science-based decision making


The Scientific Integrity Act and the Importance of Storytelling in Science Communication

, Research Director, Center for Science and Democracy

My job regularly requires explaining complex science and policy topics to the media, public, and decisionmakers. So I took over the Union of Concerned Scientists’ twitter account (#GretchenTakeover) to share my top tips for talking about science in decisionmaking, examples of effective science communication, and suggestions for how to advocate for the Scientific Integrity Act.  Here are the key takeaways. Read more >

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Photo: aisletwentytwo/CC BY 2.0 (Flickr)

Is the USDA Relocation Just Good Old-Fashioned Rent Seeking?

, Economist

One of things I cherish about economists is their ability to call BS when they see it. In research settings economists tend to have a reputation for asking hard-hitting questions during seminars. They are known for having the most unpopular opinion and for being unabashedly proud of it. I’ve personally seen non-economists bristle at the thought of giving a talk to an economics-oriented audience. As someone who straddles the worlds of public health and economics I get it, trust me. I’ve been there. Read more >

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Photo: iStock.com//Alija

Vegetable Production in the US: Lots of Potatoes, More Kale, and Other Trends

, Economist

Vegetables—they’ve got me working overtime lately. That’s because my preschool-age daughter recently seems less than excited about these healthy foods. She’ll likely outgrow her (very common) picky-eater phase and enjoy vegetables. I hope.

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Map: USDA/NASS
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Photo: Audrey Eyring/UCS

Two Years of Attacks on Science are Putting Public Health and Safety at Risk

, Research scientist

Today, UCS is releasing the report “The State of Science in the Trump Era: Damage Done, Lessons Learned, and a Path to Progress.” This report is truly a culmination of the state of science in the Trump era to date. In it, we have detailed the administration’s attacks on federal science and scientists during the past two years, highlighted successes that the scientific community and their supporters have had in pushing back against these attacks, and outlined a path forward for a new Congress to hold this administration accountable for these attacks.

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Photo: Lonpicman/Wikimedia Commons

Forensics, Justice, and the Case for Science-Based Decision Making

Simon A. Cole, , UCS

Forensic science—and the language forensic scientists use to talk about their findings–has real-world impacts, sometimes life-or-death impacts, for real people. If the criminal justice system is going to really serve the cause of justice, it needs to be informed by the best available science. Unfortunately, the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) is ignoring scientific best practices, reversing progress toward improving forensic science in the U.S.

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