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22 September 2017
Every four years, the volcanological community gets together somewhere in the world to spend a week (or two) talking about…you guessed it, volcanoes. And because volcanology – like any ‘disaster science’ – occupies a special intersection of geologic processes and human impacts, there is an inherent social science aspect in its practice.
24 February 2017
Everyone (in California, at least) has seen those clips that get run every winter of the snow surveys: people walking out into a white-blanketed meadow to shove a pole into the snow and record the depth. Or, in the case of the 2015 broadcast, walking out onto muddy grass and gesturing sadly at a lack of snow in which to do this. It’s a good photo op, but the broadcasts rarely follow up with much of the science behind the survey.
27 January 2017
Right now it’s incredibly important for scientists to hammer home why science is essential, important and needs to be practiced rigorously, transparently and without censorship. It’s clear that we can no longer limit ourselves to broader impact statements in our next grant applications. I thought I’d do my part by starting a new blog series and highlighting United States geoscientists and their work in action.
9 January 2017
Remember a couple of months ago when Google Earth Timelapse got updated? I didn’t spend a lot of time looking at it back then, but I’ve taken it for a spin since then and – being a volcanologist – decided to look at volcanoes. And it turned out to be a lot of fun.
8 December 2016
I’ve had to back out of attending the Fall Meeting this year, but I didn’t want to abandon my yearly Social Media roundup even though I won’t be joining in. It’s been great over the years to watch the social media and science communication activities balloon from a couple of sessions and a meetup or two to scads of activities.
26 February 2016
My father and I share a habit: we tend to point out and grumble over certain catchphrases we hear or read in a news report, mostly because they’re misused, overused, or just plain don’t make sense. He dislikes things such as “address the issue” or “touch base” or “spearhead”. Me? I make faces when I hear Earth science terms getting co-opted.
18 December 2015
You’ve probably seen all the excellent “How to navigate a conference” posts that pop up in the fall and winter each year, and they’re great, but this isn’t one of them. My take is a little different; I’m going to give you a kind of bird-watcher-style guide to the people you’re sure to meet every year at AGU Fall Meeting. Many of us fall into one or more of these categories, depending on the ways we find to survive the whirlwind conference week.
17 December 2015
It’s the third day of the meeting and I’m already exhausted. But this is par for the course when you try to do everything at AGU! It’s possible to spend all of your time in talks and posters and immerse yourself entirely in new research, but most people here end up mixing in other things: workshops, town hall discussions, service groups, and of course meeting with colleagues and collaborators. The …
14 December 2015
This year, you may have noticed I didn’t do a Social Media Roundup, and I’m not using my usual Day 1, Day 2, etc. titles. Partially, that’s because AGU has been doing a fantastic job of advertising the social media activities going on this year, and because there are now too many social-media-related sessions, talks and posters to list in one place. That’s wonderful! But I’m also changing things up …
27 April 2015
A short, light post this time. I’ll be doing an outreach event as a USGS rep in a couple of weeks, and having done the demo once already at AAAS’s 2015 Family Science Days, I was thinking about the things I learned last time. Some of these have also applied to other outreach I’ve done (I love doing video chats with students and science clubs, especially if I can get people excited about geology!)