Governments Can’t Be Science-blind

Policy makers rely upon scientific data to make huge decisions. But how do we ensure they're using the most reliable information?

 |  Transcript [PDF]

We live at a time when science is becoming a bigger part of our economy, our health system, and our individual lives. As a result, there are all of these forces that are twisting science. So how do we ensure that science policy created by our governments is based on the best possible, evidence-based information available?

Professor Timothy Caulfield, Canada Research Chair in Health, Law and Policy at the University of Alberta leads interdisciplinary research teams that explore the ethical, legal and health policy issues associated with a range of topics, including stem cell research, obesity and alternative medicine. This work yields scholarly data on key ethical and social issues which are used to provide evidence-based policy recommendations to shape Canadian legislation.

In addition, Caulfield is very interested in how science is presented and translated to the public, to policy makers and to health care professionals. With so much misinformation in the public domain, it is becoming more and more crucial that scientific information is being communicated to the public and to policy makers in a way that is trustworthy and in a way where it can have real impact.

Caulfield is the author of The Cure for Everything: Untangling Twisted Messages about Health, Fitness, and Happiness and Is Gwyneth Paltrow Wrong About Everything? When Celebrity Culture and Science Clash.

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Timothy Caulfield is a Canada Research Chair in Health Law and Policy and a Professor in the Faculty of Law and the School of Public Health at the University of Alberta. He has been the Research Director of the Health Law Institute at the University of Alberta since 1993. Over the past several years he has been involved in a variety of interdisciplinary research endeavours that have allowed him to publish over 300 articles and book chapters. He is a Fellow of the Trudeau Foundation and the Principal Investigator for a number of large interdisciplinary projects that explore the ethical, legal and health policy issues associated with a range of bioscience and public health issues. He has won numerous academic awards and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences.

Research2Reality is a groundbreaking initiative that shines a spotlight on world-class scientists engaged in innovative and leading edge research in Canada. Our video series is continually updated to celebrate the success of researchers who are establishing the new frontiers of science and to share the impact of their discoveries with the public.