Lauren Sallan, SM’09, PHD’12

Lauren Sallan, SM’09, PHD’12
2018 Distinguished Service Award for Early Achievement Recipient

Martin Meyerson Assistant Professor in Interdisciplinary Studies,
Earth and Environmental Science,
University of Pennsylvania

Lauren Sallan, SM’09, PhD’12, is a ‘next generation’ paleobiologist, using cutting-edge developments in ‘Big Data’ analytics and tech to reveal how evolution happens at the largest scales (macroevolution). Sallan uses the vast fossil record of fishes as a deep time database, mining it to find out why some species persist and diversify while others die off. Sallan earned a PhD in Integrative Biology from the University of Chicago, Department of Organismal Biology and Anatomy, in 2012. She is currently the Martin Meyerson Assistant Professor in Interdisciplinary Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, based in the Department of Earth and Environmental Science, and became a TED Fellow in 2017. Her TED Talk on how species survive mass extinctions was featured on the TED website in November 2017 and has received over 1 million views. Sallan’s research has been published in high-profile venues such as Science, PNAS, and Current Biology. It has also been featured in The New York Times, The Chicago Tribune, Forbes, the New Scientist, the Discovery Channel, and the popular science book The Ends of the World by Peter Brannen (Harper Collins).

View 2018 DSA recipients
  Learn more about the DSA