Also this week: tenured history professor fired for serial sexual misconduct, a data-based profile of polisci Twitter, and more.
UC Santa Cruz has fired tenured history professor Gopal Balakrishnan after finding him guilty of sexual misconduct. The firing follows a months-long investigation into multiple formal complaints against Balakrishnan, and an even longer period of student protests against him. One of the complainants, former UC Santa Cruz student Anneliese Harlander, is still suing Balakrishnan in Superior Court for sexual assault. Like the complainants and the protestors, I’m glad UC Santa Cruz did the right thing, while remaining dismayed that it took so many brave complaints and years of protests in order for the right thing to happen. (ht @jtlevy)
The Canadian Institute of Ecology and Evolution is calling for working group proposals. Deadline Oct. 14. You can also apply for funding for training workshops any time.
Nature profiles ecologist Thomas Crowther. Lots to think about here, in terms of where (some of) ecology is at and where it’s going.
A data-based profile of political science Twitter. Very interesting. Someone should do this for ecology Twitter.
A 2018 Nature paper that found that the oceans were warming much faster than predicted by climate models has been retracted. The data analysis contained errors that greatly inflated the precision of the relevant parameter estimates. The errors were originally pointed out by a prominent critic of climate science. Kudos to the authors for doing the right thing: they quickly looked into the errors and publicly corrected them.
Related to a link from last week, here’s an article on how, thanks to climate change, insurance losses due to “secondary perils”–risks like hail and wildfire–now exceed losses due to “primary perils” like earthquakes and hurricanes.
The dangers of reusing the same “natural experiments” to address many questions. Interesting. Curious what Andrew Gelman would think of this.
The latest on the move of the USDA’s Economic Research Service to Kansas City, a move widely seen as an attempt by the Trump administration to gut USDA scientific and technical expertise. Only 19 of 280 employees chose to move; 88 left the agency and 50 retired, with the remainder granted exemptions to remain in Washington, DC. A USDA memo says the agency’s work will be “significantly delayed” due to staff shortages.
The 2019 MacArthur Fellows have been announced. Congratulations to all recipients, including marine ecologist Stacy Jupiter, evolutionary anthropologist Jenny Tung, crop plant geneticist Zachary Lippman, and paleoclimatologist Andrea Dutton.