As a community of more than 23,000 scientists and technical experts putting science to work for a healthier planet and a safer world, the Science Network at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) can be a powerful tool for change. At UCS we believe science should be a means—and not an obstacle—to reducing racial and economic inequity and ensuring that science-based policy decisions benefit all. With that opportunity comes a responsibility: to ensure that the Science Network is, without exception, an inclusive community that embraces the full diversity of scientists and their perspectives.
Science is a human endeavor that takes place within a historical, social, and political context, and as such can reflect the biases and power structures prevalent in society at any given time. Science Network staff are still learning about how best to do our part in supporting more equitable participation and opportunity in science advocacy and addressing the additional inequalities and pressures that underrepresented scientists face as they pursue their education and career. We are more likely to develop just solutions by tapping into the skills, talents, and experiences that people of different races, ethnicities, sexual orientations, genders, and economic classes bring.
We acknowledge that scientists have sometimes exploited or excluded marginalized groups in their pursuit of knowledge. We believe that whenever possible, research should be informed by and conducted in partnership with communities that have a stake in the outcome. This increases the possibility that research, and the policy solutions informed by that research, should alleviate existing inequities and prevent additional harm.
The UCS Science Network is committed to furthering the scientific community’s understanding of racial and economic equity, and to creating an inclusive network that works to ensure the benefits of science are shared widely and fairly.