Obama & Cameron call for “Open Science”. Do they really mean it?

Filed under Global Warming, Politics
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Anthony Watts reports that Obama’s visit to the UK produced a joint statement, released in a White house memo.  The whole thing makes interesting reading, and can be seen here:

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/05/27/interesting-memo-from-the-white-house-on-science-and-climate-collaboration-with-the-uk/

The memo states that “Recognizing the great potential for productive cooperation in these domains, the Prime Minister and President reaffirmed during the State visit their mutual commitment to strong collaboration in science and higher education”.

It notes specific examples of existing cooperation in those fields.  At the end, there is this statement:  “They emphasized the importance of data sharing and open science data policies that support climate research and modelling”.

The trouble is, their own warmist poster boys on both sides of the Atlantic strongly disagree.  The British Royal Society honcho, Paul Nurse, must be very angry with them.  He claims that requests for data amount to intimidation, and even claims that people request information from scientists prior to publication of their findings.  He doesn’t say how people know what to ask for before the scientist publishes – I guess the malicious data requesters must be psychic:

http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/05/26/nursing-their-wounds-with-salt/

It is possible that data sharing and open science data policies are the last thing he wants to see, and his outburst is simply an attack on those who want data transparency, i.e. those who want scientists to follow the principles of science.

On the US side of the Atlantic, a court battle over the FOI request for the release of Michael Mann’s work-related emails has raged for some time.  The University of Virginia first claimed they had deleted the emails.  After investigation proved that the emails had not been deleted, they then argued that they should be kept confidential in the name of Academic Freedom.  Finally, a court has ordered that the emails must be released:

http://washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/2011/05/freedom-information-trumps-academic-freedom

The leaders of the UK and the US both create policies reflecting the views of the AGW-promoting scientists.  The same scientists who refuse to share their working data and working correspondence.  The same “scientists” who do not want their findings scientifically tested.  If the leaders really believe their call for data sharing and open science, they should be taking steps to ensure that scientists comply with the call.

If they fail to do so, Obama and Cameron will succeed only in inviting scepticism about their real intentions.

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