What's Pugwash?

In 1955, Bertrand Russell, Albert Einstein, and several other eminent scientists signed a manifesto urging scientists to think in a new way about the implications of their work. Russell wrote this manifesto in response to the threat of the newly developed hydrogen bomb which he feared would have catastrophic effects. Two years later, the first World Conference was held in Pugwash, Nova Scotia, where many concerned scientists and politicians could meet to discuss such critical issues. The Pugwash Conferences on Science and World Affairs received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1995 for their profound impact on nuclear non-proliferation and their peaceful influence during the Cold War.

What do we do?

"Pugwash Presents" Lecture Series

Join us weekly to hear a Purdue professor talk about new scientific research and possible social implications. Details about the current semester's dates are available on the calendar.

Small Group Discussions

Held once a month to discuss hot-topic issues in a more intimate setting than the lecture series. The discussion topics will remain TBA until a week or so before each event. This allows us the opportunity to find very current events, articles, or videos for discussion. Please check the calendar as the date approaches to find out about the upcoming discussion topic or subscribe to our mailing list if you'd like to get updates as they become available


Our annual conference is held in the early spring. Past year's themes have been "Scientific Integrity in the 21st Century", "Space and Society: Challenges and Opportunities", "Energy & the Environment: Powering the Future Responsibly", "Health Care & Humanity: Solutions for Today and Tomorrow", and "Our Technological Future: Problems, Perils, and Promises".

Behind-the-Scenes Tours

We try to take 2-3 tours of various campus facilities per semester. We sometimes re-visit our favorite past destinations for newer members. Past tours have included Wade power plant, PUR-1 nuclear reactor, PRIME lab, the Birck Nanotechnology Center, and the small animal hospital.

Movie Events

Usually we host one special movie event per academic year. These events include a free showing of a recent controversial film, followed by discussion and questions with a panel of local experts. Previous film choices have included "Last Best Chance", "An Inconvenient Truth", "Sicko", and "The Future of Food".

Member Socials

Socials events are held 2-3 times per semester. These events offer a fun opportunity for members to get together casually. Previous socials have ranged from bowling, to cookouts, to dinner and a movie events, and ice skating.


Interested in becoming a member?

Purdue Student Pugwash charges $20 yearly dues to become a member. Not only does this money support our regular scheduled events, it also gets you some nice goodies. As a new member you'll receive:

  • Purdue Pugwash t-shirt, lanyard, and membership folder
  • Registration to our spring conference
  • Access to behind-the-scenes tours and social events
  • Networking opportunities at our events
  • Leadership opportunity to serve on our executive board

Pugwash accepts members year-round. To sign up or to pay your dues, either talk to a member of the board at one of our events or come see us during office hours. We also have a student organization mailbox located in the locker bay on the ground floor of Stewart Center. If you just need to drop off dues and don't want to see us face to face, then you can simply drop your $20 (enclosed in an envelope labeled with your name and Pugwash) into this convenient mailbox.