I’ve recently been thinking about this: There are a lot of Americans who don’t know a single scientist.

This is one of our biggest failures as a community. When we March for Science in April, we’ll be fighting for our right to freely communicate with the people whose taxes fund our work and the legislators who we hope will use our work to inform policymaking. But we haven’t done a good job of actually communicating with people about what we do.

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  • I left grad school a few years ago and with it a research career. Now I am working with a local church to get a science educator on staff that can help bridge communities historically at odds. We’re trying to start science seminars that most scientists are used to, for the general public, in an atypical environment. I think this kind of outreach is what extension was supposed to be, but the academic model has kind of saturated the folks who are already listening. My frustration at the academic insularity and my desire to be “in the field” brought me to this new career path. Anywho, I am always looking for people who want to jump in with seminars to share. I am still working on the model, but it’s almost there. Thanks!

  • Extremely important and insightful. Thank you so much for articulating this problem! I have been working in the field of science education for over 20 years and would love to help the public understand science.

  • There are events and resources that are positive responses to this issue.

    The national network, Portal to the Public, provides strategies to connect scientists and educators who are dedicated to public engagement with current science. https://popnet.pacificsciencecenter.org

    Locally nearly 40 professionals in the fields of science, technology, engineering, math, and medicine have become Science Communication Fellows and participate in Meet the Scientists! programs. http://www.discoverymuseums.org/fellowships

    The upcoming Family Science Days at the AAAS Annual Meeting in Boston are a great opportunity for the public to meet scientists and do hands-on activities – February 18 and 19 http://meetings.aaas.org/family-science-days/

  • Awesome ideas. How do I get involved? What if we used reddit Ask Me Anything and had a scientist appear every single day until April’s march? That would be very cool.

    • I know a professor researching disease at CU Boulder every summer who would love to participate. Who could help start this thing?–contact me.

  • There’s two good books related to this topic: “Don’t Be Such A Scientist” and “Houston, We Have A Narrative: Why Science Needs Story” by Randy Olson both cover how scientists can better communicate with the public. It used to be that journalists did a lot of the communicating for scientists, but now scientists have to do that job.

  • You had me all the way until you threw politics into the mix. Silly rabbit leave the politics to statesmen and worry about what is important.

  • Wonderful post Sara .. It was really thought provoking. The kind of limitations Science is facing.. whether it is Brexit or Trump’s ban, We as a Science fraternity must come out even Stronger. What I personally feel is that Our voices and sentiments could have echoed in multiple folds if we would have had related well to common man or the people who are not so much into Science.
    As a Moecular Biology student I feel that the communication part becomes quite relevant here. We have to popularise science in an engaging manner. We have to take the initiative. Let’s not immerse so much into our personal achievements that we forget our responsibility to make Science accessible to all. All we need is time, effort and a will power to bring a change.

    • I am a keylontic scientist from Nigeria and I have some discoveries about the nucleus entity of acoustic technology… which is the phonetic expression of 369/ golden ratio formula and can also mutate other frequencies according to the quantum energy field….
      I received an invitation from Nikola Tesla museum new York America last year for experiment on geo acoustic tech and hurricane frequency manipulation… But the government here in Nigeria doesn’t support scientific discoveries and hypothesis… That’s why have been going around the internet beyond my geographic location for advice on how I can get a grant for my research experiment in America all for the sake of humanity… I hope to get reply from you soon… ILU

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