Some call him the father of modern plant genetics, a direct descendent of Darwin, Linnaeus, and Mendel. He shook the world with his concept of biodiversity. He amassed the largest collection of seeds, some 250,000 collections from all over the world, and when he died in 1943, his theories had transformed not only genetics, but botany, agronomy, geography, and anthropology. Nikolai Ivanovich Vavilov was a Russian geneticist who pioneered what now seems like a very obvious theory: in order to breed better crops we need to study and use the total genetic diversity of the crops themselves. Scholars call him the most distinguished plant breeder of his generation. Veteran producer Neenah Ellis travels to St. Petersburg, and explores the world's oldest seed bank, its intellectual legacy, and the roots of what we now call biodiversity.
The Soundprint documentary series features the best work of top radio producers. The award winning documentaries are renowned for drawing the listener into the story with compelling interviews, authentic voices and rich sound. From memoirs to science, health and popular culture, Soundprint creates a powerful experience the listener will not soon forget. Vavilov’s Ghost was produced with support from the National Science Foundation.