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I am an Associate Professor working in the field of cosmology, the study of how the universe began and evolved into what we see today.

My research , and that of the students working with me, focuses on improving our understanding of the nature of dark energy, the mysterious quantity responsible for the accelerated expansion of the universe, and dark matter, and how can we use observations to distinguish between competing theories. I'm also interested in the application of high energy theories to understanding the properties of cosmic inflation in the first moments after the universe was conceived. Inflation is believed to be the process that seeded the large scale structure (galaxies and clusters of galaxies) that we observe today.

I am actively involved in four upcoming large scale structure surveys: LSST, DESI, Euclid and WFIRST. I am the leader (named the "Spokesperson" in High Energy Physics collaborations) of the LSST Dark Energy Science Collaboration. One of the first activities I oversaw in this role was the creation of the DESC Science Roadmap , a Collaboration-wide planning document that details the critical activities to be ready for analysis of LSST data at first light. I co-lead the Dark Energy Spectroscopic Instrument (DESI) "Small scale clustering, clusters and combined probes" work group, am a NASA Euclid science team member and a member of the NASA WFIRST High Latitude Survey Science Investigation Team.

Beyond my research, I play an active role in my department and university. I am the Director of Graduate Studies for the Field of Astronomy, and from 2013-15 was the Chair of the College of Arts of Sciences Diversity Committee. In that role I led the creation of a report on "Growing and Sustaining Diversity in the College of Arts and Sciences Faculty", which studied the College's progress in meeting its diversity goals, and identifed strategies to enhance diversity in the College. The report made recommendations that have led to positive changes in the hiring and recruitment policy and practice within the College.



Rachel Bean
612 Space Sciences Bldg
Department of Astronomy
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853
607 254 4920