The Half-Earth Project is proud to announce Piotr Naskrecki as the inaugural Half-Earth Chair.
The Half-Earth Chairs and Scholars Program supports biodiversity research globally and engages the world’s brightest minds in the Half-Earth Project mission.
Chairs are selected for their research leadership and ability to be role models and mentors for the next generation of biodiversity researchers in their region and globally. Chairs accelerate awareness of the unique importance of biodiversity in their local and regional areas by building research capacity and mentoring junior researchers.
Inaugural Half-Earth Chair Piotr Naskrecki is an entomologist, conservation biologist, author, and photographer based at the Museum of Comparative Zoology at Harvard University. He currently directs the E.O. Wilson Biodiversity Laboratory at Gorongosa National Park in Mozambique, where he trains a new cadre of Mozambican biologists and conservationists, and helps rebuild the park, which suffered during the recent civil war in that country.
Dr. Naskrecki’s work focuses on projects that include invertebrate animals in conservation practices and he strives to promote understanding, appreciation, and conservation of “non-charismatic” animals. In his popular writing and photography, he tries to capture both their beauty and roles as vital, often critically important members of the planet’s ecosystems. He is one of the founding members of the International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCP) and his photographs and nature writing have been published in a number of national and international publications, including The Smithsonian Magazine, Natural History, National Wildlife, National Geographic, BBC Wildlife Magazine, BBC Knowledge, Terre Sauvage, Time magazine, Ranger Rick, and many others. His books illustrate a multitude of threats faced by invertebrate animals and other organisms (“The Smaller Majority”, “A Window on Eternity”), explore ancient organisms and ecosystems of the globe (“Relics”), and his most recent title (“Hidden Kingdom”) showcases the diverse insect fauna of Costa Rica.
Dr. Naskrecki will serve a four-year term as Half-Earth Chair. Following his term, he will assume tenured membership on the Half-Earth Council.