2005 Events

Roger Pielke

The Politicization of Science: A Perspective
Dr. Roger Pielke
Professor of Environmental Studies
Director, Center For Science and Technology Policy
University of Colorado at Boulder
April 8, 2005
It seems like science is in public view more so today than in the past, and not always for the best reasons. For example, the Union of Concerned Scientists and Congressman Henry Waxman (D-CA), have in recent years highlight the “misuse” of science by the Administration of George W. Bush, prompting a vigorous rebuttal. In addition, issues such as scientific advisory panels, prescription drugs, global climate change, stem cell research, and terrorism are forcing science into the public eye. Dr. Pielke’s talk will take a critical perspective on the current state of science, policy, and politics in the United States with a particular emphasis on the role of experts in science in policy and politics.


Dealing With Scientific Uncertainty in Policymaking

Dr. Roger Pielke
Professor of Environmental Studies
Director, Center For Science and Technology Policy
University of Colorado at Boulder
April 7, 2005
Uncertainty is ever present in decision making. But even as scientists typically have sophisticated understandings of uncertainty itself, such understandings are infrequently accompanied by a corresponding sophistication in decision making in the face of uncertainty. This talk will discuss a range of experiences in dealing with scientific uncertainty in policymaking to suggest how the scientific community might more effectively contribute useful guidance on important policy issues characterized by fundamental uncertainties. Dr. Pielke’s talk will emphasize both the use of science in decision making, but also decisions that are made about science, typically under an expectation that the results of resulting research will inform decision making. Consequently, issues of values, ethics and politics are inescapable when one confronts scientific uncertainty in policy making.


Frankenfood or Fearmongering?

The Science and Politics of Genetically Modified Food
Michael Rodemeyer, J.D.
Executive Director
Pew Initiative on Food and Biotechnology
February 4, 2005
Last year, American farmers grew more genetically-modified (GM) crops than ever before. About 75% of the processed foods in U.S. stores are estimated to contain ingredients derived from GM crops. Concerns have been raised about food safety and environmental risks, the ethics of seed patenting, and economic impact of GM crops on small farmers. The controversy has spilled over into the international trade arena, leading to a U.S. trade complaint against the EU, where consumer opposition to biotech foods is strong. Few technologies have generated so much global confusion and conflict as GM food. Why is this technology so controversial? The lecture will review the current state of science on GM crops and discuss the key role of values in shaping public attitudes and the different political responses to the technology around the world. Click here for the video of Mr. Rodemeyer’s talk Click here to hear Mr. Rodemeyer on “The Conversation”, a local news talk radio program on KUOW 94.9 Click here to see our topics page on Genetically Modified Organisms Opinion pieces by Michael Rodemeyer: Technology moves faster than regulators USA Today Corn fight, Science suffers when the debate gets personal San Francisco Chronicle