The Elegant Universe

September 10th, 2000 - January 31st, 2005 | PROJECT

WGBH is producing a three-hour television series about the scientific quest for a unified set of laws governing the universe. The programs, to be broadcast as part of the on-going NOVA series, will place special emphasis on the new development in physics known as string theory. Inspired by Columbia University physicist Brian Greene's best-selling book of the same name, "The Elegant Universe" will explore the ways in which our understanding of matter and forces, space and time have shifted over the years, most recently with the emergence of string theory in the 1980s and its resurgence in the last five years. Greene will play a prominent role in the series, both on camera and as a consultant helping the producers shape the programs. The series, planned for broadcast in the fall of 2002, will communicate critical scientific concepts through filmed experiments, carefully crafted explanations, and the latest in computer animation. Interviews with scientists and historians, re-creations of key breakthroughs in the history of science, and sequences featuring physicists working on today's most pressing problems will allow viewers to share in the excitement of scientific discovery. Outreach material will be developed for the public and for teachers. NOVA Online will produce a rich companion Web site to allow viewers whose interest is piqued by the series to enhance their learning in a number of ways, including interactive animations of famous experiments and essays that go deeper into subjects than the programs could.

Project Website(s)

(no project website provided)

Team Members

Margaret Drain, Principal Investigator, WGBH
Paula Apsell, Author, WGBH
Barbara Flagg, Evaluator, Multimedia Research


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ISE/AISL
Award Number: 0000610
Funding Amount: 838163


Audience: Educators | Teachers | General Public | Museum | ISE Professionals
Discipline: History | policy | law | Nature of science | Physics
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Broadcast Media | Media and Technology | Websites | Mobile Apps | Online Media