Month: September 2013

David Suzuki, A Life Spent Communicating Science

As far as Canadian public figures go, they don’t get much bigger than David Suzuki–and with a quick look at his CV it’s not hard to see why. The shear breadth of his output and contributions to Canadian society have been so vast and prolific over the decades that it can be difficult to wrap one’s head around everything he has managed to accomplish.

David SuzukiNot only has he built a name for himself as a renowned scientist, an influential environmentalist, the founder of the David Suzuki foundation,  and the best selling author of over 50 books, but he is also one of this country’s most distinguished broadcasters.

For over 30 years, David Suzuki has been our guide to all things science–from technology to the natural world–as the host of CBC’s The Nature of Things, the landmark documentary series now in its 53rd year, which has aired in over 40 countries around the world.

Suzuki’s career in broadcasting goes back even further than his tenure at The Nature the Things. He started his television career with the CBC in 1971 hosting and writing the children’s show Suzuki on Science. And in 1974, it was David Suzuki who developed the popular long running CBC radio science program Quirks and Quarks and acted as that program’s host for its first several years on the air.

Throughout his career as both a broadcaster and as a public figure, David Suzuki has been passionately equipping audiences and the general public with a way to understand science, the natural world, and our place in it. He has been provoking us to grapple with the social ramifications of science and human behaviour on this planet, and finding ways to change our perspective and our hidden assumptions.

For Suzuki, the social ramifications of science are far too great to be treated as a few isolated silos of expertise to be inhabited and understood by a few select academics and researchers. Suzuki On Science
Rather, science, is fundamentally critical to our day to day lives as citizens, as a society, and as a species.  And whether or not we grapple with the issues, and the consequences of what we know to be the case, whether or not we will come to understand that we are not above nature, but one small part of the interconnected complex web of life on this planet – will in a very real sense determine our fate as a species. is not just a matter of understanding the world around us, it’s a matter of survival of the species.

Now in his late 70s, David Suzuki is as outspoken, driven and passionate at always, and shows no signs of slowing down.