Baruch S. Blumberg NASA/Library of Congress Chair in Astrobiology

Baruch S. Blumberg NASA/Library of Congress

Job Type: Museums and Libraries

Application Deadline: December 1, 2014

We write to alert you to a call for proposals for the Baruch S. Blumberg NASA/Library of Congress Chair in Astrobiology.  You are invited to consider applying or to pass this invitation along to a qualified colleague.

A recently-established partnership between NASA’s Astrobiology Program and the Library of Congress, the Blumberg Chair, an annually selected position, supports a senior scholar in the sciences or the humanities to take up residence in the Library’s John W. Kluge Center and conduct research on the humanistic and societal impacts of astrobiology.

Dr. David Grinspoon, the inaugural chair, studied the Anthropocene Era through the lens of astrobiology, asking questions about the future of life on Earth. Dr. Steven Dick, the second chairholder, is investigating how the possible discovery of microbial or complex life in the universe might impact society.

The Astrobiology Chair creates an opportunity to research the range and complexity of societal issues related to how life begins and evolves, and to examine the religious, ethical, legal, cultural and other concerns arising from scientific research on the origin, evolution and nature of life. Possibilities for research subjects are many. The following are meant to inspire, not to limit your creativity: legal issues related to governance of planets and space; the ethical implications of cross-contamination; scientific and philosophical definitions of life; conceptions of the origins of life in theistic and non-theistic religions; comparison of the discussion of these issues in multiple nations and cultures.

Located in the Library’s magnificent Jefferson Building, the Kluge Center offers a rich intellectual atmosphere for informal discussion and exchange of perspectives.

Individuals are welcome to apply directly. For further information please consult the Center’s webpage:  You may also direct questions to Dan Turello: Full applications are due by December 1, 2014.


Posted: September 13, 2014