I'm really torn between the pro and con positions on scientists being advocates. I'm torn because I understand the con point of view, which comes with the assumption that scientists have a finite area of expertise. In cases I agree, however that does not change my position that scientists should be advocates.
Scientists are great and fast learners, we shouldn’t put limits on their ability to be advocates, we would be doing ourselves a disservice. Some scientists work their entire lives to discover new and exciting information, they should be able to share and be passionate about their research. We have to remember that scientists are people too, they have a moral compass. I believe if that compass points in the direction of educating people on their findings then they should.
|BE AN ADVOCATE TOO!|
“Scientists' obligation to advocate is likely greater than most citizens obligation, given scientists' deeper understanding of relevant facts.”(Nelson et al., 2008)
I believe that if some science goes misunderstood we as a society could face areas of struggle. Scientist don’t have to be involved in policy making but could be the unbiased information and facts behind a policy. Scientists could also guide us in the direction toward conservation by presenting the devastatingly honest and sometimes scary statistics that are occasionally dulled by the media. While scientists do run the risk of losing credibility I believe that not advocating for information that could possible aid in the survival of a particular species and or humans would be much more devastating.
Nelson, M. P., & Vucetich, J. A. (2009). On Advocacy by Environmental Scientists: What, Whether, Why, and How. Conservation Biology, 23(5), 1090-1101.