DISCCRS Co-Director

C. Susan Weiler

C. Susan Weiler

Leave of Absence 2015 - 2016

Senior Research Scientist    Whitman College                   Office for Earth System Studies Walla Walla, WA 99362

Tel: 509-527-5948
Email: weilercs@whitman.edu




                                                                                                                             Scenes from DISCCRS VII SymposiumI

While on Leave of Absence from Whitman College, I am serving as a Program Director for the National Science Foundation  within the Office of Integrative Activities; Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research, EPSCOR

My work over the past two decades focuses on Earth system science and the mentoring and training of early career Ph.D. researchers to work collaboratively as part of interdisciplinary research teams. My research interests include oceanography, Earth system science, climate change and sustainability. I currently focus on professional training in collaborative skills such as communication, facilitation and team building.

Curriculum Vitae

I obtained a Ph.D. in oceanography from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography after competing a B.A. with high honors in biology from the University of California at San Diego. My Ph.D. and early research involved coastal and open-ocean ecology, using physiological approaches to assess plankton community structure and function. Following three years of postdoctoral research at the University of British Columbia, Canada, University of St. Andrews, Scotland, and the University of Oslo, Norway, I affiliated with Whitman College as a Research Associate. In addition to advising students, supervising senior research projects, and teaching both lower- and upper-division undergraduate courses in environmental studies, biologyy and the humanities, I became involved in various activities at the national and international level. My research has been supported primarily through grants from the National Science Foundation (NSF), National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Office of Naval Research (ONR).

During a 1987/88 rotation as a program officer the NSF Division of Polar Programs, I provided leadership and oversight for development of the NSF UV Monitoring Network and the first call for proposals dealing with the biological consequences of the Antarctic ozone hole.  During 1988-1990 I served as associate editor for The Oceanography Society’s (TOS) publication, Oceanography. As the first Executive Director for the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography (ASLO, 1990-1999) I developed the infrastructure for a modern and vibrant volunteer-based organization. I also founded and edited the ASLO Bulletin. I have held appointed positions with the American Geophysical Union (AGU) and the American Institute of Physics (AIP), and both appointed and elected positions with Sigma Xi, the Scientific Research Society. I began to work intensively with recent Ph.D. graduates in 1992, when I founded a symposium series, DIALOG, to foster collaborations among early career limnologists and oceanographers. I also undertook initiatives to enhance diversity among undergraduate and graduate students across the aquatic sciences.

Beginning in 1999, my work expanded from aquatic science to Earth system science, and I founded the DISCCRS (pronounced discourse) initiative in 2002 to foster international, interdisciplinary understanding and collaborations across the full spectrum of natural and social sciences. The goals of DISCCRS are to identify outstanding early career scholars and foster interdisciplinary collaborative research to catalyze understanding of climate change in the context of the Earth system and the translation of knowledge into effective action.

The common theme in my work is the development of research, communication, team-building and other professional skills to catalyze the transition of graduate students into independent scholars who can work effectively in a collaborative, interdisciplinary research environment and to build successful relationships with leaders in their community, the media, and policy makers. While I have worked mostly with recent Ph.D. graduates, my results are equally applicable for undergraduate and graduate students.

I completed a second rotation with NSF during 2009-2012, working with various interdisciplinary and cross-directorate programs such as Emerging Topics in Biogeochemical Cycles (ETBC); Environment, Society and the Economy (ESE); Major Research Instrumentation (MRI); Science, Education and the Environment Fellows (SEES Fellows); Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU); Integrative Graduate Education and Research Training (IGERT); Graduate Research Fellowships (GRF); and NSF’s Career-Life Balance Initiativ (CLI). I began a third rotation with NSF in September, 2015, to serve as a Program Director with the NSF Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR).

I have been honored with several awards including ASLO’s Distinguished Service and Excellence in Education awards and three NSF Director’s Awards for Collaborative Integration.

SELECTED PUBLISHED PAPERS (see Curriculum Vitae  for complete list)

Milman, S.B., J.M. Marston, S.E. Godsey, J. Bolson, H.P. Jones and C.S. Weiler 2015. Scholarly motivations to conduct interdisciplinary climate change research. Journal of Environmental Studies and Sciencesdoi:10.1007/s13412-015-0307-z. http://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s13412-015-0307-z

National Science Foundation. 2012. Balancing the Scale: The National Science Foundation CLB Initiative. NSF Family Friendly Policies Working Group. Arlington, VA. C. S. Weiler was one of the six members of the NSF Family Friendly Policies Working Group and co-authored the report.

Weiler, C. S., J. Keller and C. Olex. 2011. Personality type differences between Ph.D. climate researchers and the general public: Implications for effective communication. Climatic Change 112(2):233-242. DOI 10.1007/s10584-011-0205-7. http://disccrs.org/files/WeilerEtAl_2011_ClimaticChange_MBTI.pdf

Mitchell, R.B. and C.S. Weiler. 2011. Developing next-generation climate-change scholars: The DISCCRS experience. J. Environmental Studies and Sciences I:54-62. http://disccrs.org/files/2011-JournalEnvironmentalStudiesSciences.pdf

Weiler, C.S., S.D. Drobot and J. Baeseman, 2008. Final Report, New Generation of Polar Researcher Symposium. http://apecs.is/images/stories/ngpr/documents/ipy-ngpr-report.pdf

Berkman, P.A., D.W.H. Walton and C.S. Weiler, 2008. Antarctic Treaty Summit to focus on global science policy lessons. Eos 89(42):406.  

Weiler, C.S. 2007. Meeting Ph.D. graduates’ needs in a changing global environment. Eos 88(13):149,151. http://disccrs.org/sites/default/files/Weiler_Eos_2007.pdf

Weiler, C.S. 2003. Meeting the Needs of Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Graduates in a Changing Global Environment. Workshop Report. http://disccrs.org/files/biocomplexity/BiocomplexityWorkshopReport.pdf  and webpage: http://disccrs.org/files/biocomplexity/index.html

Weiler, C.S. 2001. Minorities in the aquatic sciences (MAS): Establishing a database and electronic resources. L&O Bulletin 10(3):54-55.

Weiler, C.S. and P.A. Penhale (editors), 1994. Ultraviolet Radiation in Antarctica: Measurements and Biological Effects. American Geophysical Union Antarctic Research Series Vol. 62, 257 pp.

Weiler, C.S. 1992. Effects of ozone-related increases in UV-B radiation on marine phytoplankton. Pp. 16 - 21 in, Global Change Research: Ozone Depletion and its Impacts, Hearing Before the Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, United States Senate. U.S. Government Printing Office No. 54-831cc, 88 pp.

Weiler, C.S. and P.H. Yancey, 1992.  Dual-career couples and academic science.  Journal of College Science Teaching 21(4):217-222. http://disccrs.org/files/Dual-Career.pdf

Weiler, C.S. 1991. What controls phytoplankton production in nutrient-rich areas of the open sea? Report from a workshop held February 22-23, 1991, San Marcos, California. American Society of Limnology and Oceanography. 17 pp. and Limnology and Oceanography, 1991 Volume 36(8):1507-1970.         


U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF)

GEO Directorate for Geosciences

PLR Division of Polar Programs

SBE Directorate for Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences

National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA)

Earth Science Program


Scenes from DISCCRS VII Symposium