The New Voices in Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (“New Voices”) project was established by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine to provide diverse perspectives on emerging scientific challenges, to enhance the effective communication of science and technology with affected communities, and to provide evidence-based feedback to local and national leaders for improved policy responses to national and global challenges.
In the midst of the global COVID-19 crisis, the initial 2018-2020 cohort of New Voices was holding our semi-annual meeting at Biosphere 2 in Oracle, Arizona. And just as our conversations began, it was becoming clear that the epidemic was beginning to have worldwide impact. Therefore, in response to this public health emergency, we shifted our focus to the role of the scientific community in mounting an effective response. The answer we came to collectively was that scientists and health professionals must be prepared to step up at this moment and help America, and the world, respond to this crisis.