Your Guide to the 2012 Science Debates

Free science resources for a decision-making public

Science influences many aspects of our lives, and a sound understanding of today’s science issues is crucial for shaping good national policies. We want you to be well-informed about the science behind many issues that have a significant impact on our future.

Several leading U.S. science and engineering organizations came up with the most important science policy questions facing the United States in 2012. In all, 14 questions were posed to the Presidential candidates, and their answers were posted side-by-side at How would you respond to these same questions?

Click on one of the reading lists below. There, you’ll find the Science Debate question, a link to the candidates’ answers, and a hand-picked set of National Academies reports on the topic. All our resources are available to download for free and to purchase in print from

Innovation and the Economy

Climate Change

Research and the Future

Pandemics and Biosecurity




Fresh Water

The Internet

Ocean Health

Science in Public Policy


Critical Natural Resources

Vaccinations and Public Health

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