Contact Britt For Booking

Britt Wray

We have the ability to read, write, and modify our own DNA. But to what end should we use these abilities?

Science Writer and Broadcaster | Author of Rise of the Necrofauna

Contact Britt For Booking
Britt Wray | Science Writer and Broadcaster | Author of Rise of the Necrofauna
Lavin Exclusive Speaker

Science storyteller, broadcaster, author—in total, Britt Wray’s work is about life and what we make of it: past, present, and future. Author of the astonishing book Rise of the Necrofauna, Wray’s talks show audiences what’s happening at the forefront of biotechnology, and how it affects us. What ethical questions does the ability to read, modify and write our own DNA raise? Incisive and realistic, Wray frames the questions we need to ask, and the answers we must consider.

Combining cutting-edge scientific research and pertinent ethical inquiry, Britt Wray’s talks offer a bold convergence point for biotech and bioethics. These are not lab reports. Rather, Wray kickstarts discussions about genetic privacy, equality, discrimination, and the changing of our shared human genetic heritage—no safety glasses required. Currently a summer host on CBC Radio 1’s flagship science show Quirks and Quarks, Wray is also developing a documentary with CBC’s legendary science program The Nature of Things. The New Yorker named her first book Rise of the Necrofauna: The Science, Ethics, and Risks of De-Extinction a “book we loved” and The Sunday Times called it a “must-read.” By making science accessible and illuminating its possible consequences, Wray’s writing, broadcasting, and talks help us understand how the world is changing, creating a rich space for conversation about how each of us can respond to those changes. 

 

Encompassing subjects like personal genomics and human genetic modification, Wray’s talks aren’t strictly for the science-inclined. By knowing what’s happening in this space (by virtue of how it affects us all as human beings), audiences from any business, organization, or industry will learn about the future of life from a speaker at the forefront of biotechnology. Wray asks her listeners to critically reflect on these issues in order to take personal next steps—whether that’s honing a newfound fascination for real-world developments, or responsibly dealing with uncertainties that new science and tech are bringing into our lives. 

 

As co-host of the BBC podcast Tomorrow’s World, Wray answers big questions about the future on a biweekly basis, discussing how science will change and influence our lives in the years to come. She is also  directing a documentary series with the National Film Board of Canada about personal genomics. Wray is preparing to defend her PhD in Science Communication and Synthetic Biology at the University of Copenhagen in the Department of Media, Cognition and Communication, and holds a BSc (Hon) in Biology from Queen’s University and an Interdisciplinary Master’s in Art, Media and Design from OCAD University. She has been a Visiting Scholar at the NYU Arthur L. Carter Institute for Journalism.  


 

Speech Topics

Climate Change
Weathering Climate Change Saving the Earth and Saving Ourselves
Biotechnology expert Britt Wray’s fascinating new talk considers the psychological ramifications of living in a warming world—and the crazy-making knowledge that we, as a society, are part of the problem. The emotional and existential effects of the climate crisis (dubbed “pre-traumatic stress”) are becoming so severe, they’re causing people to question deeply personal decisions, like whether or not to have children. Wray contends it is not enough to wrestle with the political or technological issues alone. The climate emergency is already having devastating psychological consequences: multiplying the stresses felt by marginalized communities; altering the way individuals make life-changing decisions, such as family planning; and a troubling rise in drug abuse, PTSD, and a loss of identity reported by people personally affected by climate events. In this talk, Wray makes a compelling argument for making mental health an integral aspect of climate change survival strategy moving forward—and what practical steps we can take to achieve this.