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Science Journalism


Over the years, I've gradually drifted toward writing and public speaking as a major focus of my career. What I hadn't realized, is that I actually meet the dictionary definition as a journlist. Indeed, for the past eight years, I've been under continuous contract as a writer for the Hartford Courant, the state's main metropolitan daily and the nation's oldest continuously published (1764) newspaper. Apparently, I'm the first scientist to write for them as an op-ed columnist, perhaps because we scientists are usually thought of as having hard evidence, rather than hot air. Yet, every science organization I belong to is now stongly advocating that scientists play a larger direct role in public dialogue.

Since April 2004, I have published nearly 300 opinion columns and more than 50 essays, mostly in the Courant's Op-Ed page and its award winning Sunday Commentary section "Place" and on its Sunday headline page. Others have been published in the New York Times, The Boston Globe, The Providence Journal, other metropolitain papers, and magazines. I've also spoken at journalism conferences, advised editors, given public lectures on the topic, and have worked with journalism students.


PHOTO BANNER : Water issues from 2009 freshwater bog Walden to Wobegon. Road sign in Linton, North Dakota urging residents to hook up to the regional Missouri River system, rather than to municipal wells. Porch chair in upstate New Hampshire proclaims patriotism, even as the facility pollutes a nearby lake. Poland Spring water is a registered brand, not a gathering of molecules, and hence need not come from the original well at Poland Spring, which it certainly does not. Paddleboats, choking weeds, and swimming dock at a small lake in southern Ontario illustrate multiple uses of a small lake, one of which is to receive fertilizer runoff.