Elizabeth Svoboda

Elizabeth Svoboda 2008

Independent Journalist

The winner of the 2008 Evert Clark/Seth Payne Award, an annual prize for young science journalists, is Elizabeth Svoboda, a writer based in San Jose, Calif. Svoboda received the award and its $1000 prize for four stories: “The Fuel Cell” (Popular Science); “The Asteroid Hunters” (Discover); “Scents & Sensibility” (Psychology Today); and “The sun blotted out from the sky” (Salon).

The panel of judges cited Svoboda for her wide-ranging topics and her ability to adapt to the needs and styles of different publications. The judges praised her for humanizing science by making “really good use of people,” and for the clarity of her writing. They also liked Svoboda’s “reasonably skeptical” look at the claims of researchers.

The judges also awarded an Honorable Mention to Tracy Powell for two stories in the Berkeley Science Review: “Robot Circus,” and “The Lovely Bones.” Writing for a university magazine, Powell impressed the judges with a “flair for language” and clear explanations of science.

The award will be presented by the Evert Clark Fund and the National Association of Science Writers, in conjunction with the National Press Foundation. The ceremony will take place on Oct. 26 during the annual meeting of the National Association of Science Writers and the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing in Palo Alto, Calif.

Judges for the 2008 award were Rick Weiss, former Washington Post science writer (now senior fellow at the Center for American Progress); Laura Helmuth, senior science editor at Smithsonian; Richard Kerr, senior writer at Science; Susan Katz Miller, writer for Newsweek and other publications; and David Lindley, author of such books as Uncertainty: Einstein, Heisenberg, Bohr, and the Struggle for the Soul of Science and The End of Physics: The Myth of a Unified Theory.

Other Winners of this Award

2016

NPF Award Winner: Natalie Wolchover

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Quanta Magazine

2014

NPF Award Winner: Azeen Ghorayshi

Azeen Ghorayshi

BuzzFeed News

2013

NPF Award Winner: Megan Scudellari

Megan Scudellari

The Scientist

2012

NPF Award Winner: Gayathri Vaidyanathan

Gayathri Vaidyanathan

Greenwire, Energywire

2011

NPF Award Winner: Christine Peterson

Christine Peterson

Casper Star-Tribune

2010

NPF Award Winner: Amber Dance

Amber Dance

Writer

2009

Alicia Chang

Associated Press

2008

Elizabeth Svoboda

Independent Journalist

2007

Jia-Rui Chong

Los Angeles Times

2005

Nicholas Zamiska

The Wall Street Journal

2004

Kara Platoni

East Bay Express

2003

Jennifer Couzin

Science

2002

Lila Guterman

The Chronicle of Higher Education

2001

Evan Ratliff

Wired Magazine

2000

Joel P. Engardio

San Francisco Weekly

1998

Nell Boyce

New Scientist

1996

Michael Milstein

Billings Gazette

1995

Richard Stone

Discover

1994

Carl Zimmer

Discover

1993

Robert Langreth

Popular Science

1990

Malcolm Gladwell

The Washington Post