About Maitri Erwin
I am an energy exploration geoscientist, with an active interest in science education, the recruiting and retention of women in science professions, the public domain and global access to literacy and information.
About this blog: What became VatulBlog in the late 1990s started with essays, BBS messages and emails and continues as a record of my thoughts on and experiences in geoscience, the internet, disaster, diaspora and craft. The site is named Vatul for my South Indian clan, which you can read more about here.
I am adviser to and board member of Project Gutenberg, the oldest publisher of free electronic books. In this capacity, I promise to uphold the project’s mission of “most free books to most people.”
Between August 2005 and March 2009, VatulBlog actively chronicled the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, The Flood and the recovery of the city of New Orleans, and has been used as an example of disaster communication during a time of rapidly-evolving media. A number of my posts from the first post-Katrina year were published in Gallatin & Toulouse Press’s A Howling In The Wires: An Anthology of Writing from Post-Diluvian New Orleans.
I also publish Back Of Town, a blog-community dedicated to the New Orleans-based HBO television series Treme.
I am a founding member of the Society of Exploration Geophysicists Women’s Network and University of Wisconsin Department of Geoscience alumni board member. My essay on integrative innovation in the geosciences was published in Agile Libre’s 52 Things You Should Know About Geophysics.
I am also an occasional contributor to B2L2.com, an online “bark-eating” monthly, where I experiment with writing in vignettes.
Here is a list of writing and interviews.
I was born in Kuwait to hyper-educated Indian parents who love to travel. As a result, I speak and read English, Tamil, Hindi, French, Spanish, Arabic and Sanskrit in that order of fluency. An impending move to the United States was hastened by the Iraqi invasion of Kuwait in 1990.
I have a B.S. in geology from the University of Illinois and a Masters in structural geology [paper] and an interdisciplinary Masters in computational sciences and geophysics from the University of Wisconsin.
My husband, D. Erwin, and I are fans and owners of the Green Bay Packers football team. Together, we have lived in Madison, New Orleans and now Houston, Texas.
You can contact me through email or Twitter and my resume is on LinkedIn and Vizualize. Any opinions I express here and elsewhere online are mine and not those of my employer unless otherwise stated, obviously.