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Social Responsibility in Science From the Inside Out | Annual Meeting 2017 Session

Scientific Reproducibility and Social Responsibility

In 2015, AAAS released a report on the social responsibilities of scientists, engineers, and health professionals. The executive summary states, "The notion that scientists have a responsibility to society that goes beyond their responsibilities to the profession is long-standing. Yet, there is no consensus on what the content and scope of social responsibilities are or ought to be." This session sheds further light on social responsibilities by focusing on three prominent issues that challenge socially responsible science. There are both internal pressures to the practice of science and external funding pressures that can create conflicts of interest (or the appearance of conflicts) for scientists. Finally, there is also pressure for scientists to communicate their work to the public, at the same time as there is pressure to avoid being an issue advocate. By examining the structure of these different forces from inside and outside science, the session provides a clearer picture of the nature of scientists’ social responsibilities, and how the institutions, contexts, and policies in which they work can help or hinder their achievement of socially responsible science.

Organizer: Kevin C. Elliott, Michigan State University

Discussant: Marc Saner, University of Ottawa


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