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Science and Democracy: Ways to Get Involved

Building a stronger role for science in our democracy is everybody's business. Here's how you can help.

The Center for Science and Democracy is working to strengthen the role of science in our democratic processes and policy decisions.

But we can't do it alone. We need scientists and experts, active players in the policy world, and informed, engaged citizens to help build demand for the changes we seek.

With your help, we can promote evidence-based decision making, combat efforts to misconstrue or silence science in public discussion, and equip scientists, analysts, and policy makers with the resources they need to bring science-informed solutions to our common problems.

Opportunities and Resources

Participating in the Center's mission will open the doors to action and educational opportunities on national and local levels. Through the Center, you will have access to the following:

  • Actions that protect and advance science in our public debate and policy making
  • Unique opportunities for scientists and experts to use their knowledge and skills to help foster an evidence-based approach to public policy
  • Events throughout the country, such as our solutions-focused Branscomb Science and Democracy Forums, where you can connect with other engaged citizens and experts and learn about topics in science and democracy
  • Skill-building and educational trainings and webinars on communicating science to the media and policymakers
  • Analytic products and reports illuminating the roles science has played in policy making
  • Hands-on resources to help you defend science in public discussion, including the Science in the Age of Scrutiny guide
  • News updates on pressing issues, including science and democracy-themed posts on the Union of Concerned Scientists' blog, The Equation

Ways to Take Action

Five ways you can support science and democracy right now:

  1. Help raise the public conversation about the need to restore our American roots in science. Share the "Speak Out for Science" video (see sidebar) with your friends, colleagues, policymakers, and local news stations on Facebook and Twitter and let them know that we need to bring science back into our policy debates.
  2. Tell the White House that we need agencies to establish standards for ensuring scientific information is accessible to the public and policymakers.
  3. Are you a professional in the fields of medicine or public health?
    Sign a letter from public health professionals urging Congress to allow federally-funded research that addresses gun violence. Congress needs to know that an informed, effective debate on gun prevention policies rests on thorough, credible analysis and evaluation of gun-related health and safety research.
  4. Do you have expertise on a public policy issue in your community where evidence-based knowledge isn’t being regarded by the policy makers?
    Create the space for science by meeting with your policy maker or raising the issue at a public meeting
  5. Is there public discussion on a policy issue where science needs to play a stronger role? Inject an evidence-based approach to the debate by spotlighting the science in your local media through opinion editorials or letters to the editor. Don’t forget to check out A Scientist's Guide to Talking with the Media for tips on communicating science in a way that resonates.

The domain of Science is a republic, and all its citizens are brothers and equals.

—Mark Twain


Speak Out for Science

Science is increasingly marginalized, manipulated or ignored in our public discussions—and with serious, complex problems to solve, we can't afford this. Watch our video and then Speak Out for Science by sharing it!

Join the UCS Science Network

If you're a scientist, engineer, health professional or economist with (or working toward) an advanced degree, and you support the mission of the Center for Science and Democracy, don't just stand on the sidelines—be part of the team! By joining the UCS Science Network, you will put your expertise to work helping solve some of the most pressing challenges of our time.