Microbial Literacy

What do people know about microbes? How do they perceive microbial diversity and the impacts of microbes on society? What are the best ways for scientists and the media to speak to the public about microbes? How do past experiences and educational opportunities impact your perceptions of microbes?

Our lab is interested in addressing these questions in an attempt to better measure and subsequently improve microbial literacy. We also are passionate about outreach and writing.

Here are some examples of previous work from lab members:

In collaboration with Bronwen Percival of Neal’s Yard Dairy, Benjamin Wolfe co-founded MicrobialFoods.org, a website that digests the science of fermented foods. With profiles of people who make or study microbial foods, microbe guides with information on specific microbes used in fermentations, and feature articles that explore important topics in depth, we bring you the latest news and information about the science of microbial foods. 
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Chefology – Boston magazine
An online and print series written with chef Scott Jones on the biology of food, with a strong focus on fermentation and the role of microbes in cooking.


Lucky Peach
From the smell of the seashore to salami microbiology, Benjamin Wolfe has had the pleasure of writing about microbes and food for many issues of the magazine Lucky Peach. LP two panel-02