NASA scientists will be able to speak freely about their work to the media and the public, under a newly revised policy announced 30 March by NASA Administrator Michael Griffin. Earlier in the year, the agency had been widely criticized after allegations were published that scientists had been prevented from speaking about controversial topics, such as climate change (see Eos 97(9) 2006).
The policy is intended to establish a ‘culture of openness,’ in which scientists may communicate the results and conclusions of their scientific research to the public without hindrance. However, NASA scientists will be required to distinguish personal views from those of the agency. The revised policy also outlines the responsibilities of the public affairs staff, who will be prohibited from altering or editing scientific information.