Science Advisory Committees

Though little known to the public, federal science advisory committees play a key role in meeting policymakers’ need for access to independent science advice. Unfortunately, they have also been targets of political interference and neglect, which reached unprecedented levels under the Trump administration.


John Klossner

Science After Trump: What We Learned and How the Biden Administration Can Build Back

, Research Director, Center for Science and Democracy

I have studied science used and misused by US presidents for a decade, but the Trump era kicked that work to a new level. In less than four years, we have logged more than 160 attacks on science (and counting)—more than any other president in the last seven decades. From ignoring evidence of harm to gagging federal scientists to suppressing inconvenient science, the administration has disrespected the crucial role that science and technical experts have long played across the government, under both parties, to protect public health, safety, and the environment. Now we must rebuild and build better at the same time. Read more >

John Klossner
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Drew Hays/Unsplash

A Biased Science Board Threatens Future Fetal Tissue Research

, Senior Analyst

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to risk our lives and livelihoods, our government assures us it’s doing everything it can to develop treatments and vaccines. Instead, it’s using every play in an anti-science playbook to defund research and block medical researchers from making safe and effective discoveries. Read more >

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White House

Trump Axing Advisory Committees Is Bad for Farmers and Nation’s Food Supply

, Economist

Earlier this summer, the Trump administration issued an Executive Order that would arbitrarily eliminate one-third of all federal advisory committees (FACs) not mandated by statute across the government, while restricting an agency’s ability to form new FACs. FACs provide an avenue for outside experts and stakeholders to weigh in on federal programs and policies, including roughly 150 that advise the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) on a variety of food and farming issues. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and other agency and department heads have until today to make these cuts. Read more >

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Brace Yourself for Unhealthy Air: The Trump Administration Weakens Clean Air Protections

, Research Director, Center for Science and Democracy

The president’s order is bad news for anyone that breathes air in this country. Read more >

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Photo: sharply_done/iStockphoto

New Report Reveals Trump Administration Is Abandoning Science Advice

, Senior Analyst

Experts serving as members of federal advisory committees are being frozen out of the very avenues that were designed to encourage external input on scientific issues to the federal government. Read more >

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