Chinta Sidharthan is a writer based in Bangalore, India. Her academic background is in evolutionary biology and genetics, and she has extensive experience in scientific research, teaching, science writing, and herpetology. Chinta holds a Ph.D. in evolutionary biology from the Indian Institute of Science and is passionate about science education, writing, animals, wildlife, and conservation. For her doctoral research, she explored the origins and diversification of blindsnakes in India, as a part of which she did extensive fieldwork in the jungles of southern India. She has received the Canadian Governor General’s bronze medal and Bangalore University gold medal for academic excellence and published her research in high-impact journals.
After completing her Ph.D., Chinta continued working in the field of evolutionary biology. As a post-doctoral researcher, she is exploring the phylogenetics and biogeography of gastropods in India. She has also worked as a freelance science editor and teaching assistant. She completed her high school education and an undergraduate degree in Biology from Toronto, Canada, where she also used to work as a transcription assistant helping students with learning disabilities.
Outside of work, she is an avid reader struggling to find shelf space for her ever-growing collection of books. She enjoys cooking, collecting coffee mugs, riding and tinkering with motorcycles and mountain bikes, dabbling with paints, and making metal and clay jewelry. She is a cat mom to three little monsters —Nutmeg, Cinnamon, and Pepper — and helps rescue and foster cats and dogs. She loves the outdoors and one day hopes to live in a cabin in the mountains.
She speaks seven Indian languages — some fluently and some functionally. She also speaks Spanish and French manageably well. She backpacked across Cuba during her teenage years with her parents, doubling as their Spanish translator.