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Free webinar: Towards a US Research Data Framework

This webinar, co-organised by STM, CHORUS and the Center for Open Science, is part of a series organized in the context of STM’s Research Data Year presenting speakers from a variety of stakeholder groups sharing the same goal: making research data more Open and FAIR. For recordings of earlier webinars, click here.

In this webinar, Dr. Robert J. Hanisch will present NIST's initiative to create a Research Data Framework in the US with the aim of improving research integrity, cost and efficiency, risk management, and amplifying scientific discovery and innovation. The initiative is based on the demonstrated success of the “Framework for Improving Critical Infrastructure Cybersecurity” which NIST initially issued in February 2014.

Dr. Hanisch’s presentation will be followed by a panel discussion on the merits of this effort in the context of making research data more Open and FAIR, consisting of:

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Dozens of scientific journals have vanished from the internet, and no one preserved them

Eighty-four online-only, open-access (OA) journals in the sciences, and nearly 100 more in the social sciences and humanities, have disappeared from the internet over the past 2 decades as publishers stopped maintaining them, potentially depriving scholars of useful research findings, a study has found.

Read more at Science.

Science Societies Focus on Their Contributions to Advance the Scientific Enterprise

Please submit your organization’s “signature” and contributions by COB on Tuesday, September 1. See below:

The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) and the Federation of Associations in Behavioral & Brain Sciences (FABBS) are leading a group of scientific societies in compiling a list of specific examples of how scientific societies advance the scientific enterprise and the challenges and opportunities presented by the pandemic to share with the NSF COVID-19 taskforce. They are asking for help with two items:

If your organization would like to sign the letter, please do so by filling out this form.

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CSSP Chat Insights: Diversity and Equality

Our August CSSP Chat on Ensuring Diversity and Equity in STEM, led by Dr. Beronda Montogmery, brought to light many valuable ideas and thought processes around these issues. Introducing the idea gatekeeping or groundskeeping prompted lively discussion on ways to expand diversity through the cultivation and enactment of leadership philosophies and progressive vision rather than just looking at "skills and tactics." More information about this philosophy can be found in Dr. Montgomery's paper on "Academic Leadership: Gatekeeping or Groundskeeping?" published in the Journal of Values Based Leadership.

This timely conversation also included thoughts for ways in which to communicate how each society presents their culture to both current and future members. Included in those thoughts were:

  • Evaluating your society on its three “R’s”Representation, Reputation, Resources
  • Easy to embrace definitions - Diversity: being invited to the party. Inclusion: being asked to dance.
  • When considering diversity within your society, it's important to look beyond just the "numbers" and look to the practices and experiences that are lived and espoused as well.
  • Consideration for the language used when talking about these issues can also have a strong impact. An article on rethinking underrepresented language helps to see the influence that the language we use has on the way we see and are seen.
  • How and what to include in surveys to aid in garnering greater and more honest participation from members.

The CSSP Chats create an opportunity to talk with other leaders of science societies about the challenges and goals being faced by all, and to hear and share experiences for how they have been and are being addressed - including successes and failures. Our next Chat will be on the topic of Managing Personal Transitions: Leadership Skills and your next job and will be presented on Thursday, September 17th at 12:30 pm ET.

Join APS in Call for Study of Influence of Systemic Racism in Academia

Chairwoman Johnson Requests National Academies Study on the Influence of Systemic Racism in Academia

The American Physiological Society (APS) is asking you to join them in signing onto a community letter to House Science Committee Chairwoman Eddie Bernice Johnson supporting her call for a National Academies study on the influence of systemic racism in academia.

The events of the last few months have brought renewed attention to the persistent problem of racism in our society. The sciences are not immune from this systemic problem, and indeed, demographic analysis of the scientific workforce confirms a lack of racial and ethnic diversity at all levels.

