1. February 2024

Advocacy Impact

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ASPET Stresses the Importance of Advocating for Science

By Tricia McCarter

ASPET’s public policy efforts play a pivotal role in shaping the science advocacy conversation. From advocating on Capitol Hill—including the ASPET Council and early-career members—to advocacy letter campaigns, the Society remains committed to keeping pharmacologists involved in the public conversation.

At this intersection is an opportunity to meld science advocacy with storytelling, to bridge the gaps in understanding pertaining to one of the biggest challenges researchers face: securing funding for their work. Many pharmacologists must deal with annual Federal budget cuts that often affect the agencies that financially support their biomedical research.

In meetings with members of Congress, ASPET members connect with their legislative representatives to discuss science policy issues by localizing their concerns during this engagement process. This exchange of ideas underscores the power of storytelling as a formidable tool for ASPET. Connecting personal experiences with congressional allies who may have it in their power to further advocate for maintaining funding for science research.

Through ASPET’s signature Washington Fellows Program, ASPET is taking an active role in establishing its voice as a leader in advocating for the concerns of pharmacologists. By preparing early-career scientists to succinctly craft their messaging into discussion points, ASPET is molding active players who can help shape science policy discussions. By engaging with elected officials who share the Society’s commitment to advancing public health, these conversations are indispensable in securing long-term allies.

The nature of science advocacy and policy has become entwined with politics. Therefore, ASPET has acknowledged the necessity of learning to navigate the complicated realm of government politics, to secure scientific progress for public health.

To learn more about ASPET’s work, listen to this podcast featuring Carter Alleman, Director of Government Affairs and Science Policy at ASPET. Alleman was a guest speaker on The Association 100 Podcast during the 2023 ASAE Annual Meeting.