My Conversation with Hugh Possingham: Fun & Failure in Science Communications

It’s up as the latest episode of Science+Story: The Podcast, with Hugh (the chief scientist of Queensland state in Australia as well as the former chief scientist of The Nature Conservancy) weighing in on matters such as

  • The three kinds of applied ecology (“Killing things you don’t like, killing things you do like, and trying to stop things dying that you like”) and why the third is so hard to get people turned on about;
  • His biggest science communications failures (one involves koalas, the other a temporary victory that taught him a lesson about being non-partisan);
  • How he squares advocacy for nature conservation with being a scientist (easily);
  • Why conservation should be using different flagship endangered species (you know, besides tigers and elephants) to get people excited about conservation; and
  • Why he won’t talk to you — even in a bar — if there’s a map nearby.