February 5, 2008

Since the movement for an official presidential debate focused on science was launched in December 2007, Science Debate 2008 has gained momentum continuously. For evidence of this, just check out its news page, or take a look at the long lists of influential organizations and individuals, bloggers, and signatories in general supporting this initiative.

And, as of today, Science Debate 2008 can add a few more to the list:

February 4 -- The National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine are joining the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Carnegie Institution, the Council on Competitiveness, and several other organizations and universities in an effort to co-sponsor a presidential candidate debate on science, technology, health, and the economy. "This would provide a nonpartisan setting to educate voters on the candidates' positions on key science, technology, and health challenges facing the next administration, while giving the candidates an opportunity to discuss issues that are often overlooked in presidential candidate debates but that are critical to U.S. competitiveness," the presidents of the NAS, NAE, and IOM said in a statement.

"A discussion focused on such issues as how to spur innovation, improve science and math education, confront climate change, and guide advances in biotechnology would do much to inform the American electorate," the statement adds. The NAS, NAE, and IOM are independent, nonprofit organizations that provide advice on policy issues to the government and public under an 1863 congressional charter.

Chris Mooney and Sheril Kirshenbaum of The Intersection have been working hard to build support across the internet for Science Debate 2008, and it looks like it just might happen. I'll certainly be looking forward to it if it does!

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