Popular UD Land and Sea series returns to Lewes on Fridays
Ralph Begleiter
Willett Kempton
David Wilson
Ed Ratledge


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3:55 p.m., Feb. 23, 2011----The University of Delaware's popular Land and Sea Lecture Series will present four stimulating morning discussions on topics ranging from political communication to the technology and economics of offshore wind, beginning in March on the Hugh R. Sharp Campus in Lewes.

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“Now in its 26th year, the series has a proud tradition of presenting some of the University's best minds on important and timely topics,” said F. Gary Simpson, assistant director of University Relations at UD and the organizer of the series. “This year, talks will cover political communication, the technology and economics of offshore wind, public opinion in Delaware and future demographic and economic trends in Sussex County. “

The free public lectures will begin at 10 a.m., Fridays, March 4-April 1, in the Virden Center on the Sharp Campus.

Opening the series on March 4 will be a talk on “Political Communication and the New Media” by Ralph Begleiter, director of UD's Center for Political Communication and former world affairs correspondent for CNN. The advent of social media is changing political discourse in this country and around the world. New outlets encourage the rapid spread of political points of view among citizens. These new developments and the changing face of traditional media are altering how we choose leaders and determine public policy. Begleiter is the Edward F. and Elizabeth Goodman Rosenberg Professor of Communication and Distinguished Journalist in Residence at the University.

On March 11, Willett Kempton, director of UD's Center for Carbon-free Power Integration, will discuss “Offshore Wind: Technology and Economics.” Offshore wind could be a significant domestic energy source. This lecture will describe the industrial expansion required to meet U.S. Department of Energy goals of 10,000 MW by 2020, and 54,000 MW by 2030. Are these goals realistic? How can they be reached? Kempton also serves as a professor in the School of Marine Science and Policy, the Department of Electrical and Computing Engineering and the School of Public Policy and Administration.

“Political Climate and Public Opinion in Delaware: Election 2010” will be the subject of a presentation on March 25 by David C. Wilson, assistant professor of political science and international relations and of Black American Studies. During the 2010 mid-term elections, Delaware was once again the epicenter of politics. Wilson has tracked the political climate and public opinions in the state and will share his analysis of exit polls, the Delaware electorate, and never-before-released data of his 2010 statewide pre-post election surveys.

Concluding the series on April 1 will be Ed Ratledge, director of UD's Center for Applied Demography and Survey Research. His topic will be “Current and Future Demographic and Economic Trends in Delaware with an Emphasis on Sussex County.” Ratledge is a key source for anyone who needs to know numbers on Delaware's growth, housing, economy, employment rates and shifts in political affiliation. He's been calling Delaware's future accurately for more than 30 years. Ratledge is also an associate professor in the School of Public Policy and Administration.

The Land and Sea Lecture series is sponsored by UD's Office of University Relations.