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Science, Care, and Politics in Environmental Controversies


On Thursday, Apr 4 @ 11am ET, join Cary Institute for a virtual scientific seminar by Dr. Anne Short Gianotti.

While the practice of wildlife management is often framed as a scientific decision-making process, decisions about management – especially lethal management – also entail significant questions of ethics and human values and transcend differing visions about the future.

Dr. Short Gianotti will examine the relationship between scientific decision-making and conflicting visions of care in a recent heated conflict about the use of hunting on public lands as a tool for deer management in a suburban town in Massachusetts. Residents and town officials active in the controversy hold a shared belief in the ideal of scientific, evidence-based decision-making yet differ in their perception of what constitutes sufficient data to justify lethal management. Though mostly unspoken, these residents hold different visions about what their suburban community should look like – visions rooted in multiple ideas about nature, the value of different forms of life, and safety.

Drawing on interviews, observations of town meetings, and local media coverage, Short Gianotti will consider how the insistence on scientific decision-making obscures and prevents deeper engagement with the competing visions about suburban futures.

Free and open to all. Registration required via Eventbrite.