetings are open to the public, free, and no reservations are required. Dress is informal. Meetings are followed by lively conversation. All must exit the Cosmos Club at 10:30 p.m. Conversations are continued at another location. Please note, there is no parking at the Cosmos Club.

Meeting Location

The John Wesley Powell Auditorium is adjacent to the Cosmos Club, 2170 Florida Avenue NW, Washington DC 20008. Entrance is through the club gate, the first right-hand entrance on Florida Avenue north of the intersection with Massachusetts Avenue NW. The auditorium entrance is to the left of the gate.

The Cosmos Club is within walking distance of the DuPont Circle Metro stop (Q Street exit), the Connecticut Avenue bus routes (L2, L4), and the Massachusetts Avenue bus routes (N2, N4).


Title Name
President Larry S. Millstein
Treasurer John Ingersoll
Program Chair Larry S. Millstein
Membership Chair James Garay Heelan
Corresponding Secretary Robin Taylor