fellows 2014-15Animal Studies Postdoctoral Fellow
Liv Baker is an animal welfare scientist with a focus on wildlife conservation. She is interested in the interface of the often-compartmentalized disciplines of animal behavior, conservation and welfare. She has looked at the effects of habitat fragmentation on animal movement and survival, and how an animal's perception of its habitat affects its movement choices. She has also been involved in an initiative to use animal welfare science methodology to understand the impact of management protocols on baboons in South Africa. Liv is currently interested in understanding how personality and variation in life experience affect an animal's ability to cope with the stressors of conservation interventions. She has an M.Sc. in Organismic and Evolutionary Biology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and completed her Ph.D. in the Animal Welfare Program at the University of British Columbia. Director, College of the Environment Barry Chernoff joined the Wesleyan Faculty in 2003 where he holds the Robert K. Schumann Chair of Environmental Studies. He currently chairs the Environmental Studies Major and is Director of the College of the Environment. He teaches courses in Environmental Studies, Tropical Ecology, Aquatic Ecosystem Conservation, and Quantitative Analysis for the departments of Biology and Earth and Environmental Sciences. Chernoff's research centers on the freshwater fishes of the Neotropical region, primarily those in South America in the Amazon. His research includes, ecology, evolutionary biology and conservation. He has also led international teams on expeditions designed to conserve large watersheds of the world, having made more than 32 expeditions in 12 countries. Recently, Professor Chernoff and his students have been working on aquatic ecology and conservation of Connecticut watersheds. In the past he has held professorial and curatorial positions at the Field Museum, University of Chicago, University of Illinois at Chicago, University of Pennsylvania and the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadelphia. He holds visiting positions at Universidad Central de Venezuela. He has authored and co-authored more than 87 scientific articles and books. Chernoff has received a number of awards including the Caleb T. Winchester Outstanding Scholar and Teacher Award in from Xi of Psi Upsilon, Wesleyan University and a Commendation for Excellence in Teaching, University of Chicago in 2000. Chernoff was elected to the Connecticut Academy of Sciences and Engineering in 2005, where he now chairs the Environmental Science and Technology Board. From 1993-1999, he served on the U.S. National Committee for the International Union of Biological Sciences elected by the National Academy of Sciences/National Research Council, and served as Vice-Chairman from 1995-1997 and Chairman from 1997-1999. He serves on the Inland Fish Commission's Endangered and Threatened Fishes Panel for the CT Department of Environmental Protection. Chernoff co-wrote the script for a short documentary film entitled "Understanding Biodiversity" that was awarded finalist status at a number of film festivals, including Cannes, Toronto and Sundance, and received the Silver Apple Award from the American Educational Network. He has served on the boards of a number of community-oriented foundations, including the Confluence Greenway Project of St. Louis, Mo., and as President of the Sustainable Aquatic Research Center. Chernoff served as President of The Jonah Center for Earth and Art, from 2004-2010 in Middletown, CT.Professor of Biology Frederick Cohan studies the evolutionary genetics, ecology, and systematics of bacteria. His principal interests are in the origins of ecological diversity in bacteria and in developing methods for detecting and characterizing newly divergent bacterial lineages. He is developing and testing a diversity of models for the tempo and dynamics of species formation in the bacterial world. He teaches courses at all levels from General Education to Graduate courses, and he has recently developed a course on Global Change and Infectious Disease for the Environmental Studies programs. He was trained in evolutionary genetics, earning his B.S. at Stanford in 1975 and his Ph.D. at Harvard in 1982. He has published over 50 articles in evolutionary genetics and systematics. He is a Professor of Biology at Wesleyan University, where he has been on the faculty for 24 years.Menakka and Essel Bailey '66 Distinguished Visiting Scholar in the College of the Environment Joseph Smolinski was born in St. Paul, MN, and lives and works in New Haven, CT. He is currently a Lecturer in the Department of Art and Design at the University of New Haven. His work has been shown both nationally and internationally in group exhibition venues that include Diverse Works in Houston, TX; MASS MoCA in North Adams, MA; the Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art, Ridgefield, CT; the McDonough Museum of Art, Youngstown, OH; the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, CT; The Cleveland Institute of Art; and the Yale University School of Art, New Haven, CT. Solo exhibition venues include Swarm Gallery in Oakland, CA; Seton Gallery at the University of New Haven, CT; Real Art Ways in Hartford, CT; and ArtSpace in New Haven, CT. His work has been discussed in Art in America, The Boston Globe, The New York Times, and Art Papers, among other publications. In 2012, he was awarded an artist fellowship from the Connecticut Commission of the Arts and an artist resource trust grant from the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation.Associate Professor of History and Science in Society and Feminist, Gender and Sexuality Studies Jennifer Tucker is a social and cultural historian, focusing on British visual history, history and theory of photography, and the historical relationships among science, new visual technologies and civic society. Her research explores several historical sites where the production and circulation of visual representations became important within science, popular culture and now - the law. (Tucker, Nature Exposed: Photography as Eyewitness in Victorian Science, 2006/pbk 2013; and “Identity in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction: The Great Tichborne Trial in the Victorian Visual Imagination,” ms completion date: Nov. 1, 2014). This year she is beginning a new project that traces the historical roots of the use of visual evidence in environmental practice, regulatory policy and law. “Science Against Industry” examines the role of photographs and other visual exhibits used in the scientific investigation of chemical air and river pollution during the second half of the nineteenth century – years that witnessed the passage of the world’s first environmental regulations (e.g. the Rivers Pollution Prevent Act 1876) designed to regulate hazardous waste from modern chemical factories. Drawing upon hundreds of visual representations (drawings, engravings, photographs, graphs, and films) found in British archives and libraries, this research addresses current questions that lie at the heart of several fields and disciplines, including environmental history, public policy and law, Victorian studies, science and technology studies, and modern British history art and visual culture: How, and with what historical consequences, have environmental lawyers, scientists and activists conveyed their ideas graphically? On what complex conditions and activities does the meaning and use of representations and visual displays in legal proceedings depend? How has the introduction of new visual technologies affected the practices of environmental legal and policy decision-making? The findings from this research will be presented this year at conferences in Germany, China, and Russia and at the "Victorian Sustainabilities" conference at the University of Kent and submitted for publication in summer 2014.