The COVID-19 pandemic has put science in the spotlight like never before, illustrating the critical role that science has to play in public policy decisions. More than ever, scientists need to be able to understand and participate in the many different processes that contribute to public policy. But to do so effectively, they need access to skills-based training and opportunities to put those skills into practice.
Introducing the Science to Policy Accelerator
While science communication training is becoming more widespread in Canada, there is a limited offering of programs designed to help scientists develop the skills that will help them enhance the impact of their research in various policy contexts.
That’s why, today, we’re very excited to share that in winter 2022, Evidence for Democracy will be launching the Science to Policy Accelerator (S2PA) program!
Our pilot program will welcome up to 25 early-career researchers from across Canada (i.e. individuals with a PhD in any discipline, or a Master’s degree with at least three years of research experience). This demographic will benefit from specialized skills training, as their expertise and ongoing research positions them as key knowledge brokers and emerging leaders at the science-policy interface.
S2PA participants will first master foundational knowledge in science policy and communication. Then, they will apply these concepts to specific forms of policy engagement, such as writing briefing notes and participating in pre-budget consultations. The program will be delivered through four weekly sessions in February and March 2022. Currently, sessions are scheduled to take place on Friday afternoons (ET) for 4-4.5 hours. We will confirm session timings following program acceptances.
Why should early career researchers take part in S2PA? In the face of pressing issues like climate change, COVID-19, the opioid crisis, and societal inequality, it is increasingly important that policy-makers can access and use scientific evidence. Researchers can play an important role in this by honing their skills and expanding their engagement with public policy.
In particular, we encourage individuals who are Black, Indigenous, disabled and/or a Person of Colour to apply.
Applications to our pilot cohort are now closed.
This program is offered at no cost to participants. If you have questions about the S2PA program, please get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org.