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Undark is a non-profit,
editorially independent digital magazine
exploring the intersection of science and society.
It is published with generous funding
from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation,
through its Knight Science Journalism Fellowship Program
Undark was co-founded in 2016,
under the auspices
of the Knight Science Journalism Program,
by journalists Deborah Blum and Tom Zeller Jr.
century-old mingling of science and commerce
— one that resulted
in a radium-based industrial and consumer product,
that was both awe-inspiring and,
as scientists would only later prove, toxic and deadly.
We appropriate the name as a signal to readers
that our magazine will explore science
not just as a “gee-whiz” phenomenon,
but as a frequently wondrous, sometimes contentious,
and occasionally troubling byproduct of human culture.
As such, the intersection of science and society
— the place where science is articulated
in our politics and our economics;
or where it is made potent and real
in our everyday lives —
is a fundamental part of our mission at Undark.
As journalists, we recognize
that science can often be politically,
economically and ethically fraught,
even as it captures the imagination
and showcases the astonishing scope
of human endeavor.
Undark will therefore aim
to explore science in both light and shadow,
and to bring that exploration to a broad,
Undark is not interested in “science communication”
or related euphemisms,
but in true journalistic coverage of the sciences.
Undark’s journalism has been anthologized
in the “Best American Science and Nature Writing” book series,
and our work is routinely republished
by some of the world’s most respected media outlets,
including The Atlantic, Scientific American, Smithsonian,
NPR, Wired, Quartz, Salon, and Slate.
- May 2, 2023