In late July, Chairwoman Johnson sent a letter to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine (NASEM) asking for a study on the influence of systemic racism in academia. Her letter specifically calls for the study to examine “the extent to and ways in which systemic racism in research learning environments influences the recruitment, retention, and advancement of historically marginalized racial and ethnic groups pursuing scientific, engineering, technical, and medical careers.” She further calls for “identification and analysis of promising policies, strategies, and practices that have been the most successful in preventing and addressing systemic racism in these settings.”

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Science Elicits Hope in Americans – Its Positive Brand Doesn’t Need to Be Partisan

"...effective science communication depends on understanding the factors that influence public perceptions of science so that those doing the communicating – such as the research community, health professionals or governmental agencies – can advance greater public understanding of the science or motivate the actions of individuals, groups or society."

Read more at The Conversation.

AAAS Releases A DRAFT Plan To Address Systemic Racism In The Sciences

AAAS released a DRAFT plan to address systemic racism in the sciences as a follow-up to AAAS' participation in the STEM day shutdown that took place in June. AAAS strongly encourages comments and suggestions which can be sent to [email protected].

House released bipartisan RISE Act legislation

The U.S. House of Representatives released its bipartisan RISE (Research Investment to Spark the Economy) Act legislation (HR 7308) on June 24; on July 23 the Senate released the Senate RISE Act (S4286). This legislation would authorize $26 billion in relief for research workforce and institutions. 

FAS Congressional Science Policy Initiative

Sign up to be part of the Federation of American Scientists' (FAS) Congressional Science Policy Initiative (CSPI), a nonpartisan effort to help facilitate the engagement of scientists, engineers, technologists, and other experts with the US Legislative Branch to help produce evidence-based public policy. https://fas.org/congressional-science-policy-initiative/

July Chat Postponed

The CSSP Chat for July has been postponed. A new date will be advertised soon.

New Director Takes Helm at National Science Foundation

CSSP joins the science community in welcoming Sethuraman Panchanathan as the 15th director of NSF who has “… identified three pillars of his vision for NSF: advancing research into the future, ensuring inclusivity and continuing global leadership in science and engineering.”

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Science Magazine Reports on New Senate Science Bill

A bipartisan group of U.S. senators today proposed sweeping—and controversial—changes in how the federal government manages academic research in the face of threats from other countries.

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New CSSP Brochure

CSSP releases a new brochure. Download the PDF.

CSSP Statement on Racial Equality

The Council of Scientific Society Presidents (CSSP) stands against all manners of racial injustice. The recent events in the US have clearly shown that African Americans are attacked, dehumanized and even killed because of the amount of melanin in their skin.

The epidermis is a very thin outer layer of our skin. It is only 1 millimeter in thickness, but it contains one of the few things that seems to justify millennia of oppression between humans: pigmentation. Were it not for this tiny layer of our skin, we would all appear very similar. Thus, at its core, racism is bigotry against the epidermis, and yet this minute human difference was enough for many of our nation’s historical leaders to enable beliefs in racial superiority.”

Haywood Brown, Tampa Bay Times, June 4, 2020

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Supporting a Strong Civic Science Culture

As scientific societies, we have a unique opportunity to lead the broader scientific community towards a stronger culture of civic science, in which societal needs and diverse perspectives shape science, and scientific discoveries inform people, decisions, and policies. To that end, we are launching and circulating a sign-on values statement that asserts our commitment to civic science and urges others to increase their support for scientists’ engagements with diverse audiences.

We encourage any scientific society or professional association who shares these values to sign on to the statement and to adhere to the commitment by assessing the ways that you currently support civic science and exploring opportunities to expand your support.

By signing onto this statement, you signal to your membership and science institutions that your organization values this work and encourages more scientist engagement.

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Sen. Whitehouse & Dr. Cook-Deegan on the need to revive the OTA (op-ed)

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (RI) and Dr. Robert Cook-Deegan share some history of the Office of Technology Assessment (OTA), the nonpartisan science agency that used to service Congress in the 1990s; why it was eliminated and the value of bringing it back. Here are a few of their comments. The entire op-ed is available here

"...we’ve seen painful examples of what happens when science is sidelined. Without the OTA, unreliable and even deliberately false information fills the void."

