Council for the Advancement of Science Writing

CASW Articles

November 01, 2018

by Greer Russell | 

Scientists and clinicians have worked hard to understand autism in recent years, says neuroscientist Kevin Pelphrey. But most of their hard-won knowledge turns out to be limited in scope, leaving much unknown about autism in one population: girls.

October 24, 2018

by Jackie Rocheleau | 

October 19, 2018

by Carol Lawrence | 

Painting the picture of Brazil’s vulnerable Amazon region continues to be complex, contentious and even downright dangerous for journalists and others.

July 28, 2017

After almost seven decades at The San Francisco Chronicle, former CASW President David Perlman will finally close his reporter's notebook on August 4, retiring at the age of 98 after an accomplished career that made him a legend among science journalists. CASW colleagues took the occasion to recall some of their professional encounters over the years with the Dean of Science Journalism, who served as CASW's vice president 1973-76 and president 1976-80.

November 08, 2016

Jacob Roberts was inspired by Mark Riedl's talk on creativity and artificial intelligence at the 2016 edition of the New Horizons in Science briefing to create a lighthearted simulation of a freelancer's experience of a science writers' conference. Just for fun, we share Jacob's Science Writing Conference Simulator.

Sketch by Rob Frederick, @TheConjectural

November 08, 2016

by Jacob Roberts | 

November 08, 2016

by Nancy Averett | 

When LeeAnne Walters first brought samples of the brown water coming out of her tap to a public meeting in Flint, Mich., the city’s emergency manager, Jerry Ambrose, called her a liar.

“I went up to him with bottles from my tap, and I said ‘this is my water,’ and he said, ‘No it’s not. I don’t believe it’s your water,’” Walters recalls.

November 03, 2016

by Amy Mayer | 

LeeAnne Walters had three words of advice when a science writer asked how to tell stories that will capture the audience’s attention: “Find a mom.”

Walters had struggled to get the attention of anyone in the media as she confronted Michigan state and federal officials with evidence of lead contamination in her family’s tap water over the summer of 2015. Eventually, though, she became a leading voice in the story of widespread water contamination in the city of Flint.

October 26, 2015

by Grace Lindsay | 

When it comes to black holes, a change in perspective can make all the difference. Standing outside one of these massive objects in the universe, for instance, there's only darkness—the black hole's gravity is so strong that not even light escapes. But just inside the black hole, there may lie a blazing wall of fire, waiting to destroy whatever enters.

October 25, 2015

by Anahita Zare | 

"Brain control" brings to mind an image of evil scientists hidden away in a dark lab preparing an army of zombies to do their bidding. In reality, Edward Boyden, associate professor of biological engineering and brain and cognitive sciences and head of the Synthetic Neurobiology Group at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, hopes that controlling a mouse brain can reveal its biological circuitry.