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Using Positive Feedback for Training Elephants in Thailand

I have come to realize over the course of my visit that this is an incredibly sensitive complex concern, one that needs a multi-prong strategy, as one solution does not fit all the regional contexts.

Pushing the frontiers of human exploration, on Earth and beyond

Should we be going to Mars, the moon and other places beyond Earth when we are not able to properly explore and take care of our home planet? Is the huge money being spent on extraterrestrial exploration the best investment we can make when we still haven’t seen, let alone, mapped most of the ocean floor?

These fundamental questions were at the heart of an hour-long debate at today’s National Geographic Explorers Festival in Washington, D.C.

National Geographic Buffet Awards 2017: Rosamira Guillen and Olivier Nsengimana

What do two Critically Endangered enigmatic animals — a majestic wading bird in Africa and an adorable monkey with a shock of white hair in South America — have in common at the National Geographic Explorers Festival? They each have a remarkable champion advocating and working for their survival who have been recognized with the 2017 National Geographic Buffet Award.

Secrets for successful science communication: Story-selling, sciencetelling, your passionate self

Want to get the secret sauce for effective communication of science? Three of National Geographic’s most famous explorers shared their advice and experience at the National Geographic Explorers Festival in Washington, D.C. today.

Pristine Seas facing major setback as Trump Administration reviews world’s largest marine preserves, Enric Sala warns

National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala is concerned that the recently announced U.S. Department of the Interior review of Papahanaumokuakea and four other marine monuments may be the first major setback for Pristine Seas, a National Geographic project launched in 2008 to explore and help save the last wild places in the ocean.

“This is a true land grab, a few companies trying to exploit something that belongs to all Americans and humanity,” said at the National Geographic Society Explorers Festival in Washington, D.C. today.

Agroforestry Insights Bring New Hope to Cameroon’s Farmers

“This is a diversified system which is ecologically more stable,” says National Geographic Explorer Zacharie Tchoundjeu. “It solved the problem of wind erosion, it solved the problem of soil fertility.”

How the National Geographic Society Has Rebooted to Help Restore Earth’s Natural Equilibrium

Six months into his new position as National Geographic chief scientist, Jonathan Baillie, the former conservation programmes director of the Zoological Society of London, outlined his “scientific vision” for how the National Geographic Society would work to help create a a planet that’s going to provide for 9 billion people — and all forms of other life. “How do we do this with 9 billion people on the planet? This is the great challenge we all face. National Geographic now needs to think about its unique role helping us face this challenge,” Baillie told hundreds of National Geographic explorers and staff gathered at the Society’s headquarters for this week’s Explorers Festival.

Trunks in Tethers

Thailand’s current population of elephants is around 7,000, of which nearly 4,000 are captive beasts of burden. These enslaved animals can never be reintroduced into wild herds. They bear the psychological and physical wounds of neglect, abuse, malnutrition, and seclusion.

National Geographic Explorers a ‘Secret Weapon’ to Change the World, Says Society President Gary Knell

“This is truly National Geographic’s moment, because as Neil deGrasse Tyson says, the great thing about science is that it’s true, whether you believe it or not,” National Geographic Society President and CEO Gary E. Knell said at the opening of the Explorers Festival (#NatGeoFest) at National Geographic headquarters in Washington, D.C. today.

Knell told hundreds of National Geographic explorers and staff that the Society had been through a major transition that transformed the organization, “a transformation that better positioned National Geographic to address the multiple challenges facings its future, but more importantly, facing our planet. We figured out a way to support your critical work in a more direct way and tackle those issues by connecting and integrating our multimedia platforms. And today the content that we are generating, the stories we’re telling, the grants we’re making, the actions we’re taking are more needed and important than ever before.”

Food, Fuel, Medicine, Wrinkle Reducer: Algae Does It All

You know what there’s really plenty of in the sea? Algae. And I am in love with them. Most people envision algae as slimy, possibly toxic, green scum. But this diverse group of fast-growing aquatic plants is about to undergo an image makeover, and may soon seem flat-out glamorous. Algae got a lot of excited…

National Geographic Emerging Explorer Anand Varma: Communicating Science With Visual Media

Science photographer Anand Varma works to tell the story behind the science of everything from primate behavior and hummingbird biomechanics to amphibian disease and forest ecology. For his groundbreaking photography to communicate complex science in compelling ways, he has been named one of 14 Class of 2017 National Geographic Emerging Explorers, a uniquely gifted group of inspiring scientists, conservationists, storytellers and innovators who are changing the world.

National Geographic Emerging Explorer Hotlin Ompusunggu: Using Dentistry to Stop Deforestation

Dentist and conservationist Hotlin Ompusunggu combines conservation and healthcare through community-based projects, with a mission to break the cycle between poverty and illegal logging in Indonesia. Her innovative approach is having an impact, for the better, on both people and the natural world, which is why she has been recognized as a National Geographic Emerging Explorer.

Hotlin is the Co-Founder of Alam Sehat Lestari (ASRI), a nongovernmental organization in West Kalimantan, Indonesia. ASRI improves conservation and health outcomes through healthcare and community-based projects.

Her passion lies at the intersection of human and environmental health. She believes that “not only can we have healthy people and a healthy environment, but the two are fundamentally interlinked. We cannot separate one from the other.” Hotlin is hopeful that the success of ASRI can serve as a model to other endangered communities and environments worldwide.

Hokulea Sights the Hawaiian Islands After Incredible 3-Year Voyage

At 12:30 p.m. this afternoon, the crew of Hokulea sited the sacred mountain of Haleakala, signifying that the legendary canoe is officially back home, bringing back wisdom, lessons, and ideas as gifts to share with Hawaii’s children from this world wide voyage of rich learning.

National Geographic Emerging Explorer Mateus Mutemba: Ambassador for Conservation-based Prosperity

Mateus Mutemba, the Warden of Gorongosa National Park in Mozambique, has been selected as one of National Geographic’s Class of 2017 Emerging Explorers. A spectacular 4,000-square-kilometer (1,500-square-miles, slightly larger than Rhode Island) national park in southeast Africa, Gorongosa is located in central Mozambique’s Sofala Province. Historically, its unique bio-geographical features supported some of the densest wildlife populations in Africa. Leading conservationists, including Harvard Professor E.O. Wilson, scientific advisor to the park, consider Gorongosa to be the greatest restoration success in Africa — and now one of the most biodiversity-rich protected areas in the world.

National Geographic Emerging Explorer Jennifer W. Lopez Making Space and Tech More Down to Earth

This post is part of an ongoing series of interviews with the 2017 class of National Geographic Emerging Explorers.