Edith Widder combines her expertise in research and technological innovation with a commitment to stopping and reversing the degradation of our marine environment.

Why you should listen

A specialist in bioluminescence, Edith Widder helps design and invent new submersible instruments and equipment to study bioluminescence and enable unobtrusive observation of deep-sea environments. Her innovative tools for exploration have produced footage of rare and wonderful bioluminescent displays and never-before-seen denizens of the deep, including, most recently, the first video ever recorded of the giant squid, Architeuthis, in its natural habitat.

In 2005 she founded the Ocean Research & Conservation Association (ORCA), which is dedicated to protecting aquatic ecosystems and the species they sustain through the development of innovative technologies and science-based conservation action.;  In an effort to protect and revitalize the ocean she loves she has been focusing on developing tools for finding and tracking pollution -- a major threat to all of our water ecosystems and ultimately to human health. She was awarded a MacArthur "genius" grant in 2006.

In 2012, Widder was among the team that filmed the giant squid (Architeuthis) for the first time in its home ocean.

What others say

"One of the remarkable things about Edie is that, for a biologist, she is the most technologically savvy scientist I’ve ever come across." — Bruce Robison, a senior scientist at the Monterey Bay Aquarium Research Institute in California

Edith Widder on the TED Blog
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Playlist

10 talks on creatures from the deep

March 5, 2013

Imagine a squid so big that, when sprawled out, it is the size of a two-story house. Edith Widder has now seen this enormous ocean creature, once the stuff of nautical legend, six times. In today’s talk, Widder shares how we now have filmed proof of the giant squid’s existence, thanks to a mission conducted […]

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Oceans

Learn more about ocean filmmaker Mike deGruy

March 5, 2013

On February 4, 2012, ocean filmmaker and educator Mike deGruy was killed in a helicopter crash while on assignment in Australia, along with pilot and filmmaker Andrew Wright. DeGruy (pronounced “degree”) was an Emmy-winning science documentarian and a mainstay of Shark Week; he also worked on James Cameron documentaries about the Titanic and Bismarck and […]

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Science

There are giants in the ocean: Edie Widder at TED2013

February 26, 2013

There are giants in the ocean, and we can prove it, begins marine biologist Edie Widder on stage at TED. Widder first became involved with TED when she gave a talk on life in the underwater world at Mission Blue in 2010, as part of Sylvia Earle’s TED Prize wish. There she met the late […]

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Quotes from Edith Widder

The teeth on [the viperfish] are so long that if they closed inside the mouth of the fish, it would actually impale its own brain.
Edith Widder
Mission Blue Voyage • 475K views Apr 2010
Fascinating, Beautiful