Science Rising is a nationwide mobilization effort taking place throughout 2018 in the run-up to the midterm elections. It is not a one-day march—it is a series of local actions, events, and activities organized by many different groups. Many activities are local events; others are online and open to anyone, anywhere.
Our shared goal is to ensure that science is front-and-center in the decision-making processes that affect us all—and to fight back against efforts that sideline science from its crucial role in our democracy.
Check out #ScienceRising throughout April and May for spotlights on ways people are taking their advocacy to the next level, followed by a steady increase in resources and trainings throughout the summer. And keep an eye out for the slate of events to increase over the summer and fall, especially as the midterm elections draw closer. See our Resources and FAQ pages to learn more about how you can get involved and join—or organize—an activity in your area.
In the past year, it has become clear that powerful interests are actively sidelining science and creating serious threats to our health and safety, our climate, and to the role of science in our democracy. But it’s also clear that there’s enormous energy to put science to work for justice and the public interest. We’ve seen an uprising of grassroots organizations and activists around the country who are standing up to attacks on science and mobilizing to reclaim democratic power.
The threats we face now make it imperative that we call out attacks on science when we see them and hold our decision makers accountable when they attempt to distort, discredit, or sideline the scientific evidence that we need to protect our health and safety. It is essential that we re-affirm and re-energize our commitment to science as a tool for justice—and continue to build a broad, long-term movement to carry these values forward in the years to come.
Together, we can send the strong message that the scientific community—and indeed, anyone who cares about the crucial role of science in our democracy—will resist attacks on science and fight to advance the role of science for change and progress.
What are we fighting for?
These are the core principles of Science Rising:
Our health and safety depend on science. We cannot fully protect Americans’ health and safety without access to science. Vital science-based protections prevent exposure to lead, mercury, and unsafe pesticides, pharmaceuticals, and consumer products, along with many other threats to our food, air, and water.
Science should support equity and justice. All too often, the benefits of scientific and technological advances have not been equitably shared. It is not enough to develop solutions that improve health, security, and the environment at a general level; science can and should be applied to reduce racial, social, and economic inequities.
We all suffer when science becomes partisan. Science is non-partisan and should inform decision making no matter which party is in power. All government officials should be expected to resist the temptation to politicize science or muzzle scientific experts. We must be vigilant to ensure that publicly funded and independent science is never suppressed, censored, or manipulated.
A healthy democracy requires honesty and accountability. Lying to the public for private or political gain is always wrong. We should all be able to know the facts, even when they are inconvenient—especially when they are inconvenient. Public officials and private interests should face consequences when they mislead the public.
The public has a right to know. Taxpayers have a right to access the methodology and results of public research, and to privately funded scientific information that can help keep us safe. The public has a right to access scientific information, especially when the information has implications for public health and safety.
We all need to stand up for science. All of us—not just scientists but also educators, business people, and other concerned individuals—need to speak out when science is ignored, manipulated, or censored. Such actions undermine our democracy, inhibit progress, increase inequity, and lead to decisions that endanger our health and safety. The scientific community can and should foster a culture of science advocacy that encourages scientists and those who want to protect science to engage in their local communities and participate in the policymaking and political process.
Who are we? Partners of Science Rising
Science Rising is a broad-based effort collectively organized by an array of participating organizations and individuals. The Union of Concerned Scientists supports and maintains the Science Rising calendar of events.
Any group or individual who lists an event is considered a valuable partner of Science Rising. Some groups are taking a more active leadership role in this effort; they are listed below as organizing and coalition partners. If you are interested in becoming more involved in the overall Science Rising effort, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- 500 Women Scientists
- Brandeis Science Policy Initiative
- Ciencia Puerto Rico
- Cornell Advancing Science and Policy
- East Coast Science Advocacy Hub
- Ecological Society of America Science Policy Section
- Future of Research
- Milwaukee Area Science Advocates
- RISE Stronger Science and Technology Working Group
- Scholars Strategy Network
- Science Informed Leadership
- Science Policy Initiative at UVA
- Union of Concerned Scientists