Profiled In The Herald-Sun

By Sheril Kirshenbaum | August 2, 2009 3:43 pm

herald-sun.pngIt’s been wonderful to read commentary and reactions to Unscientific America around the web and in print and discuss the book with readers and friends. Still, the attention from my own town has meant the most. IndyWeek already ran their review, and today I was thrilled to see The Herald-Sun. I just love the research triangle. Here’s an excerpt:

“It’s easy to look now at the Obama administration and feel encouraged that there are beards back in the White House,” Kirshenbaum said recently, before heading off to Washington, D.C., to speak at an event hosted by the Center for American Progress. “But there’s still a rift between the world of science and the rest of society, and there’s a danger for those of us who care about science becoming complacent. Science, unfortunately, has become such a partisan, controversial issue, the situation is not going to change just because there’s a new administration in power.”

Whoever is in power, Kirshenbaum pointed out, scientists need to communicate better and science needs to take a more prominent role in education and public discourse.

Her claims are buttressed by the latest report from the Pew Research Center, which finds that 85 percent of scientists themselves see the public’s lack of scientific knowledge as a major problem for science.

I’m honored to be featured, and admittedly, the fact that they included the ‘charismatic sea cucumber‘ has me smiling ear to ear. The full article requires free registration and is available here.

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Unscientific America
MORE ABOUT: The Herald-Sun

Comments (2)

  1. Jonathan

    I noticed that this morning! What a great article SK! I can’t wait to show my daughter who wants to be a marine biologist ;>


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About Sheril Kirshenbaum

Sheril Kirshenbaum is a research scientist with the Webber Energy Group at the University of Texas at Austin's Center for International Energy and Environmental Policy where she works on projects to enhance public understanding of energy issues as they relate to food, oceans, and culture. She is involved in conservation initiatives across levels of government, working to improve communication between scientists, policymakers, and the public. Sheril is the author of The Science of Kissing, which explores one of humanity's fondest pastimes. She also co-authored Unscientific America: How Scientific Illiteracy Threatens Our Future with Chris Mooney, chosen by Library Journal as one of the Best Sci-Tech Books of 2009 and named by President Obama's science advisor John Holdren as his top recommended read. Sheril contributes to popular publications including Newsweek, The Washington Post, Discover Magazine, and The Nation, frequently covering topics that bridge science and society from climate change to genetically modified foods. Her writing is featured in the anthology The Best American Science Writing 2010. In 2006 Sheril served as a legislative Knauss science fellow on Capitol Hill with Senator Bill Nelson (D-FL) where she was involved in energy, climate, and ocean policy. She also has experience working on pop radio and her work has been published in Science, Fisheries Bulletin, Oecologia, and Issues in Science and Technology. In 2007, she helped to found Science Debate; an initiative encouraging candidates to debate science research and innovation issues on the campaign trail. Previously, Sheril was a research associate at Duke University's Nicholas School of the Environment and has served as a Fellow with the Center for Biodiversity and Conservation at the American Museum of Natural History and as a Howard Hughes Research Fellow. She has contributed reports to The Nature Conservancy and provided assistance on international protected area projects. Sheril serves as a science advisor to NPR's Science Friday and its nonprofit partner, Science Friday Initiative. She also serves on the program committee for the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). She speaks regularly around the country to audiences at universities, federal agencies, and museums and has been a guest on such programs as The Today Show and The Daily Rundown on MSNBC. Sheril is a graduate of Tufts University and holds two masters of science degrees in marine biology and marine policy from the University of Maine. She co-hosts The Intersection on Discover blogs with Chris Mooney and has contributed to DeSmogBlog, Talking Science, Wired Science and Seed. She was born in Suffern, New York and is also a musician. Sheril lives in Austin, Texas with her husband David Lowry. Interested in booking Sheril Kirshenbaum to speak at your next event? Contact Hachette Speakers Bureau 866.376.6591 For more information, visit her website or email Sheril at


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