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Alice Bean
University of Kansas


Dr. Alice Bean is a Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Kansas. Professor Bean obtained a BA in physics and a BS in information and computer science from the Univ. of California at Irvine, an MS and a PhD in physics from Carnegie Mellon University, and was a postdoctoral researcher at the University of California at Santa Barbara, before she joined the faculty at the Univ. of Kansas in 1993. Her research area is experimental particle physics. Dr. Bean’s PhD and postdoctoral work focused on studies of the b and the c quarks. Currently, she works with the Compact Muon Solenoid collaboration at the Large Hadron Collider. In addition to studying Higgs boson decays, Dr. Bean helps to design and build detectors made of silicon. With the D0 collaboration at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, she helped to lead the development of the innermost tracking detector. With CMS, she helped to build the outer tracking detector and currently is helping to build an upgrade to the innermost silicon pixel detector. Dr. Bean also helped to develop the radio detectors now used at the South Pole to look for ultra-high energy neutrino decays. She is a fellow of the American Physical Society. With grants from the National Science Foundation, Dr. Bean has created research abroad activities for dozens of undergraduate and graduate students. She works extensively with undergraduate researchers at the Univ. of Kansas. Dr. Bean teaches advanced undergraduate laboratory courses as well as introductory physics courses for non-science majors. She has won the Univ. of Kansas Henry E. Gould award for distinguished service to undergraduate engineering education. With artists and other educators at the University of Kansas, Dr. Bean created the Quarked! Adventures in the Subatomic Universe project ( which seeks to create entertaining educational experiences for youth and others to learn about particle physics and other science topics. In addition to the animated videos and games available on the web, the group created hands-on workshops for elementary aged children as well as teachers. Several thousand students have taken part in these activities. Dr. Bean was awarded the 2007 Wally and Marie Steeples faculty award for Outstanding Service to the People of Kansas. 

State Department Profile

Secretary’s Bureau
Office of Faith Based Community Initiatives

Alice Bean serves in the Office of Faith Based Community Initiatives where she works on climate change issues. She helps connect people from U.S. Government sponsored programs with domestic and international environmentally active faith groups. A particular focus is engaging faith communities around the negotiations leading to Paris in 2015 for the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change. She is starting a science ambassador program where international scientists visiting the U.S. connect with local faith groups to talk about climate change effects in their home country. She is also particularly interested in forging partnerships in developing and developed countries to: increase sustainable land use and farming practices, help increase the use of renewable energy technology, and studying faith practices related to water use.