Lauren Oakes

Ecologist and conservation scientist
Lauren is a PhD ecologist who works as a conservation scientist focused on climate change. She also happens to be an incredible writer, whose first book won several prestigious awards. Her deep scientific knowledge, combined with her storytelling prowess, make her an excellent guide to understanding and combatting climate change.


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Lauren E. Oakes is the author of In Search of the Canary Tree, one of Science Friday’s Best Science Books of 2018, the Second-Place Winner of the 2019 Rachel Carson Environmental Book Award, and a 2019 finalist for the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine Communication Award. She is a Conservation Scientist with the Wildlife Conservation Society, an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Earth System Science at Stanford University, and a freelance science writer.

In addition to publishing her climate- and forest-related research in peer-reviewed journals, Lauren has contributed to media and literary outlets such as The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, National Geographic, Scientific American, Lit Hub, and Emergence Magazine. Lauren speaks publicly about climate change adaptation and mitigation and teaches workshops in science communication. She is working on a new creative nonfiction book about natural climate solutions and the forests of the future.


I came away feeling optimistic and so grateful for people doing the work that Lauren is doing. Lauren's talk was not only informative, but gave us ideas and resources to explore for individually helping in our own small way.

Speakeasy Participant

Wonderful event! I really enjoyed hearing Dr. Oakes' story - which dovetails with so many of my interests - and I thought the event was engaging and interactive.

Speakeasy Participant