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Improving Science Communication with Policymakers
Recommended Practices

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Phone: (202) 885-2940 Graduate programs: spagrad@american.edu Undergraduate programs: aupublicaffairs@american.edu

Kerwin Hall

Public Affairs, School of 4400 Massachusetts Avenue NW Washington, DC 20016 United States

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Evidence-Based Science Communications with Policymakers Project

In recent years, communication scholars have tackled the study of “the science of science communication” with great energy and rigor. Yet, despite this, comparably few have systematically studied the practice of science communication aimed at the policymaking community specifically. To increase the likelihood that quality scientific findings and advice make their way into the policymaking process, we have developed a set of recommended practices for those who wish to communicate with policymakers about highly technical topics.
Recommended Practices

Research team:
Elizabeth Suhay, Associate Professor of Government, School of Public Affairs, AU
Erin Heath, Associate Director, Government Relations, AAAS
Emily Cloyd, Director, Center for Public Engagement with Science and Technology, AAAS
Erin J. Nash, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of New South Whales (Sydney)

These recommendations are based on extensive research that has proceeded in four phases: a literature review; in-person interviews with Members of Congress and staff; an original survey of hundreds of science communicators; and an analysis of expert testimony in Congress.

This research project was one of two recipients of a Building Capacity for Science Communication Partnership Award from the U.S. National Academy of Sciences

Thank you to the National Academy of Sciences and the Rita Allen Foundation for funding our research.

Our thanks as well to American University’s School of Public Affairs for sponsoring the Improving Science Communication with Policymakers event.

We would also like to thank the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the Center for Congressional and Presidential Studies for their support.

Betsy Fischer Martin, Elizabeth Suhay, Rep. Haley Stevens, Vicky Wilkins

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