For coverage that revealed the complexities of building the James Webb Space Telescope, which designed to facilitate groundbreaking astronomical and cosmological research,the science writer Natalie Wolchover wins the 2022 Pulitzer Prize.
“It’s the honor of my life and a tremendous recognition for our whole team and for our ethos at Quanta,”Wolchover says. “And given how much there is to be sorrowful about in the world today, I’m also thrilled that the Pulitzer jury has recognized an uplifting story about the best aspects of humanity: our curiosity, ingenuity and resolve.”
“For a small science outlet like Quanta to win the top award in journalism is beyond words,” says Quanta editor-in-chief Thomas Lin. “It required an enormous amount of elbow grease and resourcefulness and the kind of smart reporting that Natalie’s been doing for years.”
Wolchover’s reporting traces the bedeviling engineering process that produced the James Webb Space Telescope, including tight budgets, details of assembly, goals and a host of other things.
Wolchover holds a bachelor’s degree in physics from Tufts University and studied physics at the University of California, Berkeley, according to her Live Science biography, and before the Pulitzer she won numerous other journalistic prizes. She was the 2016 winner of the Evert Clark/Seth Payne Award, an annual prize for young science journalists, and the winner of the 2017 Science Communication Award for the American Institute of Physics.
“Her work has also appeared in the The Best American Science and Nature Writing and The Best Writing on Mathematics, Nature, The New Yorker and Popular Science,” her Live Science biography states.