December has been a very busy month for podcasts! First up, I interviewed Dr. Vera Kolb, Professor of Chemistry at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside and the editor of Astrobiology: An Evolutionary Approach. Thirty-seven authors from a multitude of disciplines provide an introduction to every aspect of the burgeoning field of astrobiology, which encompasses everything from prebiotic chemistry, to geologic and atmospheric conditions of early Earth, to life in extreme environments and the search for extraterrestrial life.
This is an entire short course in a book, and if you’re interested in catching up to the latest research on all aspects of life on Earth and elsewhere, you’ll get a lot out of reading it! I was especially impressed with Chapter 3, which deals with Education and Public Outreach (EPO) and communicating fundamental concepts to the public. There’s a lot of research behind strategies for science outreach, and this chapter (by Timothy Slater) has some excellent advice for scientists and communicators alike. And that’s just one of many interesting chapters!
You can listen to our conversation via the New Books in Astronomy webpage, or find us on iTunes!