During my time at UCLA, I studied astronomy infrastructures- from large, international governing bodies to small research groups at universities. (resulting in this dissertation). I studied people, places, policies, instruments, and knowledge produced from these efforts. I have done field work and interviewed astronomers across the globe, learning a great deal about what it takes to design, build, and deploy telescopes both on earth and in the sky. I’ve had the pleasure of observing all manners of astronomy activity: from visiting both Subaru and Keck telescopes atop Mauna Kea, to the dark basement at Harvard where the old glass plates are being scanned into digital FITS files for preservation purposes. Speaking of FITS, I have given several talks on the history of FITS, most memorably at ESO. I know a lot about the black hole at the center of our galaxy (although so much is still to be known!) making me somewhat interesting as a party guest. I am grateful for scores of astronomers’ willingness to speak to me, explain their research and duties, to show me their instruments and tools they use to do their science.
Along with scientific and technical practices, I am also interested in astronomy data and code sharing practices. I’ll be presenting a paper on this topic in Boras, Sweden, in March.