December 7, 2017

Legal Education for Scientists at Fall Meeting

Posted by Jenna Zink

Editor’s Note: The following guest blog is written by Rebecca Fowler, Communications Director of the Climate Science Legal Defense Fund.


The Climate Science Legal Defense Fund (CSLDF) has several exciting events and opportunities at the 2017 AGU Fall Meeting.

The Climate Science Legal Defense Fund (CSLDF) and AGU have partnered for six years on the Legal Education for Scientists Program, a series of initiatives designed to reach the broad geoscience community and help researchers understand their legal rights and responsibilities.


Get Advice from an Attorney

At this year’s Fall Meeting, we’re providing the opportunity for scientists from all disciplines to have a free meeting with a CSLDF attorney and seek advice or ask legal questions about their work. Appointments are available in 30-minute slots from 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., Monday, December 11 through Thursday, December 14, in Room 237 of the convention center. Email [email protected] to make an appointment. We encourage you to book in advance, but walk-ins are also welcome.


Know Your Rights: Tools for Advocacy

CSLDF supports science advocacy and wants to prevent researchers participating in it from encountering problems or legal issues. To help scientists understand how to safely stand up for science, we’re hosting a workshop, Legal Issues for Scientists Interested in Activism, on Tuesday, December 12 from 10:00-11:00 a.m. in room 240-241 of the convention center.


The workshop will feature a panel discussion and Q&A with attorneys from CSLDF and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). They’ll discuss practical legal issues that scientists interested in activism should know, including how to separate personal activism from professional responsibilities, free speech rights and restrictions, public protest guidelines, open records laws, anti-lobbying restrictions for federally-funded scientists, and how scientists should respond if they become political targets.


Other Opportunities at Fall Meeting

On the morning of Wednesday, December 13, CSLDF staff will give talks in session PA32A: Preserving Scientific Integrity and Science-Based Governance in the New Political Era. You can also stop by Booth 1554 in the Exhibit Hall to meet CSLDF staff, ask about our work, and pick up free our educational materials and swag.


Find out More About CSLSF

CSLDF protects the scientific endeavor by providing free legal aid and educational resources to scientists who are threatened, harassed, or attacked for doing their job. Visit to learn more and find out how you can help us protect academic freedom and scientific integrity.