UW-Madison evolutionary biologist, educator and author Sean B. Carroll will be presented with The Rockefeller University’s Lewis Thomas Prize for Writing about Science, it was announced on Jan. 28, 2016.
Carroll will receive the award at a March 14 ceremony in recognition of his body of work, including his 2013 book Brave Genius: A Scientist, a Philosopher, and Their Daring Adventures from the French Resistance to the Nobel Prize.
Rockefeller University’s Board of Trustees established the award, originally called the Lewis Thomas Prize for Scientist as Poet, in 1993 to honor “the rare individual who bridges the worlds of science and the humanities – whose voice and vision can tell us about science’s aesthetic and philosophical dimensions, providing not merely new information but cause for reflection, even revelation.”
The award is named after its first recipient, noted physician, scientist and essayist Lewis Thomas.
Carroll is a professor of molecular biology and genetics at UW-Madison and vice president for science education at the Howard Hughes Medical Institute in Chevy Chase, Maryland. He was instrumental in building the field of evolutionary developmental biology, known colloquially as evo devo. His research focuses on the genes that control animal body patterns and affect the evolution of animal diversity.
Carroll’s 2005 book Endless Forms Most Beautiful: The New Science of Evo Devo and the Making of the Animal Kingdom, offers a framework of the then-emerging field. He has written several other books, including Remarkable Creatures: Epic Adventures in the Search for the Origins of Species, which was a 2009 National Book Award finalist, and 2013’s Brave Genius.