Mark Aldenderfer, dean of the UC Merced School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts, will speak this weekend as a guest lecturer at Kshitij, the annual “techno-management fest” of the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur.
IIT Kharagpur, the oldest and largest of the Indian Institutes of Technology, is ranked among the best engineering institutions in the world, and its annual Kshitij gathers students, academics and industry leaders for a series of competitions, guest lectures and workshops featuring some of the world’s leading tech companies.
While the focus of Kshitij — which will run from Jan. 30 to Feb. 2 — lies in technology and business, the event typically reaches beyond those fields for a guest lecturer of uncommon intrigue. Aldenderfer, an anthropological archaeologist who has been featured in National Geographic for his research on the cave people of the high Himalayas, fit the bill.
“I’m quite honored to have been asked to speak at this event,” he said. “It’s always great to have an opportunity to speak to a large and enthusiastic audience outside my own discipline.”
In his presentation, Aldenderfer will focus on the intersection of adventure and science in the world’s high places and will illustrate his research over the course of his career in Ethiopia, the Andes and the Himalayas. He’ll return to Nepal to continue that research later this year.
Aldenderfer’s lecture, “Adventure Meets Science: Doing Archaeology in the World’s high places,” is scheduled for Sunday, Feb. 1, and should be available online after the event.