Michael Halpern

Program manager, Center for Science & Democracy

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Michael Halpern is an expert on political interference in science and solutions to reduce suppression, manipulation, and distortion of government science. See Michael's full bio.

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Michael's Latest Posts

Questioning House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith’s Claims of NOAA Misconduct

For several months, House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith has been unable to justify his investigation into the work of NOAA climate scientists whose research finds that global warming has not slowed in recent years. Yesterday, in a letter to Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker, Smith offered up an explanation: there are “whistleblowers” working with his office who contend that NOAA rushed the study to publication. Read more >

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Refugees are LESS Likely to Be Terrorists, and Xenophobia Hurts Democracy

The decision on whether and on what conditions to accept refugees is a policy one. But that decision should take into account evidence, and not be based on bombast or uninformed fear. The exclusion of an entire group of people based on religion or ethnicity or national origin cannot be justified by the evidence, is morally disgraceful and un-American, and ultimately plays into the hands of ISIS. Read more >

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American Meteorological Society Slams House Science Committee Witch Hunt

The American Meteorological Society today issued a strongly-worded letter condemning House Science Committee Chairman Lamar Smith’s ongoing harassment of government climate scientists. The letter is in response to a demand made by Chairman Smith under new, unilateral subpoena powers for all correspondence, notes and other materials from the last seven years related to the work of certain NOAA climate scientists. Read more >

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The House Science Committee’s Witch Hunt Against NOAA Scientists

We have long been suspicious of the House Science Committee’s expanded subpoena power. The evidence now demonstrates that the committee is using this new authority not to conduct effective oversight but to harass those who produce robust scientific analysis it refuses to accept. Read more >

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Yes, We Can Defend Scientists from Harassment AND Increase Transparency

We’ve written extensively about the use of open records laws to harass scientists for the past couple years and encouraged governments, academic institutions, and journalists to address the challenge of balancing accountability and academic freedom. The issue has taken on a new dimension in recent weeks, as high profile releases have brought significant attention to the work of academics throughout the country. Will this prompt institutions to figure out better solutions? Read more >

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