Does Mainstream America Connect with Science? Let’s Close the Gap

July 2, 2013

Event: “Unscientific America" with Sheril Kirshenbaum, director of The Energy Poll at The University of Texas at Austin.

 When: 5:45 p.m., Tuesday, July 2. This event is free and open to the public.

Where: AT&T Conference Center Amphitheater (Room 204), 1900 University Ave.

Website: http://www.austinforum.org

Background: The vast majority of Americans do not see the ways in which science holds relevance in their lives, and many scientists are unable to explain why their work matters. Meanwhile, partisan

Sheril Kirshenbaum, Speaker

politics, a new media environment and religious ideologies have magnified the growing rift between science and mainstream America. Science should be a value shared by all, but it will

take more than political will to bridge what English chemist C.P. Snow once described as a “vast gulf of mutual incomprehension” between scientists and everyone else. The scientific community
must find new ways of reaching out or risk failing to influence the public, failing to inform the decision-making process, and failing to meet the greatest
challenges of the 21st century.
Sheril Kirshenbaum is director of The Energy Poll at The University of Texas at Austin where she works to enhance public understanding of energy issues and improve communication among scientists, policymakers and the public. She is the author of two books, and her writing regularly appears in magazines, newspapers and scientific publications. Previously, Kirshenbaum worked with the Webber Energy Group and Duke
University's Nicholas School of the Environment, and she served as a Senate staffer on energy issues.

For more information, contact: Faith Singer-Villalobos, Texas Advanced Computing Center, 512 232 5771.