2 June 2014

Where are the broader impacts?

Posted by Jessica Ball

recite-23642-1305071077-1cbtfseAfter my post from last week about sharing the broader impacts of geoscience research, I was really encouraged by all the retweeting and favoriting I saw on Twitter. However, retweeting does not a submission make. In fact, I’ve only received one real submission in the comments or the Tumblr blog, and that one needs some work to refocus it before I can post it.

One submission, folks. That’s pretty sad.

So what gives? Where is everyone? Is there something that’s making you hesitate to talk about the specific impacts of your work? Is there a way I can make this easier? Because the science policy world can really, really use your help, and it will only take a few minutes of your time. Seriously, you can cut and paste from a broader impacts statement in a grant application if that’s the easiest thing. Or you can get some great practice writing about your research in everyday terms, which is what a lot of us are already doing online. (I’m looking at you, geobloggers. I know everyone’s busy, but the funding situation for basic research is getting more and more precarious, and every little bit of support helps.)

Please tell me if there’s something I can do to help make this process less painful, and please take a couple of minutes to give the science policy crowd a hand here. I’ve even posted an example for you to follow based on my own work (and linking to one of the publications that resulted from it). It will only take a few minutes of your time, and it will provide us with invaluable ammunition to use on Capitol Hill when we’re fighting to keep basic research budgets from being reduced year after year.