Advocating for Science and Scientists

Now more than ever — whether it’s in everyday conversations with friends and family, or in lobbying government for support and funding — we need advocates for science. The events in the Advocating for Science and Scientists series will provide information, tools and skills to better equip you to advocate for basic research, higher education, science funding, and scientific rigor in policy and decision-making.


All Advocating for Science and Scientists Series events are co-presented by the Graduate Division and the Science Policy Group at UCSF. Other advocacy-related events are listed below for your interest. These may be hosted by other groups as indicated.

Upcoming Events

Joe Palca, NPR Science Correspondent, Chats with Carry the One Radio | August 29, 4:30 p.m. – 7:30 p.m., Genentech Hall, Rm N114, Mission Bay campus

Carry the One Radio — a UCSF graduate student-run science podcast — invites all graduate students and postdocs to take advantage of this rare opportunity to hear from Joe Palca, science correspondent for National Public Radio, host of Joe's Big Idea, and occasional host of Science Friday. Carry the One will engage with Palca about his endeavor to provide a national forum for young science communicators, called "Friends of Joe's Big Idea," and they will chat about creative science communications more broadly. RSVP through OrgSync.

"Hashtag Science" | August 31, 6:30 p.m. – 9 p.m., Pier 17, Suite 800, San Francisco

This external event, organized by Swissnex, looks really interesting. The description on the host's website reads: "More than half of all online users use social media to learn about breaking news. How can scientists and communicators tap the power of social media to cut through the clutter and tell their stories? As social media transforms the way the public consumes news, science communicators have an exciting opportunity to effectively and memorably spread their message." The event is FREE, but you'll need to register online.

Postdoc Slam | Sept 19, 4 p.m. – 6 p.m., Byers Auditorium, UCSF Mission Bay campus

The second annual Postdoc Slam competition will culminate in this live event, in which seven to 10 postdoc finalists will present their research through engaging three-minute talks. This event is likely to be standing-room only, so mark your calendar and plan to show up early! The winner of the competition will be awarded a $3,000 cash prize; the runner-up $1,500; and the "people's choice" $750. A reception will follow the postdoc presentations, giving the judges a little time to deliberate, and awardees will be announced at the reception. Note that YOU may also be a judge! The winner of the "People's Choice" category ($750 prize) will be chosen by the audience present. Postdoc Slam is held every year in September during National Postdoc Appreciation Week. Its sister event, Grad Slam — featuring graduate students, takes place in March.

Previous Events

Advocacy 101
We had a fantastic turnout for Science Advocacy 101, a forum with Vice Chancellor for Science Policy and Strategy Keith Yamamoto and leaders in science advocacy across UCSF, on March 27. Watch Advocacy 101, moderated by Dr. Liz Silva, associate dean of graduate programs. Like slides? Watch the classroom capture version.

Twitter for Science
Co-hosted with UCSF University Relations, this hands-on practical workshop offered something for everyone, from the new user who's always wondered what Twitter is all about, to the seasoned tweeter. The workshop also prepared attendees to at the April 22 March for Science in Washington and sattelite march in San Francisco. Watch Twitter for Science on YouTube.

"Stand Up for Science" Teach-In and Rally
UCSF held this event to stand in solidarity with members of the academic and scientific communities with a teach-in and rally on the morning of Saturday, April 22 — the same day as the March for Science in Washington and sattelite march in San Francisco. The teach-in featured UCSF faculty members who have pursued research that has clashed with political sentiments. Immediately after the teach-in, members of the Bay Area life sciences community spoke out for our shared values of diversity and inclusion in advancing scientific discovery. The event was co-hosted by UCSF, in partnership with the California Life Sciences Association and Gladstone Institutes. You can still see video from the event.

Dealing With Science Denial and Why I Don't Call It That Anymore
This event featured Dr. Ann Reid, executive director of the National Center for Science Education. (Watch a video of the event and read Reid's March 7, 2017 article "Why NCSE is Marching for Science" in the Huffington Post.)

Watch this page for more events, coming soon!