Young scientists in a laboratory

Creating Science-Based Strategies for Gene Editing Communications

Generating Next Generation Crops Solutions

Program Contact

Sarah Goldberg

Dr. Sheila Ochugboju

Alliance for Science

Year Awarded   2021

FFAR award amount   $189,794

Total award amount   $760,271

Location   Ithaca, NY

Matching Funders   Cornell Alliance for Science

What is the problem this research is tackling?

A recent study found that most Americans rate their knowledge about gene editing and genetic modification in food as very low to below average. However, another study found that despite this lack of knowledge, most believe the technology will bring benefits. There is a thirst for knowledge about gene editing communications, but researchers often struggle to identify how to communicate messages about that research that will resonate best with their audiences.

Why this research is important

This grant is creating science-based communications toolkits that will help students, young professionals and researchers to continue their engagement with a wide variety of audiences. Additionally, this grant creates specific advancement opportunities to increase engagement with underrepresented populations.

FFAR envisions a world where everyone has access to affordable, nutritious food grown on thriving farms. To achieve this vision, we need to employ all available tools and technologies, from organics to biotechnology. Among our many projects developing gene editing tools, technologies and strategies, several of our scientific workforce development programs, like the FFAR Fellows program and the Vet Fellows, are spearheading this critical research to revolutionize our global food supply. The Alliance for Science grant is helping us bridge communications gaps to better inform the public about the benefits of this research. Sally Rockey, Ph.D.
Executive Director Emeritus

Gene Editing Communications Resources

Perceptions about Gene Editing in Agriculture

Gene Editing FAQ (English version)

Gene Editing FAQ (Spanish version)

Speaking Science Digital Workbook

The Future Faces of Gene Editing in Agriculture Webinar

FFAR Fellow Maci Mueller: Pioneering revolutionary changes in livestock breeding through gene editing

Details About this Research

The Alliance for Science is developing and implementing a communications plan to elevate the work of FFAR beneficiaries, like the Realizing Increased Photosynthetic Efficiency (RIPE) project, which is optimizing crop productivity by enhancing photosynthetic processes.

The Alliance for Science is also conducting several training courses, including a session to familiarize US journalists with gene editing research currently under way and introduce them to leading scientists in the field. Specifically, FFAR and the Alliance are collaborating on a training session at Tuskegee University, an 1890 Land-Grant Institution, to engage young people in science communication and inspire them to pursue careers in plant biotechnology.

How This Research Contributes to Our Mission

The Alliance for Science project supports pioneering science by ensuring gene editing communicators can effectively deliver their message and increase public understanding about the promising benefits associated with gene editing technologies. Additionally, this grant supports scientific workforce development by offering targeted communications training for graduate students pursuing biotechnology research.

Matching Funders

Thank you to the Alliance for Science for providing matching funds for this grant.

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