A new graduate student initiative wants to combat the scourge of misinformation around science topics, such as climate change, by teaching communication skills to scientists. The initiative, called Scientists Speak Up, is sponsored this quarter by Stanford Bioscience Student Association. It convenes students and postdocs across science fields and gives them resources and training to effectively communicate to anyone about controversial topics that have scientific consensus.
The group will hold its official launch event on April 25, and graduate students and postdocs across science disciplines are encouraged to join.
“We empower scientists to speak up for the facts because, for certain topics, the facts simply don’t speak for themselves,” said Kameron Rodrigues, a graduate student studying computational and systems immunology, and one of the co-founders of Scientists Speak Up. To teach communication skills, the group focuses on discussing climate change because it intersects all scientific fields and is one of the world’s most pressing issues.
Scientists Speak Up is a SPICE (Student Projects for Intellectual Community Enhancement)-funded project.
The group leaders include Kameron Rodrigues, a 2017 Stanford Graduate Fellow and Hanon McShea, a 2018 EDGE-STEM Fellow.