Conflict of Interest


Talking Conflicts of Interest, Bias, and Sunshine in the Dietary Guidelines

, science and policy analyst, Center for Science and Democracy

Yesterday, I testified at a meeting of the National Academy of Medicine advisory committee to review the process to update the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. You might remember that Congress mandated the formation of this committee earlier this year. Their first charge is to write a report with recommendations on how the Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) selection process can be improved to provide more transparency, minimize bias, and include committee members with a range of viewpoints. This is a topic we’ve thought a lot about here at the Center for Science and Democracy. Read more >

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Endangered Columbian white-tailed deer on Tenasillahe Island at Julia Butler Hansen National Wildlife Refuge in Oregon.

New Endangered Species Peer-Review Policy Scores A Point for Independent Science

, lead analyst, Center for Science and Democracy

Today, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) released an update to its peer review policy for endangered species listings. The new policy takes a step forward in terms of safeguarding the science that informs endangered species listing decisions. While the provisions could be stronger in a few areas, the new policy takes strong steps toward more robust and transparent peer-review at the agency, following efforts by a group of independent scientists working with the Union of Concerned Scientists and others to improve science-based decisions around endangered species. Read more >

Photo: Blu Chaney, USFWS: CC BY 2.0/Flickr
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A vat of corn syrup

New FDA Ruling Doesn’t Close Industry’s Favorite Food Safety Loophole

, science and policy analyst, Center for Science and Democracy

It doesn’t seem like too much to ask for the public to be able to count on the FDA to ensure that all substances added to foods are proven safe. The FDA disappointed many interested in a safer food system earlier this month when it released its final ruling detailing its authority for the Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) process. Read more >

Photo: tracyshaun
Flickr/Uwe Hermann
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The Trouble with Science Funding

, lead analyst, Center for Science and Democracy

“We should acknowledge the elephant in the room” one panelist said.

Last week I attended a half-day event put on by Scientific American.  The topic was media coverage of scientific topics and the “elephant” was the event’s corporate sponsorship. Read more >

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Willie Soon, Academic Freedom, and How We Can Deal With Undisclosed Conflicts of Interest

, lead analyst, Center for Science and Democracy

In the last week, the Internet has blown up. There were llamas, dresses, and bird-riding weasels. But what also blew up was an important discussion about conflict of interest disclosure and what information academic scientists should be expected to make public. Above all else, the debate has made clear that conflict of interest disclosure rules are lacking and that we need clarity from Congress, scientific societies, and academic institutions on how these issues should be addressed. Read more >

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