Speaking Scientific Truth to Power

Friday, February 19, 2010: 3:30 PM-5:00 PM
Room 7B (San Diego Convention Center)
To effectively address important issues such as climate change, nanotechnology, infectious diseases, energy resources, and innovation, the public and decision-makers need access to credible, independent assessments of the underlying science. A still small, but growing number of the world’s science academies provide a standing capacity to undertake such assessments outlining emerging issues, gaps in knowledge, and the implications for society and for public policy of advances in science worldwide. Independent, evidence-based expert assessments facilitate access to the best available scientific knowledge, bringing to light what is known, and what is not known, about the science that is relevant to important public issues. Nevertheless, this information is of little use if it is relegated to a dusty bookshelf. As such, it is essential to engage the public and decision-makers so that this knowledge may be applied in the real world for the advancement and betterment of society. This begs the question how do the world’s science academies and other facilitators of such assessments engage the public and decision-makers and what are some of the lessons learned and best practices?
Lisa M. Lambert, Council of Canadian Academies
Maria Trainer, Council of Canadian Academies
and Christina Stachulak, Council of Canadian Academies
Mark L. Winston, Simon Fraser University, Harbour Centre
Mark L. Winston, Simon Fraser University, Harbour Centre
Roseanne Diab, Academy of Science of South Africa
Clarifying the Niche of the Academy
Peter Nicholson, Council of Canadian Academies
Making the Voice of Reason Heard
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