A Personalized Kickstarter for One Marine Biologist
Posted on Mar 21st, 2011
Wallace "J" Nichols is crowdsourcing his life's work. And saving his home in the process.
It's difficult to make it as an independent scientist. You have the freedom to study whatever you want, but don't have the financial security that comes with employment at a large institution. That's why Wallace "J" Nichols, founder of Ocean Revolution and research associate at the California Academy of Sciences, almost had to sell his home three months ago. Instead of searching for a full-time job with benefits, Nichols opted to continue his independent research--with a little help from his tribe.
Nichols's Blue Mind Tribe project launched last December as a platform to allow Nichols to continue his work, which includes documenting ocean disasters, organizing viral ocean awareness campaigns, and organizing ocean-related conferences. The project is simple: Anyone who supports Nichols's work can become one of his tribe by offering up a monthly contribution. Different contribution levels come with different rewards. A $25 per month contribution, for example, yields a signed copy of Nichols's children's book, Chelonia: Return of the Sea Turtle, while a $1,000 contribution offers the promise of joining the marine biologist on an upcoming research expedition.