I did this last year (and stole the idea from Jeremy Yoder), and rather enjoyed it – so here’s a quantitative look back at the year that’s been, and an opportunity to look ahead.



The number of posts this year. Not as many as last year, but being away for 4 months of field work will do that.  The most viewed:

Post title Page views
Personal academic websites for faculty & grad students: the why, what, and how 4708
Your daily dose of sexism (again) and #ProteomicsSexism 4143
How did we learn that birds migrate (and not to the moon)? A stab in the dark 2790
Beware the academic hipster (or, use what works for you) UPDATED 2262
The advantages of Google Scholar for early-career academics 1726



The total number of visits to The Lab and Field in its 2nd year of existence.  A huge thanks to everyone to drops by.  When I started The Lab and Field back in January 2013, I thought of it as an outlet where I could talk about non-research aspects of academia and science more broadly (sort of like I did as  grad student while waiting for the kettle to boil, or over a cup of tea). I had no idea that y’all would find it as interesting as I did, but I’m glad you do.


2800; 9

The distance, in km, and time, in days, from Cape Town to Tristan da Cunha. I made the journey twice this year, and will do it again in 2015.



The distance, in km, that we relocated for me to take my first permanent job with the RSPB.



The number of job applications submitted this year, the first year since 2010 where I haven’t been looking for work. To say it’s been nice is a bit of an understatement.



Like last year, the number of new papers.  I was fortunate enough to work with some wonderfully prolific colleagues again this year, and here’s hoping the productivity continues in 2015.  This included some exciting (but depressing) work on the effects of climate and ingested plastics on shearwaters in Australia, and seabirds in the North Atlantic, a review of seabird plastic ingestion in Canada, and looking at the dynamics of mercury in a couple of different systems.



My gender gap – the ratio of my female:male coauthors in 2014 – a big improvement on my gender gap of 0.60 calculated last December.



The total number of Tristan Albatross chicks we counted this year. Out of about 1700 nests. In case you were wondering, this is abysmally horrible.


and lastly, a number that will be of increased significance for me in 2015 …


The time, in years, since I picked scientific research as a career, started grad school, came out, and met my husband.  In retrospect, 2005 was a pretty big year, and I’ll reflect on my first decade as a married gay scientist a fair bit in 2015.


May 2015 be prosperous, productive, and successful for all of us.