September 3, 2013
In August, biological researchers and educators participated in the 5th Annual Biological Sciences Congressional District Visits event. This nationwide event enabled scientists to meet with their members of Congress in their local area rather than in Washington, DC, and allowed elected officials to learn first-hand about the science and research facilities in their district.
Scientists participating in the event discussed the importance of life sciences research with the individuals responsible for casting the votes that shape the nation's science policy.
Highlights of the event include:
Over 100 scientists took part in the event. Individuals from 34 states signed up to meet with their elected officials. Participants ranged from graduate students to senior researchers and educators.
Individuals in the 2013 event participated in an interactive training webinar. The program provided information about how best to communicate science to non-technical audiences, tips for conducting a successful meeting with an elected official, and information about trends in funding for research.
The 5th Annual Biological Sciences Congressional District Visits were made possible by the American Institute of Biological Sciences and Entomological Society of America, with support from event sponsors: American Society of Naturalists, Botanical Society of America, Harvard Museum of Comparative Zoology, Natural Science Collections Alliance, Organization of Biological Field Stations, and Society for the Study of Evolution.
The 6th annual event will be held in August 2014. More information will be posted in spring 2014 at http://www.aibs.org/public-policy/congressionaldistrictvisits.html.