I’m a postdoc researcher at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS), UC Santa Barbara. I am working on the Iterative Eden Project (IEP), a UCSB-based initiative to develop the scientific basis for a sustainable world of 10 billion people.

More here.

Me on the Isle of Arran, Scotland. July 2019.

The Precipice, by Toby Ord

I was sure that I’d first heard Toby Ord interviewed by Sean Carrol on his Mindscape podcast — but I can’t find it to link to. If/when I do, I’ll add here. The following is from a story in The New Yorker, How Close Is Humanity to the Edge? by Corinne Purtill (21 November 2020):Continue reading “The Precipice, by Toby Ord”

The Atlantic tackles Cliodynamics with an interview of UConn professor Peter Turchin

“Peter Turchin, one of the world’s experts on pine beetles and possibly also on human beings, met me reluctantly this summer on the campus of the University of Connecticut at Storrs, where he teaches. Like many people during the pandemic, he preferred to limit his human contact. He also doubted whether human contact would haveContinue reading “The Atlantic tackles Cliodynamics with an interview of UConn professor Peter Turchin”

Vienna was attacked today

There was an attack in the heart of old Vienna, the Innere Stadt, reportedly by several individuals with long guns. We are shocked and saddened in solidarity with our friends and the city we called home for 2 years. May they catch these guys, whoever they are. May it never change the fun-loving character ofContinue reading “Vienna was attacked today”

Good morning, California!

Air quality is currently a bit sub-par in Santa Barbara. Of course, we’re very lucky not to be closer to the fires responsible for it. We meant to go for a hike in the Santa Ynez mountains over the weekend but the trail was closed due to fire risk; I suspect because the authorities wantContinue reading “Good morning, California!”

Fires of the present and past

It’s no secret that we’ve been having some unusual weather recently throughout the western United States. I wrote previously that we should and do expect fire in California; that fire is a natural feature of the ecosystem here and there are many plants (and presumably animals) evolved to take advantage of periodic and spontaneous wildfires.Continue reading “Fires of the present and past”


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