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2001 Annual Science Report

University of Colorado, Boulder Reporting  |  JUL 2000 – JUN 2001

Philosophical and Societal Issues in Astrobiology

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Philosophical and societal issues in astrobiology (dm)

Our goal is to explore the connections between astrobiology and society and, more broadly, between the sciences and the science community and the broader society. The tremendous public interest in astrobiology is at a level far beyond the practical relevance of the topic, and suggests a public interest in the broader issues of exploration. In addition, we can use this interest as a way to get the public interested in science and science education, and to inform the public as to what science is (and, of equal importance, what science is not). As a way of furthering the exploration of these issues, We have (i) prepared and delivered many times a seminar on “What is astrobiology and why do we care?”, (ii) organized and participated in a special session panel discussion on “Societal connections of planetary exploration and the search for life elsewhere” at the 2001 Lunar and Planetary Science Conference as a way of raising these issues to the science community (about 250 scientists attended the session).

    Bruce Jakosky
    Unspecified Role