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August 11, 2014

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Heather Thorstensen
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Annual Meeting Update: Debates Hosted by ISGP

Annual Meeting logoThe Institute on Science for Global Policy will hold debates November 8 during Sigma Xi's Annual Meeting in Glendale, Arizona. ISGP has pioneered a specific debate format to improve communication of scientifically credible ideas and recommendations to policy makers.

Prior to the Annual Meeting, two subject matter experts will prepare concise policy position papers espousing diverse viewpoints concerning challenging priorities facing society. These papers are the centerpieces for two debates. Prior to the debates, these papers will be distributed to those in attendance.

Each author is given 5 minutes at the start of each debate to summarize his/her views while the remaining 70 minutes are open to questions from participants. The presenter and a moderator will be in the middle of a hollow rectangle, surrounded by local and potentially national policy makers, students, and subject matter experts who will engage the authors with questions and comments. Members of the audience will have opportunities to participate through written questions.

ISGP has agreed with Sigma Xi to also organize, cosponsor, and convene two-day conferences next spring at Ursinus College in Pennsylvania and at Eckerd College in Florida. Additionally, ISGP will hold a workshop in summer of 2015 featuring ISGP-style debates and caucuses at the Sigma Xi Center in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, for chapters who wish to explore this type of debate as an activity they can hold in their local areas.

This article was originally published in the September-October issue of Sigma Xi Today.

More About Sigma Xi: Sigma Xi, The Scientific Research Society is the international honor society of science and engineering. One of the oldest and largest scientific organizations in the world, Sigma Xi has a distinguished history of service to science and society for more than a century. Scientists and engineers, whose research spans the disciplines of science and technology, comprise the membership of the Society. Sigma Xi chapters can be found at colleges and universities, government laboratories, and industry research centers around the world. More than 200 Noble Prize winners have been members. The Society is based in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. www.sigmaxi.org. On Twitter: @SigmaXiSociety.


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