Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters

  • Madison




1922 University Avenue
United States

About Us

The Wisconsin Academy of Sciences, Arts & Letters produces programs and publications that explore, explain, and sustain Wisconsin thought and culture.

The Wisconsin Academy brings people together at the intersection of the sciences, arts, and letters to inspire discovery, illuminate creative work, and foster civil dialogue on important issues. We connect Wisconsin people and ideas for a better world.

In 1870, the Wisconsin Academy was created to bring together those “who, though already more or less engaged in original studies and investigations of various kinds, accomplish less than they would had they frequent associations with each other, a common storehouse into which they bring their material collections, and some proper medium through which to publish the approved results of their scientific labors to the world.”

We have built upon that initial concept to become a key resource for informed and engaged citizens who appreciate the value of discovery and learning. Our goal is to foster a rich and lively creative culture that enhances our quality of life so that Wisconsin is economically, socially, and environmentally resilient. While undertaking efforts that are making a difference for the citizens of Wisconsin and beyond, we are guided by the values of critical thinking, curiosity, excellence, community engagement, aesthetic quality, and openminded inclusivity. We publish Wisconsin People & Ideas, the quarterly magazine of Wisconsin thought and culture. Our public programs include the James Watrous Gallery in Overture Center for the Arts, which showcases contemporary art from Wisconsin; Academy Evening Talks, our statewide series of public forums; and Wisconsin Initiatives, a program to explore major issues and identify and promote solutions—currently including Waters of Wisconsin and Wisconsin’s Climate and Energy Future.

We remain an independent, nonprofit organization, separate from state government and the university system. Our programs and operations are funded by grants, by private endowments, and by our members and donors.