Issue Date: July 11, 2011
Science (Joint with Council)
The Committee on Science (ComSci) continues to make progress on its central initiative, the Alternative Energy Systems project. The project has three dimensions: science and technology, education, and policy. The scientific component is focused on hydrogen, solar, biofuels, and nuclear energy. Following a session on hydrogen in Boston, ComSci organized two successful forums in Anaheim on solar and nuclear energy. Regarding education, a special multidisciplinary symposium was held in Anaheim on community college approaches to renewable energy. Also, as part of the International Year of Chemistry celebration, ComSci is also organizing a forum at the IUPAC meeting in August in Puerto Rico.
ComSci has used symposia as just one of the tools to gather and communicate information about the alternative energy initiative and is now preparing to disseminate information through multiple platforms. For example, ComSci is developing a special segment on nuclear energy as part of an upcoming issue of the ACS Industrial & Engineering Chemistry Research journal.
A second major cross-cutting issue being developed by ComSci is the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) education to innovation and entrepreneurship initiative, which focuses on how to better prepare the next generation of scientists for discovery and entrepreneurship. A kickoff symposium was held in Anaheim on this issue. Regarding public policy, ComSci is currently reviewing ACS position statements on sustainability and scientific integrity and continues to work on developing energy policy recommendations.
In addition, following approval from the ACS Board, ComSci worked to submit a nomination on behalf of the society for the Presidential National Medal of Science. This medal is considered the nation’s highest honor for scientists and engineers. Finally, consistent with its mission, ComSci discussed several emerging issues at its meeting and has begun work on a strategic plan to provide a blueprint for future key directions.
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