By Robert Cooper, Ph.D. / March for Science
On April 14, San Diego’s science supporters will once again join the region’s world-leading scientists in the second annual March For Science! This unique and free event will take place at Waterfront Park, 1600 Pacific Hwy at 10 AM and is aimed at all audiences. It promises something for anyone who likes science, with educational speakers, a family-friendly science expo, and a march full of creative signs and costumes.
The March For Science movement began last year when online groups of science supporters went unexpectedly viral, around America and across the world. It has become both the largest popular movement supporting scientifically-backed policy in history and a unique opportunity for the public and scientists to connect face-to-face.
Around 15,000 San Diegans joined the event in 2017, as America’s Finest City played a leading role among the million people who came out in hundreds of cities around the world, including all 7 continents!
This year, San Diego’s organizers are preparing a full slate of inspiring speakers to showcase the diverse range of science happening in San Diego, from students to world-renowned professors. One speaker of note is Professor Rob Knight, a leading scientist studying how the bacteria inside us affect our health.
There will also be an outdoor science expo, with exhibits from the Fleet Science Center, San Diego Natural History Museum, local research institutions, and more.
The organizers say they have two equally important goals, “First, we want to connect our community with the amazing science going on in our city. Second, we are marching for public policy that both supports and is supported by, science.”
The message of the march is a clear statement about public policy, but the organizers say that does not mean it has to be partisan. “We believe support for science should be a universal American value, regardless of other beliefs.”
One issue science advocates have been following closely was the federal budget, in which investment in research only narrowly escaped potentially devastating proposed cuts. They are also concerned about issues like the disappearance of public information about climate change from government websites, and ongoing disbanding of scientific advisory panels.
“Science is fun,” say the organizers, “but it also makes a huge contribution to our economy, our health, and our everyday lives. We need to demand that our representatives keep investing in our future through science and that they use science to make the best possible decisions for America!”
March For Science – San Diego is organized by San Diego for Science, a new, all-volunteer nonprofit that was founded to support the march and other science outreach. More information can be found online at https://sandiegoforscience.