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News Release 12-058

The National Science Board Announces Recipient of the 2012 Public Service Award

Lawrence Krauss to be honored in ceremony on May 3

Photo of cosmologist and author Lawrence Krauss.

Lawrence Krauss, renowned cosmologist and author, will be honored at a ceremony on May 3.

March 28, 2012

View the 2012 NSB Public Service Award presentation by cosmologist and author Lawrence Krauss and a video interview (clip1, clip2, clip3, clip4).

This material is available primarily for archival purposes. Telephone numbers or other contact information may be out of date; please see current contact information at media contacts.

The National Science Board (NSB) announced today that renowned cosmologist and author, Lawrence Krauss, is the recipient of its 2012 Public Service Award for an individual.

Krauss is the Foundation Professor in the School of Earth and Space Exploration and physics director of the Origins Project at Arizona State University. He has been hailed by Scientific American as a rare "public intellectual."

Krauss has authored more than 300 scientific publications and nine books, including the international bestseller The Physics of Star Trek, an entertaining and eye-opening tour of the Star Trek universe and Beyond Star Trek, which responds to recent exciting discoveries in physics and astronomy and takes a look how the laws of physics relate to notions from popular culture.

His most recent bestseller, A Universe from Nothing, offers provocative, revelatory answers to the most basic philosophical questions.

As one of the few scientists to have crossed the chasm between science and popular culture, Krauss has been a frequent commentator and columnist for newspapers such as the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. He has written regular columns for New Scientist and Scientific American, and appears routinely on radio and television.

Additionally, he performed solo with the Cleveland Orchestra, narrating Gustav Holst's The Planets at the Blossom Music Center for the most highly attended concert at that venue, and received a Grammy nomination for his liner notes for a Telarc CD of music from Star Trek. He also served as a judge at the Sundance Film Festival.

He continues to be a leader in his field as he serves as a co-chair of the board of sponsors of the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, on the board of directors of the Federation of American Scientists, and is one of the founders of ScienceDebate2012.

Krauss is internationally known for his work in theoretical physics--he is the only physicist to receive major awards from all three U.S. physics societies: the American Physical Society, the American Institute of Physics and the American Association of Physics Teachers.

Krauss received his Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1982 and joined the Society of Fellows at Harvard University. He was a professor at Yale and the Ambrose Swasey Professor and chair of the physics department at Case Western University prior to taking his current position in 2008.

"Lawrence Krauss' broad public outreach bridges science and popular culture through various media and intellectual pursuits, and we are proud to name him as the recipient of the 2012 NSB Public Service Award presented to an individual," said NSB Chairman Ray Bowen.

The NSB Public Service Award honors individuals and groups that have made substantial contributions to increasing public understanding of science and engineering in the United States. These contributions may be in a wide variety of areas that have the potential of contributing to public understanding of and appreciation for science and engineering--including mass media, education, training programs and/or entertainment.

Krauss will receive the NSB Public Service Award for an individual medal and certificate at an awards ceremony and dinner on May 3 at the U.S. Department of State in Washington, D.C., along with recipients of the Vannevar Bush Award, the NSB Public Service Award for a group and National Science Foundation's Alan T. Waterman Award.

About the National Science Board

The National Science Board is the 25-member policymaking body for the National Science Foundation and advisory body to the president and Congress on science and engineering issues. Drawn primarily from universities and industry, and representing a variety of science and engineering disciplines and geographic areas, NSB members are selected for their eminence in research, education or public service and records of distinguished service. The NSB has 24 members that serve six-year terms. The 25th member is the NSF director, an ex officio member of the NSB. Visit the National Science Board's Web site for more information.


Media Contacts
Deborah Wing, NSF, (703) 292-5344, email:

Program Contacts
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The U.S. National Science Foundation propels the nation forward by advancing fundamental research in all fields of science and engineering. NSF supports research and people by providing facilities, instruments and funding to support their ingenuity and sustain the U.S. as a global leader in research and innovation. With a fiscal year 2023 budget of $9.5 billion, NSF funds reach all 50 states through grants to nearly 2,000 colleges, universities and institutions. Each year, NSF receives more than 40,000 competitive proposals and makes about 11,000 new awards. Those awards include support for cooperative research with industry, Arctic and Antarctic research and operations, and U.S. participation in international scientific efforts.

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