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Who We Are: Steven Dick

Dr. Steven J. Dick is a member of the International Academy of Astronautics and its SETI Permanent Study Group. He obtained his B.S. in astrophysics (1971), and MA and PhD (1977) in history and philosophy of science from Indiana University. He worked as an astronomer and historian of science at the U. S. Naval Observatory in Washington, D.C. for 24 years before coming to NASA Headquarters to serve as its Chief Historian from 2003 until his retirement in 2009. Among his books are Plurality of Worlds: The Origins of the Extraterrestrial Life Debate from Democritus to Kant (1982), The Biological Universe: The Twentieth Century Extraterrestrial Life Debate and the Limits of Science (Cambridge University Press, 1996), and Life on Other Worlds (1998). His most recent books are (with James Strick) The Living Universe: NASA and the Development of Astrobiology (2004), and a comprehensive history of the U. S. Naval Observatory, Sky and Ocean Joined: The U. S. Naval Observatory, 1830-2000 (2003). He is also editor of Many Worlds: The New Universe, Extraterrestrial Life and the Theological Implications (2000), and (with Keith Cowing) Risk and Exploration: Earth, Sea and Stars, NASA SP-2005-4701 (Washington, D.C., 2005). His latest books are an edited volume (with Roger Launius) on Critical Issues in the History of Spaceflight (NASA SP-4702, 2006), and Societal Impact of Spaceflight, also edited with Roger Launius (2007). Steve has served as Chairman of the Historical Astronomy Division of the American Astronomical Society, as President of the History of Astronomy Commission of the International Astronomical Union, and as President of the Philosophical Society of Washington. He delivered the very first Billingham Cutting-Edge Lecture at the 2006 International Astronautical Congress in Valencia, Spain. Steven Dick

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