Table of Contents

Social Science and Environmental Policy

Summer 2012


National education standards; An incomplete view of adolescence; California: Radical carbon cuts needed?; Better STEM for all; Praise for SEMATECH; Lessons from nuclear disasters; Internet freedom: Not a foreign-policy issue

From the Hill

R&D funding receives some good news amid major uncertainty; The EPA issues new air pollution rule; key Republicans object; Senate panel considers national standards for forensic evidence; Cybersecurity bills advance in House, Senate; Federal science and technology in brief

Perspective: Getting the Most Out of Electric Vehicle Subsidies

Jeremy J. Michalek, Mikhail Chester, Constantine Samaras

Perspective: U.S. Competitiveness: The Mexican Connection

Christopher Wilson

Decisionmaking, Transitions, and Resilient Futures

Richard H. Moss, Meredith A. Lane

The newly established National Research Council Board on Environmental Change and Society explores insights and research frontiers for understanding coupled human-environment systems.

What Makes U.S. Energy Consumers Tick?

Kelly Sims Gallagher, John C. Randell

Harnessing the social sciences to answer that question can help lead the nation to an alternative—more efficient—energy future.

Decision Support for Developing Energy Strategies

Joseph Arvai, Robin Gregory, Douglas Bessette, Victoria Campbell-Arvai

Valuing the Environment for Decisionmaking

Stephen Polasky, Seth Binder

In dealing with complex environmental issues, determining the value of multiple environmental attributes is problematic, but not doing so is even more so.

Communicating Uncertainty: Fulfilling the Duty to Inform

Baruch Fischhoff

Scientists are often hesitant to share their uncertainty with decisionmakers who need to know it. With an understanding of the reasons for their reluctance, decisionmakers can create the conditions needed to facilitate better communication.

Data Deluge and the Human Microbiome Project

Mark Sagoff

Because the cost of genetic sequencing has declined so much, researchers are accumulating oceans of data for no clear purpose. The assumption is that something in the data will stimulate important questions, but this is not an effective way to conduct scientific research.

Eight Questions for Drug Policy Research

Mark A. R. Kleiman, Jonathan P. Caulkins, Angela Hawken, Beau Kilmer

The current research agenda has only limited capacity to shrink the damage caused by drug abuse. Some promising alternative approaches could lead to improved results.

Real Numbers: The Small Business Innovation Research Program

Albert N. Link, John T. Scott

Book Review: Mother of invention

Edward Tenner

The Idea Factory: Bell Labs and the Great Age of American Innovation
, by 
Jon Gertner.