Alumni Profile: Ben Young Landis MEM ’09

Name: Ben Young Landis
Duke Degree: M.E.M. in Environmental Economics and Policy, 2009
Title/Org: Consultant, Creative Externalities

Professional Bio:

Ben Young Landis is a science writer and creative consultant. Through the collective Creative Externalities. he designs lasting impact for science, environment, and society.

Ben received his B.A. in Evolution and Ecology and Minor in Education from UC Davis, and his Duke MEM degree concentrating in environmental economics and policy. He was awarded a AAAS Mass Media Science & Engineering Fellowship in 2009, working at the Orange County Register as a science journalist. Ben also received the NOAA Walter B. Jones Sr. Memorial Award for Excellence in Coastal and Marine Graduate Studies in 2010.

Ben’s roots in environmental science spanned aquatic ecology, macroinvertebrate bioassessment, fish biology, and water resources management. However, his career since has specialized in the communication of science. He worked as a writer and editor for North Carolina Sea Grant, and has led science communication trainings for UC Davis, Duke University, the National Association of Science Writers, the Delta Science Fellows Program, and NorCal SETAC. Notably, he served as Science Communicator for the USGS Western Ecological Research Center from 2010 to 2015, where he covered endangered species, methylmercury, wildfire ecology, habitat restoration, and other research. He also served as Communications Advisor to the California Council on Science and Technology from 2015 to 2018, where he designed scicomm programs such as the California Science Translators Showcase. Ben also founded the Capital Science Communicators (CapSciComm) professional network in 2013 and continues to serves as its executive co-chair.

Professional Memberships and Networks:

  • National Association of Science Writers (NASW)
  • Capital Science Communicators (CapSciComm) – Founder and Executive Co-Chair
  • Northern California Regional Chapter of the Society of Environmental Toxicology and Chemistry (NorCal SETAC) – Board Member
  • Science Communicators of North Carolina (SCONC)
  • American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)

Contact Me About:

  • Creative, messaging, and branding projects
  • Science communication trainings
  • Science advice the state policy level
  • Sac Green Devils leadership and activity ideas!

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