Engage the Media
Engaging the media is a great way to share scientific viewpoints and broadcast the importance of your advocacy efforts. Politics often begin at a local level, so publishing an editorial or op-ed in a local newspaper can be just as important as engaging a major publication — and is also more easily accomplished. Relating personal experience to the local community will help make any form of communication more relevant and publishable.
At the same time, don’t discount the power of blogs and other online communication. The majority of people nowadays get their news online — one can reach a wide audience through these venues.
Letters to the Editor and Op-Eds
A letter to the editor can respond to a previously published article, either by expounding on it or by writing a rebuttal. The letter should be no more than 200 words.
Op-ed pieces serve a similar function: to get an issue into the public view, to educate, and to raise awareness in the community. In both a letter to the editor and an op-ed, relate the argument to personal experience, include hard facts and figures, and close with the desired outcome.
How to Contribute to Blogs
Contact a favorite blog to see if it accepts submissions. Blogs can be a great way to connect with a community of like-minded individuals. Many blogs also have an active comment section, and participating in these discussions is another way to reach people.
Use Our Advocacy Best Practices
Whether you’re new to science advocacy or looking to expand your portfolio, our advocacy best practices will help you to refine your science communication and advocacy skills. Consult our new best practices toolkits for more tips to help engage the media.