Usha Lee McFarling

BA (Biology) Brown University, 1989
MA (Biological Psychology) University of California, Berkeley, 1998

Office: CMU 127

Usha Lee McFarling, Artist In Residence, is a science journalist who has worked at the Los Angeles Times, Boston Globe and the Knight Ridder Washington Bureau and covered a wide range of topics from astrophysics and seismology to neuroscience, medicine and climate change. She uses literary and narrative tools to enhance storytelling despite the technical — and sometimes intimidating — nature of scientific topics. She is interested in how complex topics in science, health and the environment are conveyed to a general audience and how the communication of scientific information to the general public is evolving with the onset of new media tools. Her work has won a number of awards, including the George Polk Award, Grantham Prize, AAAS Science in Society Award and AGU Walter Sullivan Award. In 1992, she was awarded a Knight Science Journalism Fellowship for a year of study at MIT. In 2007, she was awarded a Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Reporting for “Altered Oceans,” a series in the Los Angeles Times.

Selected Publications

Altered Oceans: A Five-Part Series on the Crisis in the Seas. Kenneth R. Weiss and Usha Lee McFarling, photography and video by Rick Loomis. 2006. Los Angeles Times.

Deborah Blum, Mary Knudson, Robin Marantz Henig, ed (2006). “Climate.” A Field Guide for Science Writers. Oxford University Press. ISBN 9780195174991.