Special Focus: Research during a Pandemic

Research during a Pandemic: ECR perspectives

The COVID-19 pandemic has brought with it a host of challenges for everyone. At Cultured Scene, we were particularly interested in how the pandemic and resulting quarantines and lockdowns have affected early-career researchers. We asked academics from different fields and at different stages of their careers the same six questions about how the pandemic has impacted them.

Read More

A tribe of poets answered me

An unfortunate side effect of undertaking a PhD is that hobbies are often left by the wayside. We have every intention of carrying them with us on our long and winding academic roads, but somehow they fall from our pockets. By the time we have noticed, the hike back to them can appear too arduous to be worth the effort.

Read More

The ‘art’ of keeping sane: a PhD caught in a pandemic

To think that a month ago, I lived happily amidst a few people, starting my days early in the sticky warmth of tropical sunshine, enjoying cups of chai, watching for birds, picking up and playing with wind-dispersed seeds. All of this in a small village in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands on the far east […]

Read More

Fieldwork in times of Corona

Like everything about this global crisis, this winter’s field trip was two parts surreal, one part seemingly arbitrary decisions. The surreal yolk was, and is, the tension between reality and my lived experience, between daily news and my own comforts, posters advocating hand washing in areas with no running water, between stress and the dissolution […]

Read More
Pitch to Publication

Dolphins mind the shell: About an innovative foraging strategy that spreads beyond the mother-calf bond

Being part of the ‘Dolphin Innovation Project’, Sonja Wild was privileged to study the fascinating behaviour of the Shark Bay dolphins in Western Australia. To Cultured Scene, Sonja provided some insight into her study on ‘shelling’, a novel foraging strategy that is transmitted via social learning. The whole study by Sonja and her colleagues has recently been published in Current Biology.

Read More

Common cuttlefish learn to master the “prawn-in-the-tube” test by observing conspecifics

Eduardo Sampaio shared his newest findings on social learning in the mostly solitary common cuttlefish with Cultured Scene. The whole study has recently been published in Animal Cognition.

Read More

Of sharks and their ability to learn from others

Catarina Vila Pouca spoke to Cultured Scene about her findings on social learning in juvenile Port Jackson sharks that have been published in Animal Behaviour earlier this year.

Read More

Digging for Victory

Alba Motes Rodrigo discusses her recent publication with Cultured Scene.

Read More

Family Ties

Kinbank – a new database for kinship terms from around the world The words we use to describe are family are such a visceral part of life that the thought that it might be organised differently is rarely considered. For example, if you’re reading this you speak English and are likely to live in a […]

Read More
Interviews

Prestige: Simple, maybe, but not easy.

The concept of prestige in social learning can be difficult to address, and even more-so in the context of scientific practice. But a rumination of The Prestige as presented in Christopher Nolan’s film brings some resolution to conceptual tensions and inspires some real magic worthy of the term.

Read More

Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age

Cultured Scene interviews Alberto Acerbi about his new book, Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age.

Read More

A tribe of poets answered me

An unfortunate side effect of undertaking a PhD is that hobbies are often left by the wayside. We have every intention of carrying them with us on our long and winding academic roads, but somehow they fall from our pockets. By the time we have noticed, the hike back to them can appear too arduous to be worth the effort.

Read More

The ‘art’ of keeping sane: a PhD caught in a pandemic

To think that a month ago, I lived happily amidst a few people, starting my days early in the sticky warmth of tropical sunshine, enjoying cups of chai, watching for birds, picking up and playing with wind-dispersed seeds. All of this in a small village in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands on the far east […]

Read More

Fieldwork in times of Corona

Like everything about this global crisis, this winter’s field trip was two parts surreal, one part seemingly arbitrary decisions. The surreal yolk was, and is, the tension between reality and my lived experience, between daily news and my own comforts, posters advocating hand washing in areas with no running water, between stress and the dissolution […]

Read More
How Research Works

Why experiments are stupid but we need more of them

Most of us are excited about social learning in the real world. How do the dolphins of Shark Bay learn to fish with sponges, do chimpanzee mothers teach their young how to crack open nuts, can starting moves in the board game Go or formations in football really be said to “evolve” – and what […]

Read More

The Publishing Black Box: What happens after you click Submit?

Every one of us researchers has, as some point in their career, to go through the process of submitting a paper and all those who have submitted – and even those who as yet have not – know some detail of what happens behind the curtains. But who really knows the whole process? Here we try to get into the details of what happens from submission to the final response.

Read More

Work-Life Balance

Our resident Agony Aunt offers guidance on the key questions bothering early-career researchers, with additional advice crowd-sourced from Twitter. In this edition: Work-life (or, life-work) balance!

Read More

How to Master Publishing

Our resident Agony Aunt offers guidance on the key questions bothering early-career researchers, with additional advice crowd-sourced from Twitter. In this edition: Publishing!

Read More

How to make the most of your first academic conference?

Our resident Agony Aunt offers guidance on the crucial questions bothering early-career researchers, with additional advice crowd-sourced from Twitter.

Read More
Events, Places and People

Faces of ESLR: Ahana Fernandez

Language, more than anything else, defines human nature. Language appears to be unique in the animal kingdom and, thus, the question of how and why language evolved is one of the most fascinating research questions for me. However, it is not just human language that fascinates me but also vocal (social) communication in various social […]

Read More

Faces of ELSR: Samin Gokcekus

I actually find it difficult to write pieces like this one because my interests are very broad. I believe that any topic can be interesting if you take the time to understand it, and I hope to spend the rest of my research career bringing together my knowledge and experiences from different fields to find […]

Read More

Faces of ESLR: Jonathan St-Onge

I just started a PhD in computational social science at the Centre Marc Bloch in Berlin. My research focuses on so-called echo chambers, but I am also interested in fragmentation of online public spaces more generally. The idea of echo chambers is kind of intuitive, at first. They are metaphorical chambers on the internet that […]

Read More