Rob Dunn

About Rob Dunn

Rob Dunn is a biologist and writer in the Department of Applied Ecology at North Carolina State University. Central to all of his work is the sense that big discoveries lurk not only in faraway tropical forests, but also in our backyards and even bedrooms. The unknown is large and wonderful and Dunn and his collaborators, students, and postdocs love to spend their days in it.

Mapping the ants of the world

Several years ago, Benoit Guénard decided that he was interested in knowing where one kind of ant could be found. Another ant biologist asked. Benoit [...]

By | 2016-11-22T13:46:57+00:00 August 13th, 2014|


Very occasionally, the opportunity arises for a group of people to decide where and how to build a city. In 1792 the legislators of North [...]

By | 2016-11-22T13:46:58+00:00 July 23rd, 2014|

Hot in the ‘Hood

When we build our cities with cement and asphalt, they trap heat. This trapped heat warms our cities, as much, in some cases, as global [...]

By | 2016-11-22T13:47:03+00:00 June 26th, 2014|

Lewis Thomas and the Ants of New York City

Lewis Thomas was a doctor who wrote articles so beautiful everyone forgot he was anything but a writer. Joyce Carol Oates used Thomas’s writing in [...]

By | 2016-11-22T13:47:10+00:00 February 17th, 2014|

He is a wise man who invented beer

It has been a fun set of weeks in the lab. Two weeks ago I discovered ants from our lab had made their way to [...]

By | 2016-11-22T13:47:10+00:00 February 10th, 2014|

Ants Take Over Space Station

A generation ago, the hopes for a colony on the moon or elsewhere beyond the Earth’s atmosphere were great, so great that a replica of [...]

By | 2016-11-22T13:47:11+00:00 January 29th, 2014|

How to turn any dataset into a glowing worm

A few decades ago gene expression, the process by which the code books of genes are turned into proteins, was invisible. It happened in every [...]

By | 2016-11-22T13:47:15+00:00 January 12th, 2014|