From the Editor

By Amy Kynman

May 23, 2023

Dear Reader,

A lot has happened since we published our last issue of the Berkeley Science Review in the fall. This past November, academic workers from all 10 campuses of the University of California system and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory went on strike for better pay and benefits. As the research that the BSR strives to cover paused, as we put the final touches on our Fall 2022 issue and distributed the finished magazine on picket lines around campus, I was reminded of our overarching goals.

One of the main aims of the BSR will always be to make science accessible to our entire community—scientists and non-scientists alike. But by placing our magazine in faceless distribution bins and campus buildings and then quickly heading back to lab, we rarely get to see this in action. In respecting the UC strike and instead handing out issues in person at picket lines, we were able to spend time interacting with the people reading our work. We’ve been unable to engage directly with our readers since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, and I’m glad to have been reminded that it’s something we should prioritize moving forward.

Effective science communication aside, the temporary halt to the research we cover reemphasized the significance of the work done on campus, and more importantly, the people who do it. In his first letter from the editor, our founder, Eran Karmon, wrote, “Our contributors represent all the best of Berkeley. They’re graduate students and postdoctoral fellows from many, many campus departments, from biophysics to journalism to literature. The amount of combined higher education represented … is staggering. And it comes through in the thoughtful, original, and interesting articles in this issue of the BSR.”

I truly hope that this issue is no different, and that we highlight the contribution of those conducting the research at Berkeley, whether they be the subject, writer, designer, or editor of an article. In “Sleep science from A to Zzzzzs,” Elizabeth Lineberry highlights the passion of the researchers at the Center for Human Sleep Science, and how they’re working to better understand the effects of sleep deprivation on our health. And in “Working against an atomic clock” and “Bee-ing deadly,” Appie Peterson and Diler Haji recount a day “From the Field,” giving us an honest and thrilling look into their work with plutonium and poisonous plants, respectively.

Alongside our exceptional authors, there is a plethora of other contributors to thank. Our editing team has worked hard with our writers to guide and refine their work. The design team, led by our Art Director, Liya Oster, have produced exceptional artwork to further compliment the research it portrays. Our managing editor, Sophia Friesen, has expertly managed the BSR finances for the last two issues, and we’d all like to wish them luck with their upcoming graduation and future endeavors. Lastly, I want to thank all of our donors and subscribers for their generosity, particularly the Karmon family for their ongoing support. We hope you enjoy reading Issue 44 of the Berkeley Science Review as much as we enjoyed making it!


Amy Kynman

This article is part of the Spring 2023 issue.

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