UC Santa Barbara will bring some of the world's great minds to the campus to explore contemporary societal issues of national and international significance through a Distinguished Dialogue Series established by a gift from The Arthur N. Rupe Foundation, of Santa Barbara.
In making the $400,000 contribution, Arthur N. Rupe, chair of the foundation, said, "Let us bring the great thinkers of our time together at UCSB and provide a forum to discuss and debate the nation's and world's vital questions."
The series of public lectures, debates, and dialogues will be launched next Spring and coordinated by the campus' Interdisciplinary Humanities Center.
Potential topics include medical ethics, international politics, education, the arts, religion and public life, the environment, the economy, communication, and social issues.
Nobel laureates will also be invited to UCSB to present autobiographical lectures.
In conjunction with the programs, special undergraduate honors seminars and related course work will be offered.
"The Arthur N. Rupe Distinguished Dialogue Series aims to create stimulating and provocative dialogue on important contemporary issues," said Everett Zimmerman, provost of the College of Letters and Science.
"It is certain to be an exciting part of the campus's intellectual life.
We also hope that it will become an identifiable part of the intellectual life of the community and the nation."
The Rupe Foundation has been a generous benefactor of UCSB.
In 1998, the foundation established the Arthur N. Rupe Chair in the Social Effects of Mass Communication at the university.