May 21-22, 2020


Global society faces unprecedented change, in living conditions, economic displacement, information and technology, and our natural environment. On one hand, we have seen amazing social evolution over the decades with technology allowing the individual to stay connected to families, information, and all points global.  And yet with this pervasive means of connection we find profound loneliness, isolation, and an epidemic of depression and suicide. How can we make the connections that support a mutual flourishing?

We will examine the kinds of connections that transcend our individual selves, and reach our inner desire to be part of an interconnected world… perhaps to transform our current sense of the individual, community, and society, from independent to interdependent. More specifically, we will examine connection across the primary aspects of our lives – with:

  • Self, and the many selves in our amazing neural networks
  • Others, and the multiple communities we intersect
  • Nature, and the breadth of life forms that surround us

This year’s forum is designed not only to broaden curiosity, but to appreciate the energy that can only emerge with connection. It’s our attempt to leave attendees with more questions than they came in with and to provide methods to cultivate connection and make ourselves and our planet more alive, healthier and happier.

fees: the registration fee is $295.  For an additional $95, you can join a presenter’s table for dinner on thursday evening. a limited number of partial and full scholarships will be available.


REgistered and simply need to complete payment, Or paying for more than one person?  QUICK PAYMENT


new in 2020: a pre-forum concert on wednesday, May 2oth!

Wednesday details: Join us in sharing a meaningful connection to self through music in community in the BTC Auditorium!
Born from and for this time, the music of Steve Roach, Byron Metcalf and Mark Seelig nourishes the heart and soul. Their live music and sound immersive experience is a conduit to an elemental life force that provides a potent opportunity to step out of the linear, ordinary modes of consciousness and into the vast realms of the mythic imagination. 
This concert is free of charge to registrants.   Doors will open for check-in and a reception at 4:30, with the concert to begin promptly at 5:30.  The event will conclude with wine and chocolates in the Atrium.
background information

Coordinated by Promega Corporation and the BTC Institute, the International Forum on Consciousness offers a lively two days of information-sharing and discussion regarding important – and often challenging – topics. Launched in 2010, the Forum has focused on exploring dimensions of consciousness.

This has involved looking into various realms, pushing the envelope at times, while remaining centered on engaging our audience and our speakers. We have been guided through a range of topics, including creativity, near death, entheogens, intelligence in nature, business evolution, the effects of sensory inputs and ways of detecting and measuring consciousness. Consciousness of Connection – Awakening from Despair to Awe continues this journey.

confirmed presenters

Heather Berlin, DPhil, MPH, Assistant Professor, Department of Psychiatry, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, New York, NY

Michael J. Gelb, Author, Motivational Speaker, Consultant, Juggler; Sleepy Hollow, NY

Rachelle C. Sampson, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Business and Public Policy, Smith School of Business, University of Maryland, College Park, MD; ; Senior Policy Scholar, Center for Business and Public Policy, Georgetown University, Washington DC

Kim Samuel, Founder & Fierce Believer in the Right to Belong, Samuel Centre for Social Connectedness, Montreal, Quebec, Canada

Daniel Siegel, M.D., Founding Co-Director, Mindful Awareness Research Center (MARC); Clinical Professor of Psychiatry; Editor-in-Chief, Norton Professional Series in Interpersonal Neurobiology; Co-Investigator, UCLA Center for Culture, Brain & Development, UCLA School of Medicine, Los Angeles, CA

Rosalind Watts, Ph.D., Clinical Lead Psychologist, Centre for Psychedelic Research, Imperial College London, London, UK

Andreas Weber, Ph.D., Writer and Independent Scholar, Berlin, Germany


William Linton, President & CEO, Promega Corporation; President, BioPharmaceutical Technology Center Institute; Co-Founder & Executive Director, Usona Institute, Madison, WI

Penny Patterson, Vice President, Communications, Promega Corporation, Madison, WI

Steve Paulson, Executive Producer, To The Best Of Our Knowledge, Wisconsin Public Radio and PRX, Madison WI

musicians & immersion artists

Steve Roach
Byron Metcalf
Mark Seelig

deborah domanski


Discounted rates are available HOME2 by Hilton Madison Central ($119) and the Wyndham Garden Hotel Fitchburg ($99). Please sure to refer to this event, the BTC Institute and this rate when making your reservation.  You are advised to book at least one month prior to the event.  You may also want to check out the complete list of hotels that offer special rates for those attending programs at the BTC Institute.


BioParmaceutical Technology Center, 5445 East Cheryl Parkway, Madison, WI


craig & karen Christianson – bronze
Karin Borgh & bill christofferson – bronze
tim erdman | erdman arts – bronze

The Forum ended up being a monumental event in my life. By meeting more people and gaining information, I now have a much better grasp on what I want to study and how I would like to apply myself in society to change it for the better. ”

- 2019 feedback from an undergraduate student