Association Affairs

Forum's fight for science

+ See all authors and affiliations

Science  28 Apr 2017:
Vol. 356, Issue 6336, pp. 390
DOI: 10.1126/science.356.6336.390-b

Multiple speakers at the Science and Technology Policy Forum voiced concerns about scientific integrity, defending evidence, and using scientific data in policy-making throughout this year's event.

Senator Christopher Coons (D-Del.) implored scientists to step up as advocates for scientific discovery—and called upon his colleagues to ensure that the federal government continues to make data generated by statistical agencies publicly available, to launch a bipartisan effort to secure federal funding for basic science research, and to pass an immigration reform bill that would make it easier for scientists to live, work, and study in the United States.

“In short, I'm calling for all of us to work with Congress and fight for open data, open minds, and open arms,” said Coons during the William D. Carey Lecture, which annually honors a leader in articulating science policy concerns.

Amy Luers, director of climate change at the Skoll Global Threats Fund, cited a global survey that found people's trust in government, business, media, and nongovernmental organizations has continued to decline, and that people are as likely to trust their peers as they are experts. Other research has shown that no matter how good evidence is, people will reject it if it does not fit into their own views. To combat these problems, Luers said, scientists should link issues such as climate change with other issues that their target audience cares about, such as managing risk, creating resilience, or even national security.

Navigate This Article