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ERIC Number: EJ779188
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2003
Pages: 5
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 0
ISSN: ISSN-0190-2946
Science Publishing in the Age of Bioterrorism
Atlas, Ronald
Academe, v89 n5 p14-18 Sep-Oct 2003
Following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and the subsequent anthrax bioterrorism mailings, the science community and others worried that technical articles might inadvertently aid those planning acts of terrorism. Some authors asked the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) for permission to withhold critical information from articles submitted to journals published by the ASM because of concern that data could be misappropriated or that scientific findings could be misused. As president of the ASM, the author, along with the association's publications board, feared that if they acceded to these requests, they could alter the fundamental tenets of science by eliminating reproducibility of scientific research and undermining the peer-review process for evaluating scientific merit. The ASM believes that open and collaborative research is key to protecting people from bioterrorism. Here, the author suggests that free flow of scientific and technical information may be the best defense against biological and chemical terrorism: the more scientists know about, for example, the anthrax pathogen, the better prepared they are to neutralize its threat. He also urges scientists and publishers to work together with the government to balance the need for security with the imperative to pursue vital scientific research and publish information that will provide true protection against the threat of bioterrorism.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A