The speaker lineup is set for the third day of the July 2022 MSE virtual symposium, which is focused on “Transforming your research for policy engagement”. This session will feature three talks featuring researchers who have experience bringing research to the public and to legislative bodies. So often, the positive outcomes of research are limited because it can be difficult to get the word out to people who can put our results into practice. Our hope is that attendees for this session learn from different perspectives how to write their research to inform the general public, professionals in healthcare, or policy makers.
The program for the July 2022 MSE virtual symposium, “Developing transformative Research Skills”, is beginning to take shape as we continue to confirm speakers for the 5 sessions, the full program for which can be found here.
Session 3: “Transforming your research for policy engagement”
Wednesday, July 20th, 12:30 ~ 16:00 EST. Register for this session, it’s free and will be held over Zoom.
Mallory Choudoir, Ph.D. Soil microbial ecologist. Postdoctoral Researcher at University of Massachusetts Amherst. Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist at North Carolina State University September 2022.
Mustafa Saifuddin, Ph.D., Staff Scientist, Sustainable Food and Farming Program at Earthjustice
Amali Stephens, PhD Student, Interdepartmental Microbiology, Iowa State University
Scope: Microbiomes drive processes in all environments and are intimately intertwined with all aspects of our lives. Despite the central role of microbes in shaping systems, microbial researchers are often detached from shaping policies related to conservation, public health, land use, environmental justice, climate and other areas of intersection. Policy engagement is not typically included in the academic training of microbiome researchers, and there is a need for greater coordination between policy needs and microbial research. This session will explore integrated, collaborative approaches to research and policy making.
Learning Objectives of Session: Attendees will discuss 1) how to develop research in collaboration with policy needs, 2) policy levels and types (government, private), 3) how to identify stakeholders, and 4) how to communicate your research to policymakers.
Format of talks: Three 30-min lecture-style talks will describe interdisciplinary research outcomes which transcend typical academic endpoints and engage in shaping policy.
Format of breakout rooms: Each room will create a policy brief outline or ideas list around a particular topic area (e.g. environmental restoration) to help audience members group by discipline.
Session Speakers: In development, details provided soon!
Dr. Caitlyn Hall, PhD., Assistant Professor of Practice, University of Arizona
“The Elephant in the Lab: How can scientists engage in policy and advocacy?”
Dr. Kathleen Treseder, PhD., Howard A. Schneiderman Endowed Chair and Professor of Biology at the University of California Irvine; Climate Activist; Irvine City Council Candidate
“My experience advocating for environmental policy with local policy makers: What worked, what didn’t.”
Dr. Sonja Birthisel, Ph.D., Director, The Wilson Center at the University of Maine; Councilor, Orono Maine Town Council; Faculty Associate, University of Maine School of Forest Resources
“Public Policy Engagement & Personal Sustainability: What’s Your “Sparkle Zone”?”
12:30 – 14:15 Introduction and Speakers
14:15 – 14:30 Break
14:30 – 16:00 Breakout room discussions based on skills development, in smaller groups
- How to talk to your politicians about science
- How scientists get involved with policy
- Curriculum for science policy
- Environmental microbial policy issues
- Microbial conservation
- Soil carbon & climate justice issues
- Agricultural antibiotic use
- Microbial exposures (residential, worker exposure)
Prior to this session, you may want to watch these recorded talks:
- “The Human Microbiome and Health Inequities”. Dr. Katherine (Katie) Amato, PhD.
- “Decomposition as Life Politics”. Dr. Kristina Lyons, PhD.
- “Microbiomes and climate change at the intersection of human and ecosystem health in the North”. Dr. Catherine Girard, PhD.
- “Connecting environmental microbiomes to social (in)equity across temporal and ecological scales”. Dr. Erin Eggleston, PhD and Dr. Mallory Choudoir, PhD.