Cafe Scientifique

On the second Tuesday of each month, the Science Center of Iowa invites the community to join the conversation!

Café Scientifique is a FREE science-based program for adults and young adults. Each event begins with an introduction and background of the topic by the featured presenter and concludes with an open forum for questions and discussion.

"Café Sci" events are happening all over the world – with leaders in science and technology engaging audiences in discussion around meaningful and relevant topics in an informal setting.

Café Sci events take place on the second Tuesday of each month from 5:30-7:00 pm. Locations vary.

Mark your calendar for these upcoming Cafe Sci events:

  • October 20, 6:00-8:00 pm - Special Cafe Scientifique: Should We Edit the Human Genome
    Science Center of Iowa, 401 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway

    Synthetic biology: It’s a field of amazing possibilities coupled with profound ethical dilemmas, rooted in a single question… Should we modify the human genome?

    Join us as we explore the complex implications of synthetic biology, and discover what genome modification means for the future of human health, business, agriculture and more. This interactive event invites you to discover real-world ramifications of synthetic biology through roleplaying scenarios and discussion.

    This special Café Scientifique is part of series of nationwide “Building with Biology Forums” supported by the National Science Foundation to provide an opportunity to engage in thoughtful conversations with scientists about important issues regarding the potential societal and ethical implications of synthetic biology.

    This event is free and open to the public. RSVP is encouraged to

  • November 1 - Nitrogen: Streams, Society & Statewide Impact
    Location: Science Center of Iowa, 401 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway
    Presenter: Dr. Peter Levi, assistant professor of environmental science and policy, Drake University

    Like all 92 naturally occurring elements in the periodic table, nitrogen’s story weaves its way through history, from its natural roots to its role as a catalyst for technological advancements, as well as innovations in food production. But the same properties that make nitrogen a necessity for human life can make it detrimental, damaging aquatic ecosystems.

    Join us as we explore the delicate relationship between nitrogen’s necessity and the societal implications of excess nitrogen on ourselves and our landscapes.
  • December 13 - Puzzling Particles & Quantum Physics
    Science Center of Iowa, 401 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway
    Dr. Braxton Pulley, chiropractor at East Village Chiropractic

    Objects vanish and suddenly reappear. Teleportation transports us instantly to other worlds. Things exist in two places at once.

    They’re all marvels of quantum physics, the quasi-magical field that explores how particles and atoms defy our everyday expectations. Join us as we explore the basics of this fascinating field through classic science exercises, and discover the surreal happenings that are all around you.

RSVP encouraged to

About Cafe Sci:

  • Events are free to the general public; Coffee, beverages or appetizers are usually available for purchase
  • Many events are held off-site at restaurants, cafes and other venues
  • No scientific background is necessary, just an interest in the topic at hand
  • All ages are welcome but content is geared for adults and young adults
  • Click here for a library of previous Cafe Sci events

Interested in presenting a topic or hosting an event? Inquire at or (515) 274-6868 ext. 234