Over the holidays, I FINALLY managed to update my website (I think it’s been 2 years since I added anything new…I dunno. The dates have gotten foggy since COVID lockdowns).
Doing all the updates took a while, but the process of selecting portfolio items, and reminding myself of all the energy invested and the work completed, was very rewarding.
In particular, I am super proud of the growth and reach we’ve managed to achieve with Down to Earth: A podcast for Geoscientists by Geoscientists.
As I write this blog, our podcast has been ranked:
- In the top 10% most popular shows out of 3,260,732 podcasts globally (January 2024, ListenNotes.com)
- #48 of the top 50 Earth Sciences podcasts (July 2023, podbay.fm)
- #2 of the 15 Best Earth Science Podcasts worth listening to in both 2023 and 2024 (January 2024, Feedspot.com).
Since launching the podcast in 2021, we’ve seen listeners tune in from over 86 different countries. We’ve also been ranked #1 in “Best Idols Podcast” (Feedspot, 2022) and have appeared in the top 15 Earth Sciences podcasts in countries including Cameroon, Japan, India, Colombia, Greece, the Philippines, Latvia, Austria, the United Kingdom, and Germany.
The thing I am most proud of when it comes to these rankings is that all this growth and reach has primarily been achieved organically. Our immediate team, the volunteer social media ambassadors of the IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society, and the guests who have appeared on our show, have all worked hard to encourage distribution across social media, through personal networks, and even at conferences! And our work has paid off – we’re now at a point where complete strangers are randomly stumbling across the podcast!
The funny thing is that, before this project, I never imagined I would be the producer of an international podcast about Geoscience. What began with me receiving a request to submit a proposal for a series of promotional videos back in July 2020 has since morphed into a very rewarding, informative, and rich podcast series focused on a topic I initially knew nothing about. But I’ve learned a lot along the way.
Over five different seasons, we’ve explored the challenges of being a woman in STEM (Season 1), the intricacies of remote sensing technologies (Season 2), the ways scientists are tackling wicked problems affecting our climate (Season 3), the growing field of Open Science (Season 4), and how scientists are contributing to our survival in the face of global warming (Season 5).
We’ve interviewed people from around the world, including business owners, professors, students, and researchers at national space agencies like NASA and DLR. I’ve personally been incredibly honoured that these folks have trusted us to share their research and stories especially when, for a surprising number of our interviewees, it’s been their first time doing a media interview!
As Professor Christopher Jackson points out in Season 4, Episode 8, there’s a lot of stress associated with sharing one’s science with the media, even for seasoned science communicators like him!
Not only have we explored different topics each season, but we’ve also had the opportunity to experiment, both in our audio production–like crafting binaural soundscapes in Season 3–and in our graphic design–like the unique, multi-layered images elucidating concepts in open science (sample below).
On a personal level, I’ve strengthened my audio editing skills, enhanced my ability to communicate complex scientific concepts, streamlined my pre-production process, and further developed my documentary storytelling skills. I’ve also had the wonderful opportunity to work with two amazingly talented collaborators: Stephanie Tumampos, our intrepid podcast host, and Mailyne Briggs of Kilam Media, our creativity-infused graphic designer.
Overall, working on this podcast has been a very rewarding experience and it’s exciting to take this moment to appreciate all the people and work that has made the project so successful.
I truly look forward to seeing what new avenues our podcast explores next!
Have a suggestion for a future episode topic? Let me know! Email me at NicoleBedfordFilms @ gmail.com!