Keith Bowers, left, talks with Andy Cole and Kendall Mainzer, at. right.

New podcast engages research to improve the world’s ecological health

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Andy Cole, an ecologist in the Penn State Stuckeman School’s Department of Landscape Architecture and the director of the Ecology plus Design (E+D) research initiative, was inspired to create a new podcast series to address the areas of biodiversity, energy, risk and hazard and water systems in order to bring light to the importance of the world’s health.

According to the podcast website, E+D is focusing on three aspects in the series: research-activated design, graduate education in ecologically based design, and outreach through a variety of speakers, workshops and publications.

“The need for such an approach is evident in the increasingly complex environmental problems that cannot be solved with simple approaches,” said Cole. “The initiative uses design as an organizing principle to bring together ecologists and designers of all sorts into a research and education consortium to address ecological issues across a broad scale.”

There are currently three episodes of the podcast available with new episodes being added each month. Guests have included Jack Dangermond, founder and president of Esri; Emily McCoy, assistant professor of practice at North Carolina State University; and Keith Bowers, president and founder of Biohabitats, a multidisciplinary organization focused on regenerative design.

E+D aims for the podcast to gain the attention of fellow academics, current and prospective students and potential donors.

“The podcast engages thought leaders in the fields of landscape architecture, ecology, and design in conservation,” said Alex Keim, a landscape architecture graduate student in the Stuckeman School. “It also gives voice to the mission of E+D and hopes to add value to the global conversations around the topic of ecology and design.”

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