Weekly Update: Int'l Women's Day, Marine Lab Summit, New Photo Contest and more ...

March 9, 2017
Binbin Lee Pimm Group Paul Zizzo

Click on this photo of Binbin Lee to see a video aboutthe Pimm Group produced by Paul Zizzo.

Hi everyone,
Yesterday was International Women’s Day, a day set aside for recognizing the contributions women make in all aspects of life and the challenges they still face in achieving parity with men. 
It’s a day with special resonance in the environmental field.
Put simply, we would not be where we are today in our understanding of the natural world without the groundbreaking contributions of Rachel Carson, Elinor Ostrom, Sylvia Earle, Jane Goodall and countless other brilliant scientists and social scientists – including barrier-busting pioneers like Susan Lozier, Cindy Van Dover and so many others here at the Nic School. 
Recognizing these amazing innovators is a fine thing to do. But we owe them and future generations more than just recognition. We owe them a level playing field.
As a school, we must work – not just one day a year but 365 – to remove the barriers and biases that women face in our field. Our planet depends on it.   
Now, on with this week’s news!

  1. Nearly 30 experts will take part in a two-day summit, “Innovation for Tropical Conservation,” March 19-21 at the Marine Lab. The goal is to discuss the future of remote sensing and drone technologies in tropical conservation, and how Nic School expertise in these areas can advance new initiatives. Dave Johnston and Jennifer Swenson are serving as faculty leads on the project, which is funded by a grant from the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation. Some participants from the summit will come to Durham on March 22 to meet with students. To learn more, contact the Student Association for Geospatial Analysis at saga@duke.edu
  2. The Nic School’s Business and Environment Club hosted a free talk by Esi Waters Langston, former manager of corporate sustainability at Norfolk Southern Corporation, Wednesday evening at Environment Hall. Esi is a double Duke alumna – MEM’13 and Trinity’09.  She shared her insights into the world of sustainable business and how to incorporate sustainability into a Fortune 500 company.  
  3. Erika Weinthal will moderate a timely discussion, “Environmental Futures in the Middle East,” from 4:30 to 6 p.m. Monday, March 20, in Field Auditorium to explore how climate change, water scarcity and other environmental insecurities are increasingly shaping the political landscape of the region – and what can be done to protect human security and ecosystem health there.  She’ll be joined by two of her long-time research collaborators, Neda Zawahri of Cleveland State University and Jeannie Sowers of the University of New Hampshire. 
  4. As you head out for Spring Break, don’t forget to take your camera or smartphone so you can grab photos from your travels for the Spring 2017 I Am Duke Environment Photo Contest. The grand prize winner gets an iPad; four runners-up each win $100 Amazon gift cards. We’ll be accepting submissions from April 17-28, and this year there are four new categories: work, learn, fun and people’s choice (the winner for that category will be voted on via our Facebook page.) 
  5. In case you haven’t been following them, the blog posts are coming in hot and heavy now from our Urban Tropical Ecology field class in Singapore. Tom Schultz, Dan Rittschof and their students are doing a great job of infusing highly informative posts about sustainability in Singapore with lots of local color and cultural insights. Starting this week, they’ll venture across Singapore’s border to explore coral reefs in neighboring Malaysia. 
  6. Paul Zizzo from our IT staff has produced a new video showcasing the work of Stuart Pimm and his students. Sean Rowe and Sergio Tovar on our Communications staff have also been busy producing dozens of new video interviews with Nic School students, staff, faculty and alums. As digital media becomes more and more dominant in our society, it’s good to see so many offices at our school embracing video as a new platform for telling our story and reaching key stakeholders. Keep up the great work! 

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