Panel Discussion Set on Science, Public Policy
Author, Pulitzer Prize Winner, Environmentalist are Guests
Alarmed at the prospect of governments staking claims to the Arctic Ocean as the polar ice cap melts, Dr. Britt Cartrite, assistant professor of political science, moved to publicize the disconnect between scientific research, media interpretation and public policy.
He has organized two sessions to promote discussion of the nature of uncertainty in any scientific research, the role of the media in partially skewing such uncertainty, and the difficulty in conveying research to policy makers to inform policy.
A panel presentation titled "Science, the Media, and Public Policy" features guest speakers Henry Pollack, University of Michigan professor of geophysics and author of Uncertain Science… Uncertain World; Susan Kelleher, Pulitzer-Prize winning journalist from the Seattle Times; and Lana Pollack, president of the Michigan Environmental Council. The presentation is scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 1, at 7 p.m. in Dow Science Center, Skinner Lecture Hall (L1). Each speaker makes a 15-minute statement before the audience participates in discussion.
A faculty/guest roundtable discussion of current debates regarding scientific research and the apparent gap between scientific research and public policy is scheduled for Feb. 1 at 4 p.m. in Swanson Academic Center, Room 113.
"My interest in the topic comes from a series of articles in the New York Times last fall that inspired me to put together a new course: Arctic Politics and Science," Cartrite says. "The articles focused in part on the ongoing uncertainty regarding a melting polar cap while, simultaneously, governments with waters in the region are scrambling to make claims to the area in the expectation of new oil/natural gas reserves as well as opening up new transshipment lanes. There is increasing scientific research, but governments seem only partially motivated by such research and, in fact, stand to increase revenues if the cap melts. And at this point there is no agreement on who should even be part of the discussions about if or how to carve up the Arctic Ocean."
Both sessions are free and open to the public. For more information contact Cartrite at (989) 463-7370 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Posted: Fri, January 27th, 2006 at 3:09PM