On a guided tour of the Transantarctic Mountains, MCM Co-PI and scientist Byron Adams shows us how curiosity-driven scientific exploration leads to a better understanding of existential questions, like climate change, and even the boundary conditions for life on Earth. But as with public support for the arts and education, the downstream economic benefits of basic research are impossible to measure except in the context of our hopes for a brighter future. Byron Adams is a biologist who loves searching for patterns in the natural world and then figuring out the processes by which they came to be. He is a big fan of science education and curiosity-driven, exploratory research. With the support of the US National Science Foundation, Byron has spent the past 20+ years studying the terrestrial ecosystems of Antarctica. His work sheds light on the organisms that live there, how they survive such harsh conditions and how they are responding to climate-driven environmental changes. As a professor at Brigham Young University, Byron oversees the graduate biology program and teaches courses in introductory biology, molecular biology, evolutionary medicine, coevolutionary analysis, and how to thrive in grad school. Raised in Susanville, California, he did his undergraduate work at BYU, Ph.D. at the University of Nebraska, and a postdoc at the University of California-Davis. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.
Watch Byron's TEDx talk here: https://youtu.be/C62-noiEYNA