Category: Series

Studying Scientists in their Natural Habitat

By Melissa Haeffner Growing up in a small suburb in the United States, my dream was to move to the big city, to agilely navigate through shoulder-to-shoulder masses of humanity and revel in the clashes between cultures. I didn’t pay attention to the “environment” or “nature,” and it was not a central part of my sociology studies in college.

Noticing Tiny Things

By Ghislaine (Platell) Small I have always been drawn to the environment and to understanding how living things work. My parents are both plant molecular biologists, and I had a limited understanding and familiarity of DNA and photosynthesis long before it was taught to me at school.

We Are All Antarcticans

By Fern Hames As a teenager in the 1970s, I was shocked by the environmental destruction described by Rachel Carson in Silent Spring and entranced by the idea of living in the forest and studying animals, as demonstrated by Jane Goodall in Gombe National Park, Tanzania. These two highly influential women influenced me to study science and, in particular, biology.

Not All Penguins Are Clean

By Lindsay Stringer Geography always made sense to me. I’d learn about how a river meanders in a lecture, for example, and then I’d go outside, find a river, and see it for myself. There’s far less reliance on imagination in geography compared to other subjects where you learn about the small or the large at scales you can’t see for yourself.

A Geologist on the Rocks

By Jessica Reeves I am not someone who ever dreamed of going to Antarctica. Many of my friends are, and most have succeeded in those endeavors. So when the opportunity came for me to take part in a 3-week leadership course on the Antarctic Peninsula, I was…cautious.

Plant Blindness

By Margaret Barbour I’m a plant physiologist, and I study how plants respond to the environment and how plants have shaped the earth’s biogeochemical cycles. I’m interested in both natural ecosystems, like forests, and managed ecosystems like crops. Antarctica is not at all an obvious place for a plant physiologist to want to go.

Soil Down South?

By Dr Samantha Grover Once upon a time there was a little girl who spent all her days at kindergarten down at the back of the garden playing in the mud. Fast forward 20 years and you will find her up the front of the class, eagerly discovering a new way of looking at the world, called soil science.

What does it mean to live a “not quite fatal” existence?

By Sadie E. Hale Lockdown in most European countries ended two months ago; but as I write this, cases are rising again, and the sense of impending confinement informs my thoughts. Questions of what constitutes a “good life” and, more chillingly, a “good death” have become more urgent during the pandemic.

The Future of Amazonia: Inheritance or Ruin?

By Marcílio de Freitas Amazonia is one of the planet’s last utopias. Even before the New World was “discovered,” it existed in the imaginary of foreign travelers and governments. Yet the future of Brazil’s Amazonia region is fast becoming a tragedy in the making [1], which is calling out for international attention.

Under Another Sky

By Vidya Sarveswaran The Indian village of Piplantri celebrates the birth of every newborn girl by planting 111 trees. In her new film, Under Another Sky, RCC alumna Vidya Sarveswaren tells the story of the village, which has so far planted a quarter of… Continue Reading “Under Another Sky”