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August 2016: I wrote a piece for The Conversation discussing recent increases in human lifespan. I asked why we live longer than we did 150 years ago, review the evidence supporting the different ideas, and speculate on how long we may live in the future.
July 2016: Our new paper, published in PNAS, shows that early-life infections do not appear to affect later-life survival and fertility, contrary to a leading hypothesis. The paper received media coverage in The Scotsman, The Herald Scotland, The Times of Malta and medicalresearch.com.
November 2015: I wrote an article for the brilliant science communication website PLoSable about last year’s paper on tolerance of intestinal worm infections, published in PLoS Biology. The website takes scientific papers and distills them for an audience of 12-14 years old. My effort, Coping With Parasites In A Wild World, can be found here, but there are loads of other great resources to get kids into science.
August 2015: I was invited to return to the @biotweeps twitter account for a day on August 6th, as part of a week marking the first anniversary of the project! More information on the other great contributors at the BioTweeps website.
February 2015: Our paper, led by Elisabeth Bolund, shows that genetic variances for life-history traits has increased in recent human history, suggesting that natural selection on human populations will result in continued evolution. The paper received media coverage in several places, including the Independent, Daily Mail, International Business Times and I Fucking Love Science.
September 2014: Starting September 1st, I am taking control of Biotweeps for a week, a twitter account featuring a different biologist each week, discussing hot topics and answering questions. Join the fun now!
April 2014: Our research on elephants was picked up again, this time by NERC’s Planet Earth magazine.
March 2014: Our new research on Asian elephants, showing that individuals who have calves in early life have reduced survival but increased lifetime fitness, received media coverage by BBC Nature and several science sites (phys.org, Nature World News, Science Daily, International Science Times) as well as Sri Lanka’s Sunday Observer!
December 2013: I gave a talk at the Yorkshire Mammal Group monthly meeting on what we’ve learned from 25 years studying Soay sheep on St Kilda.
November 2013: I gave a talk to the University of Sheffield Natural History Society on the ecology of Soay sheep and why they should volunteer for fieldwork experience on the project.
August 2013: While waiting in the airport to go on holiday, I gave a few interviews which led to media coverage of our PNAS paper on how early-life nutrition shapes responses to future stress in humans, including Nature News, ABC News, and most pleasingly of all, the Sheffield Star and Yorkshire Post!
March 2013: coverage of our Functional Ecology paper on reproductive senescence in female Soay sheep in NERC’s Planet Earth magazine.
November 2012: our field trip to Myanmar to initiate data collection from the world’s largest semi-captive elephant population was filmed by Susanne and Simon Campbell-Jones. Their documentary, Of Oozies and Elephants opened the Bath Film Festival in 2013.
September 2012: I participated in Researchers’ Night, a public engagement event run by the University of Sheffield to get members of the public into our department to see what goes on in the University.
August 2009: the first paper from my PhD! Our paper on environmental stress and the rate of ageing in Soay sheep was published, and received media coverage in the Express, Metro, Times Of India, and on GMTV, BBC Scotland and BBC Online.
March 2008: I presented my PhD work to High School students as part of the University of Edinburgh’s Science Communication in Action scheme.