Science News unveils its list of 10 young scientists who are shaping our future

Scientist from Bard College is recognized for excellence in science communication

WASHINGTON, D.C. – For the eighth year, Science News is spotlighting 10 early- and mid-career scientists with innovative ideas and unique skill sets who are applying their talents to shape our future and our understanding of ourselves. The researchers on this year’s SN 10: Scientists to Watch list are tackling challenges ranging from climate change to Alzheimer’s disease to building a more equitable society.

This year’s scientists come from a pool of more than 100, nominated by members of the National Academy of Sciences, former SN 10 scientists and Science News readers. A team of Science News writers and editors — many experts in their fields — selected the scientists for their potential to shape the science of the future.

“The SN 10 honorees are not only poised to make a tremendous impact on our world but also understand the crucial power of collaboration,” said Nancy Shute, Science News Editor in Chief. “Many of these scientists shared that they have a high regard for the value that multiple perspectives can bring to their work.”

Science News is proud to present this year’s SN 10:

  1. Daniel Blanco-Melo, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center
  2. Róisín Commane, Columbia University
  3. Daphne Martschenko, Stanford University
  4. Julian Muñoz, University of Texas at Austin
  5. Deblina Sarkar, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  6. Lauren Schroeder, University of Toronto
  7. Quinton Smith, University of California, Irvine
  8. Clara Sousa-Silva, Bard College
  9. Berkley Walker, Michigan State University
  10. Marjorie Weber, University of Michigan

Each year, Society for Science, which publishes Science News, names one scientist from the SN 10 list as the winner of the $1,000 Jon C. Graff, Ph.D. Prize for Excellence in Science Communication. The 2023 Selection Committee awarded the Graff Prize to Clara Sousa-Silva, Assistant Professor of Physics at Bard College.

The committee, which praised Dr. Sousa-Silva’s dynamic communication style and her ability to explain clearly an often abstract field of science to a range of audiences with enthusiasm, was composed of five alumni of the Society’s science research competitions. A Science News reader since 1974, donor Jon Graff was a pioneer in digital cryptography. Graff died in 2021 and through his estate created an endowed fund that will support this annual prize in perpetuity.

“Congratulations to the SN 10 honorees and to Dr. Sousa-Silva for winning the Jon C. Graff, Ph.D. Prize for Excellence in Science Communication,” said Maya Ajmera, President and CEO of Society for Science and Executive Publisher of Science News. “These pioneering scientists are leading the way in groundbreaking discoveries. I look forward to following their careers and learning about their latest achievements.”

About Science News

Science News has been covering the latest discoveries in science, technology and medicine since 1921, and is published by Society for Science. It offers readers award-winning news and features, commentary, multimedia and access to archives dating back to 1921. Concise, current and comprehensive, the magazine provides an approachable overview of all fields and applications of science and technology.

Science News Media Group also includes Science News Explores, which makes science accessible for people ages 9 and up as well as Science News Learning, which brings Science News lesson plans to classrooms across the country.

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About Society for Science 

Society for Science is a champion for science, dedicated to promoting the understanding and appreciation of science and the vital role it plays in human advancement. Established in 1921, Society for Science is best known for its award-winning journalism through Science News and Science News Explores, its world-class science research competitions for students, including the Regeneron Science Talent Search, the Regeneron International Science and Engineering Fair and the Thermo Fisher Scientific Junior Innovators Challenge, and its outreach and equity programming that seeks to ensure that all students have an opportunity to pursue a career in STEM. A 501(c)(3) membership organization, Society for Science is committed to inform, educate and inspire. Learn more at and follow us on FacebookTwitterInstagram and Snapchat (Society4Science)