Barrow is a pretty interesting place in terms of the sheer amount and variety of science that gets done here, as it has been since the 1st International Polar Year (IPY). It can be hard keeping track of it even if you live here and are a scientist. We don’t have a local newspaper reporter, and the radio station can no longer afford a full-time reporter, so there is no local source of science stories for the general public.
Many scientists want to let people know what they are doing, and what they are learning by it, but there are a number of barriers (another post for another day). One way is blogging. On bigger hard-science projects, websites and more are possible, since the cost of people to take care of them is really a tiny portion of the project budget.
A recent project called OASIS really takes this to another level. Dr. Paul Shepson, the PI, actually built in an author to write about the project, and things grew from there. Peter Lourie, the author, has written two children’s’ books and has moved on to multimedia. They’ve made a really neat website, which has video from a number of scientists who work in Barrow. There’s a lot from various folks on the OASIS project, but also from people who live in Barrow, like Fran Tate of Pepe’s, whaling captain Eugene Brower and even me. I actually got interviewed twice, because the sound on the first set got messed up, so I had to do it all over again when Peter came up again!
Definitely worth checking out.