The name Undark arises from a murky, century-old mingling of science and commerce — one that resulted in a radium-based industrial and consumer product, called Undark, 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, international audience.
Undark is not interested in “science communication” or related euphemisms, but in true journalistic coverage of the sciences.
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 in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
DEBORAH BLUM, Publisher
TOM ZELLER JR., Editor in Chief
JANE ROBERTS, Assistant Editor
DAVID CORCORAN, Senior Editor
ANAR BADALOV, Communications Manager
BETTINA M. URCUIOLI, Business Manager
ROBIN LLOYD, Senior Writer
MICHAEL SCHULSON, Columnist
INGFEI CHEN, Columnist
KASHA PATEL, Podcast Host
LYDIA CHAIN, Podcast Producer
Editors at large:
BROOKE BOREL, ROBIN HENIG, JOHN MONTORIO, LOIS PARSHLEY, SARA TALPOS, SCOTT VEALE
Charles M. Blow, Shannon Brownlee, Raychelle Burks, Dan Fagin, Felice Frankel, David Kaiser, Alan Lightman, Melissa Nobles, David Quammen, Mary Roach, Phillip Sharp, Rebecca Skloot, George Whitesides, Carl Zimmer