Developed by

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

logo

 

And Media Partner

logo

 


signup button

Do you care whether our government's policies are based on sound science? Worried about health or your kids' science education? Want to know what's up with climate change and energy? Or what we're doing to build the next great American economy? See the Top American Science Questions and sign the call!

signup button Science Friday NPR: why this is important

Shawn Otto's Book Fool Me Twice Book: why this is important

National Poll Poll: why this is important

Shawn Otto's Book Launch Party Video: why this is important

Uncle Sam Wants YOU for U.S. Science

Are we losing what made America great?
A Debate on Science and America’s Future

"Given the many urgent scientific and technological challenges facing America and the rest of the world, the increasing need for accurate scientific information in political decision making, and the vital role scientific innovation plays in spurring economic growth and competitiveness, we call for public debates in which the U.S. presidential and congressional candidates share their views on the issues of The Environment, Health and Medicine, and Science and Technology Policy."

AAAS 2012 Elections Site




Congressional Edition                                          

download pdf

The Top American Science Questions in 2012
Congressional Edition

"Whenever the people are well-informed," Thomas Jefferson wrote, "they can be trusted with their own government." 

Science now affects every aspect of life and is an increasingly important topic in national policymaking. 

ScienceDebate.org invited thousands of scientists, engineers and concerned citizens to submit what they felt were the the most important science questions facing the nation that the candidates for president should be debating on the campaign trail. 

ScienceDebate then worked with the leading US science and engineering organizations listed at left to refine the questions and arrive at a universal consensus on what the most important science policy questions facing the United States are in 2012.

Candidates readily debate jobs and the economy even though they are not economists; they debate foreign policy and military intervention even though they are not diplomats or generals; they debate faith and values even though they are not priests or pastors. We call on the candidates for Congress to also debate these Top American Science Questions that affect all voters' lives.

 

The Questionssignup button


Innovation | Climate Change | Research and the Future | Education
Energy | Fresh Water | The Internet | Science in Public Policy


1. Innovation and the Economy.  Science and technology have been responsible for over half of the growth of the U.S. economy since WWII, when the federal government first prioritized peacetime science mobilization. But several recent reports question America’s continued leadership in these vital areas. What policies will best ensure that America remains a world leader in innovation?




2. Climate Change.  The Earth’s climate is changing and there is concern about the potentially adverse effects of these changes on life on the planet. What is your position on cap-and-trade, carbon taxes, and other policies proposed to address global climate change—and what steps can we take to improve our ability to tackle challenges like climate change that cross national boundaries?




3. Research and the Future.  Federally funded research has helped to produce America’s major postwar economies and to ensure our national security, but today the UK, Singapore, China, and Korea are making competitive investments in research.  Given that the next Congress will face spending constraints, what priority would you give to investment in research in your upcoming budgets?




4. Education.  Increasingly, the global economy is driven by science, technology, engineering and math, but a recent comparison of 15-year-olds in 65 countries found that average science scores among U.S. students ranked 23rd, while average U.S. math scores ranked 31st.  In your view, why have American students fallen behind over the last three decades, and what role should the federal government play to better prepare students of all ages for the science and technology-driven global economy?




5. Energy.  Many policymakers and scientists say energy security and sustainability are major problems facing the United States this century. What policies would you support to meet the demand for energy while ensuring an economically and environmentally sustainable future?




6. Fresh Water.  Less than one percent of the world’s water is liquid fresh water, and scientific studies suggest that a majority of U.S. and global fresh water is now at risk because of increasing consumption, evaporation and pollution.  What steps, if any, should the federal government take to secure clean, abundant fresh water for all Americans?




7. The Internet.  The Internet plays a central role in both our economy and our society.  What role, if any, should the federal government play in managing the Internet to ensure its robust social, scientific, and economic role?




8. Science in Public Policy.  We live in an era when science and technology affect every aspect of life and society, and so must be included in well-informed public policy decisions.  How will you ensure that policy and regulatory decisions are fully informed by the best available scientific and technical information, and that the public is able to evaluate the basis of these policy decisions?