September 4, 2007

Don Monroe, a freelance science journalist from Berkeley Heights, NJ, has been named the recipient of the Acoustical Society of America’s Science Writing Award in Acoustics for Journalists. His award-winning article, “Why the Inner Ear is Snail-Shaped,” was published in the online magazine Physical Review Focus in 2006.

The article explains how the curled shape of the inner ear contributes to better hearing, and explains the science of why the shape matters. Monroe’s entry was the winner because he “explained a very complex physical phenomenon in clear, concise language,” says Dr. Joe Posey, the chair of the science writing awards judging committee.

Monroe has written physics-related content since 2004. He graduated from MIT with a PhD in physics in 1985, and worked as a scientist in semiconductor computer chip research. He attended New York University’s Science and Environmental Reporting Program, and then began his second career in science journalism.

Monroe will receive a $1,000 prize and an award certificate, which will be presented at the 2007 ASA Fall Meeting, to be held in New Orleans in November.