Joseph Romm

Senior Research Fellow at the Penn Center for Science, Sustainability and the Media

Dr. Romm is a leading expert on climate solutions and clean energy—and how to communicate those to the public. He holds a PhD in physics from MIT and has authored countless articles and 10 books in the areas of climate change, clean energy, and communications. In the 1990s, Romm spent 5 years working on climate solutions at the US Department of Energy. For 3 years, he helped to run the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy ultimately serving as Acting Assistant Secretary, where he oversaw $1 billion in R&D and demonstration of low-carbon technologies. This included renewables, building efficiency, industrial decarbonization, energy storage, bioenergy, hydrogen, and electric cars. In 2008, Romm was elected a Fellow of the AAAS for “distinguished service toward a sustainable energy future and for persuasive discourse on … sustainable technologies.” In 2009, Rolling Stone named him one of 100 “people who are reinventing America,” and Time named him “Hero of the Environment″ and “The Web’s most influential climate-change blogger.” Romm was Chief Science Advisor for the Emmy-winning docuseries “Years of Living Dangerously.” His Oxford University Press book was called “the best single-source primer on the state of climate change” by New York Magazine.

Katharine (Kate) C. Staley

Visiting Scholar at the Penn Center for Science, Sustainability and the Media

Katharine (Kate) C. Staley, Ph.D. is a licensed clinical psychologist, trained in the scientist/practitioner model. Currently, she is serving as a Visiting Scholar at University of Pennsylvania’s Penn Center for Science, Sustainability, and the Media (PCSSM). There, Dr. Staley is conducting research on the anxiety, despair, and other psychological impacts of climate change on adolescents and young adults.  Dr. Staley also started River Rocks Consulting where she employs her expertise writing white papers and offering evidence-based talks and trainings. Her most recent white paper was on the unique stressors impacting Generation Z’s mental health and wellbeing.  Prior to starting River Rocks, Dr. Staley worked at Penn State University for over 15 years as a researcher, clinician, educator, writer, and outreach specialist. Most recently, Dr. Staley served as the Assistant Director of Community Education and Outreach at Penn State’s large student counseling center (CAPS). Other positions held at Penn State include Associate Director of the Justice Center for Research, Research Scientist at the Clearinghouse for Military Family Readiness, and PSU Project Director of the Family Life Project, a large two-site NICHD-funded study of children growing up in rural poverty.  Dr. Staley has served as a consultant to a myriad of organizations, including CASEL, ChildFund International, and Togetherall, an international digital health company. Dr. Staley received her M.S. and Ph.D. in Child Clinical Psychology from Penn State University, and her A.B. in Psychology from Brown University.

Eryn Campbell

Gloria T. and Melvin J (“Jack”) Chisum Post-Doctoral Research Fellow

Eryn Campbell is the Gloria T. and Melvin J. (“Jack”) Chisum Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at PCSSM and APPC. Her research interests broadly include engaging key stakeholders in advocacy for climate action, media and social influences on public perceptions of climate change, climate and health messaging strategies, and communicating climate mitigation and adaptation measures. Eryn was previously a research assistant with George Mason University’s Center for Climate Change Communication (4C) where she earned her Ph.D. in science communication. She also earned her M.P.S. in Weather, Climate, and Society from the University of Miami’s Rosenstiel School of Marine and Atmospheric Science and a B.S. in Environmental Science from the University of Virginia.

Lauren Lutzke

Kleinman Center for Energy Policy Post-Doctoral Research Fellow

Lauren Lutzke will begin in August 2023 as the Kleinman Center for Energy Policy Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at PCSSM. With a background in psychology and environmental studies, Lauren’s interdisciplinary research broadly focuses on judgements and decisions people make in relation to the issue of climate change. Her work has examined interventions for preventing the spread of climate misinformation online, public perceptions and acceptance of a new climate technology, and communication strategies for conveying climate policy information on Twitter. Lauren’s work has been published in Global Environmental ChangeClimatic Change, and Risk Analysis. Lauren received an M.S. in environmental studies from the University of Michigan in 2019 and a Ph.D. in social psychology from the University of Southern California in 2022. 

Alyssa (Allie) Sinclair

Joan Bossert Post-Doctoral Research Fellow

Alyssa (Allie) Sinclair is the Joan Bossert Post-Doctoral Research Fellow at PCSSM and APPC. She collaborates with Emily Falk and others at Penn to develop interventions to change beliefs and behaviors pertaining to climate change and health. Allie draws on her expertise in learning, memory, and motivation to design interventions that are informed by cognitive neuroscience. Her research interests include knowledge and belief updating, learning from error, risk communication, information seeking and sharing, and misinformation correction. To conduct this interdisciplinary research, Allie uses a combination of in-lab and online behavioral studies, functional neuroimaging, and large-scale online field studies. Prior to joining PCSSM, Allie completed a PhD in Psychology & Neuroscience at Duke University and an Honours BSc in Experimental Psychology at the University of Toronto. Outside of the lab, Allie enjoys rock climbing, video games, painting, and hiking.

Join our team! Please see below for current opportunities.
Civic Science Fellow – Deadline is January 15, 2024.

Civic Science Postdoctoral Fellowship in Climate Communication and Action at the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania
Are you passionate about using science to positively impact society? Are you motivated to find innovative ways to conduct science in partnership with communities? Do you want to join a network of individuals and organizations who are committed to advancing science and society through meaningful collaboration between scientists and community members? With support from the Rita Allen Foundation and Burroughs Wellcome fund, we’re recruiting a Postdoctoral Fellow who will serve as a 2024-2025 Civic Science Fellow and develop civically-oriented research projects focused on the science of climate communication, action, and resilience at the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania (APPC), working with APPC’s Climate Communication and Action and Science Communication Divisions, with APPC’s partner center the Penn Center for Science Sustainability and the Media, and with the university’s Netter Center for Community Partnerships. This appointment is expected to last 24 months, with an initial appointment from March 2024 to February 2025, and a second year, contingent on funding and satisfactory performance, from March 2025 to February 2026.

For more information, click here.

Sustainability and Conservation Science Postdoctoral Fellowship – Deadline is February 16, 2024.

This postdoctoral fellowship program aims to bridge the excellence in academic research at the University of Pennsylvania (Penn) and in conservation practice at The Nature Conservancy (TNC) to confront climate change, while creating a new generation of sustainability and conservation leaders who combine the rigor of academic science with real-world application.

Penn and TNC join in recognizing climate change as the single greatest environmental threat to humanity. Climate change is an issue that tightly integrates the health of the planet with the economy, access to clean and reliable energy, water, and food production, and equity. To tackle these challenges, our world needs science that blends climatology, physics, economics, business, chemistry, engineering, technology and communications with conservation and ecology. As well, it must marry the best academic research with opportunities for rapid testing and deployment in the real world to address human well-being.

The specific program goals are to:

  • Invest in the talent potential of a new generation of climate change leaders
  • Recruit scientists who bring a diversity of culture, experience, and ideas to Penn and TNC
  • Support innovative and impact-oriented research that helps deliver TNC outcomes
  • Provide the fellows and Penn research community as a whole with access to real-world conservation professionals and issues.

Postdoctoral Fellows will be supported annually with a $65,000 stipend and benefits, a $10,000 research fund, and up-to $2,000 for professional travel. A one-time relocation reimbursement of up-to $2,000 is also available. Fellows will be eligible for support for up-to two consecutive years.

For more information, click here.