Monday, May 28, 2018
Chris Schaffer doesn't just teach about the intersection of science and policy in his bootcamp course. Engaged students learn about the policymaking process through active research and advocacy work. Sure, some class time is devoted to broadening student perspectives on science policy through lectures by Cornell faculty and visiting government officials, group discussions of reading assignments, and other activities. But the primary activity of the course is a real policy-making exercise that builds over the course of the full semester. Teams of students identify an issue at the intersection of science and public policy, thoroughly research the issue, formulate a detailed plan to address the issue, and implement their plan for solving the problem toward the end of the term.
One such project went live to advance policy ideas in the form of an opinion piece on PA live, Pennsylvania's source for breaking news. Matthew Lam, Charlotte Levy*, Anthony Notarobert and Lakshman Balaji spent the past semester researching natural gas leakage in Pennsylvania. Their opinion piece urges natural gas companies to work with the EPA to stop leaks and save money. A small investment of $500 per site would yield production efficiencies and increased safety that would also improve public relations and save taxpayers money.
Read the full article online here.
*Charlotte Levy, an active BEST Program participant and incoming President of Advancing Science And Policy (ASAP), is entering her 4th year of her PhD studies in Ecology and Environmental Biology. ASAP is a student run graduate organization, an offshoot of the Science Policy Bootcamp course with BEST support to encourage additional hands-on experiences and site visits to Albany and Washington D.C.