Research!America’s Bipartisan Civic Engagement initiative is well underway as graduate and post-doc science policy groups host public and candidate engagement events across the nation.
The Science Policy Group (SPG) at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) hosted their first workshop in a three-part series on September 24, 2018 where they taught scientists to write and publicize op-eds that influence science and health policy. Over 100 community members attended. Speakers included Louise Aronsen, MD, MFA, a UCSF professor and New York Times contributor, and introductory remarks from Keith Yamamoto, PhD, Vice Chancellor of Science Policy at UCSF and Research!America board member. Creating this discourse between the scientific community and the public “is…part of our responsibility as scientists to inform the public of what we do, how we do it, and why we do it,” Dr. Yamamoto stated in his opening remarks.
The workshop kicked off SPG’s Op-Ed writing contest where scientists will submit articles to local newspapers to engage their communities and policymakers on societal benefits of research. The Science Policy Group’s next workshop is October 8, where attendees will draft their own op-ed.
The Washington Science Policy Network is holding a candidate forum on October 20 at Lewis and Clarke High School in Spokane, Washington with community members and local scientists to discuss how to keep Eastern Washington healthy. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA), Democratic challenger Lisa Brown and state legislative candidates are invited to attend. Topics for discussion include the opioid crisis, rural healthcare needs, and the health impacts of changing climate.
The Missouri Science and Technology Policy Fellows in collaboration with the Associated Students of University of Missouri are planning Candidate Forums and Debate Watch Parties focused on science and technology policy in Boone, St. Louis, Jackson, and Phelps Counties between October 10 and October 24. Events will begin with brief presentations, questions, and discussions from scientists whose research directly impacts the state of Missouri. Candidates will be asked to weigh in on science policy–related questions as generated from constituent contributions at http://mostpolicyfellows.org.
For more information about the Bipartisan Civic Engagement initative, visit http://bit.ly/2PIRSST