Dr. Lauri Baker is an associate professor in agricultural communications at Kansas State University where she is a co-creator of the Center for Rural Enterprise Engagement and teaches courses in new media, agricultural communication theory, and environmental communication. She received her M.S. and PhD in agricultural communication from the University of Florida in 2009 and 2011, respectively. The goal of Baker’s research program is to determine how the agricultural industry can communicate strategically with its publics. She expands from there to focus on specific publics including customers and consumers, media, policy makers and their influencers, stakeholders, and opinion leaders.
Baker’s research program often works to explain basic questions related to human decision-making when people are presented with complex scientific topics like understanding climate science or interpreting and using new technologies. She works to achieve these research goals through collaboration with colleagues from other disciplines and institutions and funding agencies that support research that aspires to make a difference in how decisions are made related to global scientific understanding. Her research and grant work includes multiple grants related to strategic new media communication.