Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

AGU announces 2012 journalism awards

18.07.2012
Freelance journalist Stephen S. Hall has won the 2012 Walter Sullivan award of the American Geophysical Union (AGU).

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
Further information:
http://www.agu.org

More articles from Awards Funding:

nachricht 9.1 million euros for trinational quantum research
07.03.2019 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

nachricht 6.7 Million Euros for Microsystems Engineering Project
05.02.2019 | Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg im Breisgau

All articles from Awards Funding >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Stellar cartography

The Potsdam Echelle Polarimetric and Spectroscopic Instrument (PEPSI) at the Large Binocular Telescope (LBT) in Arizona released its first image of the surface magnetic field of another star. In a paper in the European journal Astronomy & Astrophysics, the PEPSI team presents a Zeeman- Doppler-Image of the surface of the magnetically active star II Pegasi.

A special technique allows astronomers to resolve the surfaces of faraway stars. Those are otherwise only seen as point sources, even in the largest telescopes...

Im Focus: Heading towards a tsunami of light

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology and the University of Gothenburg, Sweden, have proposed a way to create a completely new source of radiation. Ultra-intense light pulses consist of the motion of a single wave and can be described as a tsunami of light. The strong wave can be used to study interactions between matter and light in a unique way. Their research is now published in the scientific journal Physical Review Letters.

"This source of radiation lets us look at reality through a new angle - it is like twisting a mirror and discovering something completely different," says...

Im Focus: Revealing the secret of the vacuum for the first time

New research group at the University of Jena combines theory and experiment to demonstrate for the first time certain physical processes in a quantum vacuum

For most people, a vacuum is an empty space. Quantum physics, on the other hand, assumes that even in this lowest-energy state, particles and antiparticles...

Im Focus: Sussex scientists one step closer to a clock that could replace GPS and Galileo

Physicists in the EPic Lab at University of Sussex make crucial development in global race to develop a portable atomic clock

Scientists in the Emergent Photonics Lab (EPic Lab) at the University of Sussex have made a breakthrough to a crucial element of an atomic clock - devices...

Im Focus: Sensing shakes

A new way to sense earthquakes could help improve early warning systems

Every year earthquakes worldwide claim hundreds or even thousands of lives. Forewarning allows people to head for safety and a matter of seconds could spell...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

International Modelica Conference with 330 visitors from 21 countries at OTH Regensburg

11.03.2019 | Event News

Selection Completed: 580 Young Scientists from 88 Countries at the Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting

01.03.2019 | Event News

LightMAT 2019 – 3rd International Conference on Light Materials – Science and Technology

28.02.2019 | Event News

 
Latest News

Levitating objects with light

19.03.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

New technique for in-cell distance determination

19.03.2019 | Life Sciences

Stellar cartography

19.03.2019 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>