Scientist Involvement in the Political Arena

IN Discussion Topics, Uncategorized

Presidential campaign years always raise awareness of politics and policy and how they may affect our daily lives. Scientists as a group are particularly apathetic when is comes to political advocacy. A recent article by Thomas Pollard in Cell  (The Obligation of Biologists to Commit Political Advocacy) pointed out that in light of a decline in NIH funding since 2003, and despite being highly educated, very few scientists hold positions in Congress, the main body that decides funding for science. Furthermore, Pollard claims that  as a group, scientists ‘are the least engaged in advocacy’, and have been complacent about science funding. Does this complacency also reveal a lack of passion for science and its role in society?   Regardless of political affiliations, Pollard points out multiple ways that scientists can get involved in the political process and advocate for support of science. A thoughtful article and call to action for all scientists.