A team at The Washington Post, including two staff writers, Brian Vastag and Steven Mufson, and the Post's Graphics Staff, have won AGU's 2012 David Perlman award.
The Walter Sullivan Award for Excellence in Science Journalism-Features honors outstanding reporting on the Earth and space sciences under a deadline of more than one week. Stephen Hall has been chosen for the award for his article "At Fault?" published by Nature magazine on 15 September 2011.
"At Fault?" examines the political and legal repercussions of the 2009 L'Aquila, Italy, earthquake for seismologists who had attempted to convey risk assessments to the public during the series of earthquakes. These quakes devastated the medieval town and caused numerous deaths. Several scientists are now on trial for not giving strong enough warnings to residents, despite the inexact nature of seismic risk assessment.
The panel of award judges found Hall's article to be "wonderfully written, with human interest and appeal," commending it as "a focused, yet deep, look at a topic that will likely become very important in future decades and disasters." Among individual judges' comments was praise for Hall for "how he took a regional court case about a single natural disaster and broadened it into something relevant for all of us - the role of scientists in estimating risk and making forecasts."
"This story communicates not only the importance, but also the risk of communicating science," commented another judge. "It was written for scientists and the general public, and is very relevant to both."
Hall's article is available online at http://bit.ly/mXFUEo.
Receiving this year's David Perlman Award for Excellence in Science Journalism-News are Steven Mufson, Brian Vastag, and The Washington Post Graphics Staff. The Perlman award honors outstanding reporting on the Earth and space sciences under a deadline of one week or less. This year's award recognizes the article "For Virginia's fault zone, an event of rare magnitude" that ran online on 23 August 2011, the day an unusual 5.8 magnitude earthquake shook up the Washington, D.C., region. The article appeared the next day in the newspaper's print editions.
Vastag and Mufson's article examines and explains the extraordinary temblor - the largest to strike Virginia since 1897 -- from many angles, including how it compares to earthquakes in other regions and to what is expected along the U.S. East Coast. Having reached at least eight scientists as sources for their story, the reporters gathered a broad scientific perspective on the earthquake, from the temblor's magnitude and its geologic setting, to how widely it was felt and its possible causes.
In commending the story, the Perlman Award judges noted that "In addition to being well- written, the article ... provided a good, concise, and clear summary about the earthquake, addressed questions the public might ask about the earthquake, and ... had a very impressive, fast turnaround of one day." They recommended the article for the award for bringing new information and concepts about AGU sciences to the public's attention and making sciences accessible and interesting to general audiences without sacrificing accuracy.
The judges also remarked upon the article's accompanying graphic - at once eye-catching, colorful, and informative - which geographically illustrates the recent seismic history of the region and shows where the earthquake took place relative to the vast, ever-moving tectonic plates that make up the crust of the Earth.
Vastag and Mufson's article appears online at http://wapo.st/n5lyIs.
The 2012 Sullivan and Perlman awardees will receive their awards in December in San Francisco during the AGU Fall Meeting, an annual scientific conference expected to attract more than 20,000 attendees this year.
AGU's Sullivan and Perlman Awards are named, respectively, for Walter Sullivan, the late science editor of The New York Times, and David Perlman, science editor of the San Francisco Chronicle. Each award consists of a plaque and a $5,000 stipend.
AGU is the world's largest organization of Earth and space scientists, with more than 60,000 members worldwide. By means of journalism awards, mass media fellowships, communications workshops for scientists, and other programs, AGU encourages excellence in reporting news and information about the Earth and space sciences to the general public.
For further information about AGU journalism awards and other AGU honors, see http://sites.agu.org/honors/.
Peter Weiss | American Geophysical Union
Reconstructing the richness of pristine oceans funded by the ERC
28.10.2019 | Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz
AI for Understanding and Modelling the Earth System – International Research Team wins ERC Synergy Grant
14.10.2019 | Max-Planck-Institut für Biogeochemie
In a joint experimental and theoretical work performed at the Heidelberg Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics, an international team of physicists detected for the first time an orbital crossing in the highly charged ion Pr⁹⁺. Optical spectra were recorded employing an electron beam ion trap and analysed with the aid of atomic structure calculations. A proposed nHz-wide transition has been identified and its energy was determined with high precision. Theory predicts a very high sensitivity to new physics and extremely low susceptibility to external perturbations for this “clock line” making it a unique candidate for proposed precision studies.
Laser spectroscopy of neutral atoms and singly charged ions has reached astonishing precision by merit of a chain of technological advances during the past...
The ability to investigate the dynamics of single particle at the nano-scale and femtosecond level remained an unfathomed dream for years. It was not until the dawn of the 21st century that nanotechnology and femtoscience gradually merged together and the first ultrafast microscopy of individual quantum dots (QDs) and molecules was accomplished.
Ultrafast microscopy studies entirely rely on detecting nanoparticles or single molecules with luminescence techniques, which require efficient emitters to...
Graphene, a two-dimensional structure made of carbon, is a material with excellent mechanical, electronic and optical properties. However, it did not seem suitable for magnetic applications. Together with international partners, Empa researchers have now succeeded in synthesizing a unique nanographene predicted in the 1970s, which conclusively demonstrates that carbon in very specific forms has magnetic properties that could permit future spintronic applications. The results have just been published in the renowned journal Nature Nanotechnology.
Depending on the shape and orientation of their edges, graphene nanostructures (also known as nanographenes) can have very different properties – for example,...
Using a clever technique that causes unruly crystals of iron selenide to snap into alignment, Rice University physicists have drawn a detailed map that reveals...
University of Texas and MIT researchers create virtual UAVs that can predict vehicle health, enable autonomous decision-making
In the not too distant future, we can expect to see our skies filled with unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) delivering packages, maybe even people, from location...
03.12.2019 | Event News
15.11.2019 | Event News
15.11.2019 | Event News
11.12.2019 | Life Sciences
11.12.2019 | Health and Medicine
11.12.2019 | Earth Sciences