Council for the Advancement of Science Writing

A Conversation about CASW's Past, Present and Future

A Message from the Executive Director

CREDIT: Ben PatruskyA half-century ago, when the science writing fraternity was still rather small, an especially foresighted handful of its members, sensing that they were on the eve of something big, joined together to establish CASW.  It was, in effect, a self-help group, devoted to developing programs aimed at making themselves and their colleagues better at what they did – at making them far more knowledgeable about and intimately familiar with the process and practices of science – so as to better engage and inform the public about the fruits of this majestic pursuit.

Also on their agenda, to be sure, was the creation of initiatives that would encourage more aspiring journalists and writers to join their ranks.

How prescient those founding few were.

Truth is, the astonishing explosiveness of science and the dazzling advances scored over the ensuing five decades was likely well beyond the imaginings of even those prophetic few.

CREDIT: 50 Years of Science and Science Writing: ScienceWriters adAs might be expected, this breathtaking epoch has brought with it a concomitant, quite stunning inflationary expansion of the science writing universe. Fair to say that today the public is for the most part very well served by a highly skilled cadre of science, medical and technology reporters. And that CASW has played a not insignificant role in fostering the growth and evolution of that now quite sizeable family.

And today, with science poised, as always, on the threshold of as yet undreamed realities (both good and ill), its impact on our quotidian lives is destined to be far more substantial than it already has been. The demand for accomplished narrators of the adventure of science will only continue to grow. Which means that our task is far from done.

CASW remains profoundly dedicated to its mission in the spirit of those who conceived it and first brought it to life. Thank you for letting us know what you think about CASW’s role to date and what else we might do to meet current and future challenges.

                                                                                                                                                    —Ben Patrusky