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The behind-the-scenes people and organizations connecting science and decision-making

Listening to science is a lot easier for politicians when behind-the-scenes intermediaries are there to help. Morsa Images/DigitalVision via Getty Images

The behind-the-scenes people and organizations connecting science and decision-making

Listening to science is a lot easier for politicians when behind-the-scenes intermediaries are there to help. Morsa Images/DigitalVision via Getty Images

The behind-the-scenes people and organizations connecting science and decision-making

Listening to science is a lot easier for politicians when behind-the-scenes intermediaries are there to help. Morsa Images/DigitalVision via Getty Images

The behind-the-scenes people and organizations connecting science and decision-making

Listening to science is a lot easier for politicians when behind-the-scenes intermediaries are there to help. Morsa Images/DigitalVision via Getty Images

Sometimes individuals or organizations naturally broker information between scientists and policymakers, even though it may not be a stated part of their job.

Stephen Posner, University of Vermont and Jennifer Watling Neal, Michigan State University

The role of science in society has never been more important. Scientific perspectives are critical for understanding complex issues such as the COVID-19 pandemic, climate change, access to higher education and systemic racism.

The Biden administration promises to “listen to the science” and “marshal the forces of science.”

But how does scientific information actually make its way from researcher to policymaker? We study the individuals and organizations that serve as intermediaries between these two worlds. After reviewing hundreds of cases, we found intermediaries not only help translate science but often facilitate two-way relationships between scientists and policymakers.

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