Steve Olson

Steve Olson is an American writer who specializes in science, mathematics, and public policy. He is author of several nonfiction books, most notably Mapping Human History: Genes, Race, and Our Common Origins (2002), which was nominated for the National Book Award and received the Science-in-Society Award from the National Association of Science Writers. His other books include Count Down: Six Kids Vie for Glory at the World’s Toughest Math Competition (2004); Anarchy Evolution: Faith, Science, and Bad Religion in a World Without God (2010); Eruption: The Untold Story of Mount St. Helens (2016); and The Apocalypse Factory: Plutonium and the Making of the Atomic Age (2020).

A 1978 graduate of Yale University, Olson has written for The Atlantic, The Smithsonian, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Science, Scientific American, Slate, Washingtonian, and Wired, among others. He has also served as a writer for the National Academy of Sciences, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, and other national scientific organizations. A native of Washington state, he now lives in Seattle with his wife Lynn.

In March 2016, Olson delivered the Orcas Currents lecture “Eruption: The Untold Story of Mount St. Helens”.

For more information about Steve Olson and his other works, see:

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