The AusSMC believes scientists can make a big impact on the way issues are covered in the media.
By building bridges that help the scientific community to engage with journalists, the AusSMC supports scientists to take more initiative and play a leading role in informing public debate.
The AusSMC is a not-for-profit organisation that represents no particular faction in science. Its agenda is simply to utilise evidence-based science to shed light on issues and present a broad spectrum of scientific opinion.
The AusSMC is:
- Independent – With a broad range of sponsors and by capping individual contributions to 10% of total operating costs, the Australian Science Media Centre is able to provide an independent service and a spectrum of opinion from the scientific community without fear or favour. See full statement of independence below.
- Media driven – While most issues we cover are driven by the level of media interest, the AusSMC also plays a role in providing journalists with heads-up on emerging issues.
- Proactive – The AusSMC is constantly 'horizon scanning' looking for situations where science can help clarify an issue.
- Collaborative – When scientists from different institutions are involved with the same media story, the AusSMC can provide an independent platform, enabling coordinated distribution of the message to the media.
The AusSMC is not:
- Responsible for increasing the profile of specific concepts or areas of science (eg: physics etc) in the media;
- Set up to take general enquiries directly from the public or non-media institutions.
Statement of independence
The AusSMC is an independent, not-for-profit organisation actively disseminating evidence-based science to the public through the media on a broad range of topics (read our policy on selection of experts below). The AusSMC is governed by a Board of Management. All board members acknowledge that Centre staff are free to disseminate the best available scientific information, regardless of any commercial, political or personal interests, including those of any sponsors or board members. Full editorial control of all material disseminated by the SMC rests with the staff of the SMC, with guidance sought from the Centre’s Science and Media Advisory Panel (SMAP) when required.