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Message from the Director

Scott W. Tinker

Measures of quality in academia include such things as reputation, impact, and reach.

Reputation is built from participation in professional meetings; publication in journals and books; awarding of medals and fellowships; and competing for and receiving funding from various government agencies, industries, and foundations. Impact can be harder to quantify but includes citations in the published literature, patents, licensing and commercialization, and in some cases real-world application of research.

But what is reach, and why does it matter? At the Bureau, our global reach begins with staff diversity: cultural, political, religious, socioeconomic, and educational. Over 25 nations from six continents are represented on our permanent staff. Postdocs and students broaden that representation further. These talented individuals serve as a living network of emissaries weaving the Bureau into the fabric of universities, industry, governments, and the global public.

Reach is also defined by geography. Geology knows no geopolitical boundaries, and our reach in the field is literally and figuratively boundless. Fieldwork is conducted on mountains and in canyons; along coasts and on islands; across deserts and glaciers; in oceans, lakes, and rivers; from the air, on land, and under the sea. We even go beyond global boundaries to investigate other planets and moons.

Reach also involves science. Bureau professionals have backgrounds in the geoscience disciplines of geology, geophysics, seismology, petrophysics, geochemistry, and more. Our ranks further include petroleum, chemical, mechanical, and civil engineers; energy and environmental economists; doctors of medicine; and biologists.

Why is reach important? Because reach measures relevance and influence. In academia there exists the risk of becoming isolated—somewhat walled off from the world in a knowledge quest. Reach knocks down walls and builds global pathways.

We are privileged to be part of the Bureau of Economic Geology at The University of Texas at Austin. It is not only important but in many ways our duty to share our ideas and knowledge, and to do our best to make the world a better place.

We strive to do that every day.

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