"Or, perhaps worst of all, scientific information never makes it to Congress at all."

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ASBMB Sign On Letter to NIH Director

asbmb's RESPONSE TO THE NIH abruptly terminating funding for a years-long project

As you may be aware, the National Institutes of Health abruptly terminated funding for a years-long project studying novel coronaviruses and investigating the sources of emerging diseases. EcoHealth Alliance, the study sponsor for the project, was instructed to stop spending the remaining 2020 grant and all other grant funding has been canceled. 

Suddenly ending a grant early is a highly unusual move for the NIH. The only situations that warrant this action is when there is evidence of scientific misconduct or financial improprieties—neither of which took place in this case.  

The ASBMB invites your organization to sign onto this letter to Dr. Francis Collins calling for an explanation for why funding for this grant was rescinded, and for the independence of peer reviewed science from politically motivated interventions. Your organization can sign onto this letter by clicking here. The opportunity to sign on will remain opened until Friday, May 15, 2020.

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AAAS and AIP Sign On Letters Supporting Science

A brief, but important (and time sensitive) message regarding two sign on letters supporting science. Both letters are available to be read, and add your society's name from the links below. Please reach out to either the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) or the American Institute of Physics (AIP) for additional information, if needed.

AAAS response to the EPA supplemental ‘Secret Science’ Strengthening Transparency Rule

As you may know, the EPA has issued a supplement to the ‘Secret Science’ Strengthening Transparency Rule. AAAS has written the attached comments of concern which we plan to post to the federal register on the EPA deadline of May 18th. We are circulating these comments among our societies and it would strengthen our submission to get as much support as possible to show the EPA the broad coalition of those with the scientific, university and health communities that are concerned about this proposal. The final letter can be found here.

Please direct any questions to Sean Gallagher of AAAS at [email protected].

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ASA, CSSA, and SSSA Share Paper on NIFA Funding

CSSP members - the tri-societies  - the American Society of Agronomy, the Crop Science Society of America, and the Soil Science Society of America shared the following important information, which requires broader delivery. Should you have questions, please let us know and we will make sure to get those questions forwarded to the tri-societies 

"I want share with you the latest efforts to help the research community recover from the impacts of shutdowns during the COVID-19 crisis.

The tri-societies have been working with our partners to quickly develop a concept paper on the supplemental funding needs of NIFA. While imprecise due to all of the unknowns, we project NIFA will need around $150 million to provide up to 12 months of supplemental funding to existing grantees. The concept also envisions an additional $80 million investment in extension to increase its capacity to virtually provide essential programming and engagement services. This initial draft has been shared with House and Senate appropriators and the ag committees to ensure NIFA is included in the coming negotiations.

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Register now for CSSP's Virtual Leadership Workshop

Based on planning calls that have been taking place with our respected speakers we can say, with strong conviction, that you are going to want to make sure to register for the Council of Scientific Society Presidents (CSSP) Virtual Leadership Workshop on May 2 - 4, 2020

Monday's session on developing a strategic framework will include an opportunity to engage in a strategic planning exercise, focusing on outcome based planning for your organization to create a vision, direction, and plan for its future. MICHAEL MOLONEY, CEO of American Institute of Physics (AIP), will share how AIP answered some imperative questions around "why they are" and "how they fit into the physical sciences" as well as some do's and don't's they learned along the way. JOEL SACHS, a Principal with the The Sachs Groups, will lead those attending through an interactive exercise so everyone can leave with a first cut for growth for their specific society.  He will work with Michael and AIP as example for each step and give time for the attendees to complete the step. 

Following this session - and each session - small group breakout rooms will allow participants the chance to network with one another, as well as with our speakers.

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