2005 RECIPIENT: Online

AAAS Science Journalism Awards

2005 RECIPIENT: Online

Daniel Grossman
Fantastic Forests: The Balance Between Nature & People of Madagascar” 3 June 2005

The judges were impressed by the lively quality of Grossman’s work, which looks at the struggle to preserve biodiversity in Madagascar, an African island smaller than Texas but home to a prodigious diversity of fauna and flora more varied than that of all of North America. Grossman introduces online visitors to a rich catalogue of critters, including the fossa, a remarkable predator that looks like a cross between a cat and a dog and loves to snack on lemurs, the tree-dwelling primates for which Madagascar is famous.

Diedtra Henderson of the Boston Globe said Grossman gives “a clear sense of discovery, wonder and excitement” in his reporting, including “captivating details and a nice use of audio, visual and written story telling.” Grossman’s reporting from the jungles of Madagascar includes compelling video interviews with working scientists.

Jody Brannon, the executive producer for news at USA Today.com, said Grossman’s entry is “richly interactive, with important research that makes learning fun.”

Grossman, a AAAS prize winner for the second time, said he chose Madagascar as a venue for his reporting after previous trips to Antarctica and Greenland. “I decided I wanted to go to a more tropical place,” he said. Grossman, who has developed his multimedia toolkit during his travels, did two video interviews with each subject in Madagascar in addition to the interviews for his online text stories.