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Conversation, Community, & Connections at the intersection of Science & the Web
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Friday, February 1 • 4:00pm - 5:00pm
Mixing science journalism with activism: The promise and the peril

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Both scientists and science writers are trained to be skeptical, both prioritize evidence-based knowledge over intuitions and premoninitions, and both believe the scientific method is the best tool we have for understanding the world we live in. This creates unique opportunities for collaboration and cooperation -- witness ScienceOnline -- but also present unique challenges. What is the appropriate border between writing about a topic and advocating for a cause? Does writing passionately about biological diversity and its losses automatically make one an environmental activist? Does writing about the harmful effects of vaccine denialism mean it's appropriate to partner with the CDC on communication strategies? What do science writers risk when they use their knowledge and connections to influence public policy? This session, led by two writers who have dealt with these issues in their own work, will be structured as a lively discussion on a topic about which there are few clear answers and many strong opinions.


David Quammen

Credentials: | | Institution: | | Biography: DAVID QUAMMEN is the author of twelve books, including The Song of the Dodo, The Reluctant Mr. Darwin, and most recently Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic, published in 2012 by W.W. Norton. He’s a Contributing Writer for National Geographic, in whose service he travels often, usually to wild places, and a three-time recipient of the National Magazine Award. He has also... Read More →

Friday February 1, 2013 4:00pm - 5:00pm
Room 4

Attendees (36)