From Shawn Otto, CEO of ScienceDebate.org (an initiative near and dear to my heart):
Barack Obama pledged to Science Debate that he would “restore the science integrity of government and restore transparency of decision-making…”
He has referred to this pledge several times since, most recently in his speech to the National Academies of Science. On March 9, the president formally asked the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) to make recommendations on how the executive branch can meet this pledge.
The OSTP has opened a public comment period regarding this directive, giving you the opportunity to share your thoughts on what the next steps should be. Comments are due by Wednesday, May 13.
The OSTP is looking for recommendations on the six issues President Obama identified in his memo:
1. hiring and keeping qualified scientists
2. defining new policies to ensure integrity
3. using “well-established scientific processes” like peer review
4. disclosing scientific findings
5. ensuring that principles of scientific integrity are being adhered to
6. adopting additional policies like whistleblower protections
The OSTP is accepting comments via email and through their blog, here.
Many organizations in Washington will be giving their opinions of what the OSTP plan should entail. We believe it is important for scientists and other science supporters to be included in that process, and for you to indicate to the White House how science and scientific integrity affect your work, your families, and your communities.
If you’re interested in more background information, visit the scientific integrity site of our friends at the Union of Concerned Scientists here.
If you like our work, please contribute – we are all volunteer, and individually funded.
Thanks — and we hope to see you this weekend in New York!
-The team at ScienceDebate.Org
(Me again: Does anyone else wonder if/when Congress will thaw to the idea of public participation?)