Image - Commonwealth Club logo
Past Event

Walter Alvarez: A Most Improbable Journey

One in a million doesn’t even come close.

Not when we’re talking about the odds that you would happen to be alive today, on this particular planet, hurtling through space. Almost 14 billion years of cosmic history, more than 4 billion years of Earth history, and a couple million years of human history, has led to you.

This panoramic viewpoint has captured the imagination of historians and scientists alike, and together they’ve created a new field—big history—that studies the entire known past of our universe to give context to our very existence.

Famed geologist Alvarez is best known for the impact theory explaining dinosaur extinction. His unique expertise and infectious curiosity gives us a new appreciation for the incredible occurrences—from the Big Bang and beyond—that have led to our improbable place in the universe.


In association with Wonderfest; photo by Steve Dutch

January 24, 2017

Cubberley Community Theatre
4000 Middlefield Road
Palo Alto, 94303
United States

Image - Walter Alvarez

Walter Alvarez

Professor, Earth and Planetary Science Department, University of California, Berkeley; Author, A Most Improbable Journey: A Big History of Our Planet and Ourselves

Lisa Krieger

Science and Research Reporter, San Jose Mercury News—Moderator