Congressional Science Fellowship
Hall of Fame
Mark Gabriel Little
Little's diverse background in earth science, public policy, and social entrepreneurship provides the basis for an exciting year of service. Little graduated magna cum laude from Harvard University in 2001 after completing coursework in environmental geochemistry and a research project in planetary science at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. After a brief respite coaching track in New York, he began graduate school at Rice University, investigating the geochemical mechanisms of soil formation in Tanzania and the theoretical relationships between physical erosion and chemical weathering. Little also developed and taught courses on climate, energy, and sustainable development from a natural resources perspective. Concurrent with his graduate studies, Little organized forums at the James A. Baker III Institute for Public Policy on such topics as human trafficking, military interrogation, and domestic HIV/AIDS.
After completing a Ph.D. in geochemistry, Little spent one year in Beijing as a Luce Scholar, researching organic air pollution and lecturing on climate and energy in the Department of Urban and Environmental Sciences at Peking University. This experience not only provided an immersion into a distinctly different society but also fresh perspectives on life, politics, and science in the United States. While in China, Little worked with Chinese colleagues to create an international organization dedicated to addressing climate change and other global environmental issues by engaging all stakeholders. Since returning to the United States, Little has been working as a postdoctoral research associate at Duke University, determining the potential environmental impacts of geologic carbon sequestration, and consulting for the University of North Carolina and the Biofuels Center of North Carolina on a Strategic Crop Initiative.
Little’s pursuits, scientific or otherwise, are motivated by the belief that both knowledge and the will to act are required to overcome problems like climate change as well as to realize the promise of non-traditional energy production. He hopes that this fellowship will provide him the opportunity to give a strong voice to the knowledge of the scientific community amongst the din of diverse and competing voices on the Hill.