Fostering Excellence in Science Communication

Metcalf Institute for Marine & Environmental Reporting has a global reputation for providing science training for journalists and communications training for scientists.  The Institute, part of the world-renowned University of Rhode Island Graduate School of Oceanography, is located on the URI’s 200-acre Narragansett Bay Campus.

Metcalf Institute’s Mission

The mission of Metcalf Institute is to expand accurate environmental news coverage through innovative training and resources for journalists, researchers, and other science communicators to engage more people in discourse about science and the environment.


Metcalf Institute Programs

Science Seminars for Journalists
Metcalf’s Science Seminars for Journalists are held at URI and around the country on pressing environmental topics, including climate change, coastal pollution and marine biodiversity.

Metcalf Institute webinars feature leading researchers and policy makers in a variety of fields to help journalists and news consumers make sense of complex science and environment issues.

Peter B. Lord Seminars on the Environment
The Peter B. Lord Seminars for southern New England journalists help journalists better understand critically important environmental issues by enhancing their understanding of the science behind the stories they cover.

Annual Science Immersion Workshop for Journalists
The Annual Science Immersion Workshop is a comprehensive, hands-on learning experience designed to give journalists opportunities to explore and understand the impacts of global change in coastal ecosystems at  the University of Rhode Island’s Graduate School of Oceanography.

Training for Researchers and Other Science Communicators
Effective communication about the significance of scientific findings is essential to increasing public support for research and engaging citizens in environmental issues.

Training Programs at Journalism and Science Conferences
Metcalf Institute works with partner organizations to develop specialized training programs at professional conferences for both journalists and scientists. Programs range from panels and seminars on relevant scientific topics for journalists to interactive communication training sessions designed to help researchers strengthen their communication skills.

Public Lectures
Metcalf hosts public lectures on a range of environmental topics including the Annual Public Lecture Series featuring top scientists, journalists and policy makers on environmental issues of the day.


Metcalf programs and resources are underwritten by public and private foundations, a modest endowment, and private donations managed by the URI Foundation, a 501(c)(3) organization.


The Metcalf Institute endowment was established at the University of Rhode Island in 1997 with funding from three media organizations: The Providence Journal Charitable Foundation, the A.H. Belo Corp., parent company of The Providence Journal, and the Philip L. Graham Fund. The Telaka Foundation provided additional funding in 1998.

Metcalf Institute was named in honor of Michael P. Metcalf, the late publisher of The Providence Journal, who was keenly interested in marine and environmental issues and was known for his integrity, vision, and high standards for journalism. The Metcalf Institute endowment is managed by the University of Rhode Island Foundation, a nonprofit, tax-exempt charitable corporation.

University of Rhode Island
Graduate School of Oceanography

At the URI Graduate School of Oceanography (GSO), researchers address scientific questions of local, national, and international significance, including climate change, hurricanes, air and water pollution, fisheries depletion, and the need for new technologies for undersea research and exploration.

The campus has grown steadily since the founding of the URI Narragansett Marine Laboratory in 1936. Most recently, the Ocean Science & Exploration Center houses the Inner Space Center, which enables researchers and students to monitor, track and disseminate information from oceanographic expeditions in real time via satellite telecommunications.

Contact Us

Metcalf Institute for Marine & Environmental Reporting
University of Rhode Island
Graduate School of Oceanography
218 South Ferry Road
Narragansett, RI 02882

Metcalf Institute is located in the Graduate School of Oceanography’s Coastal Institute, Room 127.  Directions may be found here.