1st Quarter

Invasive Species

Invasive species are a growing concern around the globe. Tamarisk beetles, zebra mussels, kudzu – how do we use Earth Observations to determine where invasive species are damaging the local ecosystems, and how do we control these species from spreading? This theme will examine the work scientists and researchers are doing to stop invasive species in their tracks.

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2nd Quarter

Coral Reefs

The coral reefs are facing threats from multiple sources: rising temperatures and bleaching, pollution, and other human disturbances. This theme explores what is happening to the coral reefs in our oceans and how Earth observations can protect these vital marine ecosystems.

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3rd Quarter

Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Explorations

Exploration of the vast oceans calls for underwater robots to free man from laborious and risky adventures on the sea. For our third quarterly theme, we’ll look at how AUVs are leading to discoveries in the deep.

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4th Quarter

60 Years in Space

The year 2017 marks 60 years since Sputnik first circled Earth in October 1957. This theme honors the accomplishments of those six decades and also looks to the future of out-of-this-world observations. Additionally, this theme explores the satellites that make remote Earth Observations possible.

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2018 Monthly Focus

Earthzine seeks contributions to our monthly focus topics. Monthly focus topics complement our in-depth Quarterly Theme coverage, with timely content that highlights developments and news within topical areas.

Articles included within our monthly focus topics are generally 500-1000 words in length and must have a clear alignment with the designated topic. They must be submitted no later than the first week of the month associated with that topic. Contributing to a monthly focus offers a chance for researchers and others working on relevant topics to share their work or observations with an interdisciplinary and global audience.  Our 2018 monthly focus topics and their descriptions are listed below.

If you are interested in contributing, please contact Earthzine Editor at earthzineeditor@ieee.org. Further information and guidelines for submitting articles can be found here.


Crazy Science

What big ideas in science should we be paying attention to? In this theme we’ll showcase zany ideas that might just be crazy enough to work.


Science Fiction and Earth Observation

What do video conferences, earbuds, and waterbeds have in common? They all started as ideas in science fiction novels. In this theme we explore the influence of science fiction on Earth observations.


UN International Year of Sustainable Tourism Development

Our hope for this theme is to bring our readers a travel guide of sorts aimed at tourism that makes practice of conserving and sustainably using the oceans, seas and marine resources for sustainable development.



In honor of National Earthquake Preparedness Month, this theme will examine how Earth observations help us better understand and predict earthquakes, as well as deal with their effects.


Forest migration/tree species

As the climate changes, many species have been observed moving away from the equator toward the poles. This theme explores how even organisms seemingly without mobility — trees — are also shifting their habitats as the Earth warms.


Young Innovators

In this theme, we’ll feature profiles of people younger than 40 making waves in Earth Observations.


Earth Observations Education Programs

Earthzine is proud to host the Virtual Poster Sessions for NASA DEVELOP and provide the Earthzine Writing Fellowship to aspiring science writers. With this theme we discuss the power of Earth observations education programs to groom the next generation of Earth observations scientists and practitioners.


Algal Blooms

Algal blooms are becoming an increasingly pressing topic as fisheries are impacted and drinking water supplies are cut off. This theme looks at how Earth observations are helping us better understand harmful algal blooms and how to mitigate their effects.


OES Oceans ‘17

This mini-theme will focus on the Oceanic Engineering Society’s conference in Anchorage, Alaska, Sept. 18-22. Earthzine staff will offer coverage of the conference and contributions from conference presenters are also welcome. Click here to browse past coverage of OES Oceans.



This mini-theme will focus on the Group on Earth Observations plenary. Earthzine staff will offer coverage of the conference and contributions from conference presenters are also welcome. Click here to browse past coverage of GEO.


Earth Observations in Social Media

Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, Twitter and the blogosphere are just a few places where Earth observations are impacting a wider audience than the scientific community. In this theme we explore the impacts of Earth observations in social media.


Essays on Hope

December’s mini-theme features op-ed articles that are retrospective and forward-looking on how we can use Earth information to better our planet and ourselves. From technological advances to community movements, what gives you hope for a better future?