Benjamin Allen is the Outreach Coordinator for the Department of Energy Systems Biology Knowledgebase (kbase.us) - a knowledge creation and discovery environment designed for both biologists and bioinformaticians. KBase integrates a variety of data and analysis tools, from DOE and other public resources, into an easy-to-use platform that leverages scalable computing infrastructure to perform sophisticated systems biology analyses. KBase is a freely available and developer extensible platform where scientists can analyze their own data within the context of public data, using a variety of open-source bioinformatics apps to power their workflows.
Ben organizes outreach events and training activities to grow and develop the KBase user community and to advance microbiology research across DOE supported institutions. Since 2014, he has worked as part of the KBase team and alongside staff at the DOE Joint Genome Institute and the National Microbiome Data Collaborative to support genome science programs across the agency. As KBase staff, Ben is focused on catalyzing research using the platform by writing scientific protocols, developing training materials, and engaging in research collaborations to advance the use of the platform. He also supports the KBase research mission through user analytics and characterizing publications that use the software and data on KBase.
Prior to working at ORNL in the Biosciences Division, Ben was as an academic advisor at the UT-ORNL Bredesen Center for the Energy Science and Engineering graduate program. His background in biochemistry, microbiology, and science education helps him develop educational and research materials that provide depth of content knowledge while being accessible to interdisciplinary audiences. Research interests include systems biology, microbial ecology, bioremediation, metal-reducing microorganisms, and biology education.