Julia Bradley-Cook Receives Honorable Mention from AIBS
Each year, AIBS recognizes graduate students in the biological sciences who have demonstrated an interest in and ability to contribute to science and public policy. This year competition for the award was especially fierce; AIBS awarded two students the top prize, in addition to recognizing three students, including Bradley-Cook, with honorable mentions.
Bradley-Cook is a fourth-year PhD student in Ecology and Evolutionary Biology working with Dr. Ross Virginia on carbon dynamics in Greenland soils. Bradley-Cook has been interested in the intersection of science and policy ever since an undergraduate course got her thinking about the role of science in resource management. Two years working for sustainable development NGOs in Namibia after college confirmed her interest and exposed her to the challenges of bringing science and policy together.
Since coming to Dartmouth, Bradley-Cook has continued her commitment to policy while working to complete her biology degree. Her research addresses the critical issue of how much carbon currently locked in arctic permafrost will be released as the climate warms. As Dr. Virginia says, “Julia’s work connects basic science to the information needs of the policy world. No small task, and essential work.”
As president of the Graduate Student Council, Bradley-Cook works closely with the Dartmouth administration to advocate for graduate student rights. As a fellow in Dartmouth’s Polar Environmental Change Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT), she has been able to pair her scientific research of Greenland’s soils with a study of Greenlandic policy, meeting with Greenlandic national leaders during her field seasons and on Dartmouth’s campus. Bradley-Cook says that her “understanding of the social and political context has enriched [her] connection to Greenland, and has made [her] research all the more worthwhile.”
Bradley-Cook is honored to be recognized by AIBS and says that it will encourage her to pursue science-policy positions in the future. With such pressing issues as global warming and water shortages, we need leaders like Bradley-Cook to bring science and policy together.
by Ruth Heindel