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Civic Science Research and Learning Program Development

UW-Madison Dept. of Life Sciences Communication


I have been helping develop the Civic Science Fellows Program since it began in 2019.

This work is funded by and involves partnering with the Rita Allen Foundation and Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation, in collaboration with the Kavli Foundation, the Burroughs Wellcome Fund, the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, and the David and Lucile Packard Foundation.

Integrating social science research and film-making

I'm also collaborating with filmmakers at the Science Communication Lab to build publicly and privately funded research-practice partnerships expanding conversations and connections through science film-making. We're developing an iterative research process in film production and design to experiment with ways of communicating complex science and social issues with diverse audiences.

We have several on-going projects, including a National Science Foundation-funded project on “Collaborative Research: A new model for producing science documentaries: Building collaborations between scientists and storytellers to test methods of communication in film” (Award # AISL-2006010; PIs: Sarah Goodwin & Dietram Scheufele), $500,000. 


I do research and create partnerships that advance communication, collaboration, and decision-making on science- and risk-related issues in society and our everyday lives.  My work focuses on a "civic science" approach, looking at how we can have better science and better democratic governance and decision-making by creating stronger connections between diverse perspectives and priorities in science and civic life.  The motivation driving this work is figuring out how we can better share information and learn across value divisions and diverse interests. The goal is to improve our understanding of the world, what is possible, and what we want to do to address complex issues we face -- whether that's COVID-19 or future pandemics, emerging technologies in artificial intelligence or biotech, our energy systems and climate change responses, or other shared challenges that require building solutions that include and benefit all of us. This includes research and research-practice partnerships on we can reduce polarization and improve representation of diverse citizens and viewpoints in decision-making. 


I am currently a Civic Science Researcher and Learning Program Coordinator at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Department of Life Sciences Communication and for the Civic Science Fellows Program. I'm originally from Missoula, Montana and currently based in Hamburg, Germany.

M.S., 2016

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Environment & Resources

Certificate in Energy Analysis & Policy

Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies

B.A., 2013

Harvard University

​History of Science

Secondary concentration in 

Earth and Planetary Sciences

Ph.D., 2019

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Science & Risk Communication

Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, & Department of Life Sciences Communication

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