VOICES Voices Icon Ideas and Insight From Explorers


Saving Rice in Pictures

Not pictured: the dozens of hands cutting, sorting and hauling rice. The sweat-soaked saris and brows. The awe of witnessing the preservation of biodiversity.      

Nearly Crushed By a Flipping Iceberg

Frozen in time, Franz Josef Land is one of the last lingering remnants of the truly wild Arctic. The remote and nearly uninhabited 192-island archipelago is renowned for its biodiversity, which includes polar bears, walruses, bowhead whales, belugas, and narwhals. The intensifying impact of climate change, however, nearly turned this serene environment deadly for National Geographic Explorer-in-Residence Enric Sala and his crew.

Marigolds: an (agri)cultural staple

The first seeds I ever saved were marigold seeds. At the time, I was a garden educator at a small neighborhood environmental nonprofit in Camden, New Jersey. The Center for Environmental Transformation(CFET) is situated in the South Waterfront neighborhood, an old urban community enclosed by industrial facilities which not only restrict access to the nearby waterfront, but…

What’s in a Name? An Exploration of Identity in Serbia and Croatia

There I was: thousands of miles from home, with a total of zero English-speaking relatives, trying to connect with the place where my family originated from… only to find out that I wasn’t even in the right country!

Of course, to anyone familiar with the Balkans, and especially former-Yugoslavia, this story is a common one. Identifying as Serbian, Croatian, Bosnian, or Montenegrin may actually have nothing to do with where you grew up. Or where your parents grew up. Or where your grandparents came from originally.

National Geographic Footage Lost at Sea for 3 Years Has Returned Home

In April 2013, two 150 lb. National Geographic Cameras were sucked into the Gulf Stream. Three years and a couple thousand miles later, a tiny dog named Scuba alerted her owner to something she noticed floating in the water. One of the cameras, and all of its footage, had been found.

How Citizen Science Changed the Way Fukushima Radiation is Reported

Photos By Ari Beser Tokyo – “It appears the world-changing event didn’t change anything, and it’s disappointing,”said Pieter Franken, a researcher at Keio University in Japan (Wide Project), the MIT Media Lab (Civic Media Centre), and co-founder of Safecast, a citizen-science network dedicated to the measurement and distribution of accurate levels of radiation around the…

Pictures: Lessons Learned from Hiroshima and Nagasaki

A new year has begun, and my Fulbright Grant is already halfway complete. I cannot believe how quickly the time has passed. For the last five months, I have been living in Hiroshima and Nagasaki interviewing survivors of the atomic bombs, or Hibakusha as they are called in Japanese. It is the 70th year since the weapons were…

Blood Moon Over Red Square

Act One: A Good Idea The last time a Blood Moon shone down on Red Square, it was 1982. Soviet officials were strict about photography. You couldn’t just traipse on down to the Kremlin and snap a shot. But thirty-three years later, photographers are a lot more free. I would set out to get that picture and…