Advisory Board

Dr. Robert Carlson

Robert Carlson, Ph.D. is a Principal at Biodesic, an engineering, consulting, and design firm in Seattle. At the broadest level, Rob is interested in the future role of biology as a human technology. He has worked to develop new biological technologies in both academic and commercial environments, focusing on molecular measurement and microfluidic systems. He is the author of the book Biology Is Technology: The Promise, Peril, and New Business of Engineering Life, published in 2010 by Harvard University Press. He earned a doctorate in Physics from Princeton University in 1997.
From 2002 to 2007, Rob was a Senior Scientist in the Electrical Engineering department at the University of Washington. From 2003 to 2008, he provided technology analysis and strategic consulting as a Senior Associate at Bio-Economic Research Associates (Bio-era), writing extensively on pandemic preparedness, synthetic vaccines, biofuels, and biological technologies, and presenting briefings on these subjects to executives and government officials around the world. From 1997 to 2002, he was a Research Fellow at The Molecular Sciences Institute in Berkeley, California.
Rob coauthored DARPA Open Source Biology Letter, Genome Synthesis and Design Futures: Implications for the US Economy, and Scenarios for the Future of Synthetic Biology, and authored Biological Technology in 2050, The Pace and Proliferation of Biological Technologies, Synthetic Biology 1.0, Splice It Yourself, Laying the Foundations of a Bio-economy, Tracking the Spread of Biological Technologies, The New Biofactories, The Market Value of GM Crops, and The Changing Economist of DNA Synthesis. Read the full list of his publications!
Watch Conversation with Carl Zimmer and Rob Carlson. Read The Economist Debate on Biofuels vs. Electric Cars and The New Biofactories. Read his blog and his LinkedIn profile.