Saturday, February 18, 2017: 10:00 AM-11:30 AM
Room 202 (Hynes Convention Center)
Rooted in our recent experiences conducting community-engaged science in Flint, Michigan and helping uncover the Flint Water Crisis, my talk will focus on the political, academic and personal ramifications that result once scientists “cross the line” and become advocates in defense of public health/environmental harm when science alone, unfortunately, is not sufficient. I will further detail the pressures in modern day academia where perverse incentives, funding scarcity and hyper-competition increasingly tie scientists, especially early career researchers, to the hedonistic treadmill of quantitative metrics, increases risk to scientific integrity, and discourage the pursuit of science as a public good, like we did in Flint. Acknowledging this shift in academic priorities as a legitimate threat to the future of science is an important first step, if we are to begin reforming the scientific enterprise together to better serve the public and not lose their valuable trust.