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The steering committee has been overwhelmed by messages of support from the geoscience community for our initiative in setting up the Independent Committee on Geoethics. We are now calling for papers and comment/analysis articles for inclusion on this website. If you would like to submit an article, please use the contact form
and we will contact you with details on how to format and send your documents to us.
The subject encompasses a wide area, ranging from detailed comment on specific research to general articles concerning the science-policy interface, and the application of geosciences’ output in society, academic and political governance, industry, and the media.
The committee welcomes input from everyone regardless of background or location, and looks forward to moderating lively discussions on the geoethical issues raised by members and contributors.
Founded, October 17, 2015, in Prague
at the International Conference on Geoethics
The principles of ethics – to know what is right and what is wrong – are simple. They are deeply rooted in our cultural heritage and education and personal integrity. To live up to those principles is another thing: here we often fail badly. The ethical principles that refer to nature and natural sciences are covered by the term “Geoethics”.
We realize that ethical principles are often violated in Science as well as in Society and Politics. Increasingly, in connection with marketing and lobbying for large projects, ethical principles have become set aside. Backbiting, ‘book-burning’, career blighting, obstruction in publication and personal attacks have no place in science, where physical laws and observational facts must always be foremost. There are no goals that justify unfair means of fighting “dissidents”.
Therefore, there is an urgent need for an Independent Committee on Geoethics to promote ethical principles in the Earth and planetary sciences and their correct reflection in social and political life.
Aims and Methods:
We will formulate geoethical recommendations and work for their wider acceptance and application in science.
We will speak up and “use the sword of truth” when scientific facts, observational evidence and physical laws are being set aside, and when geoethical principles are violated.
Keep to science – always being ready for new findings and concepts
Always anchor your ideas in observational facts – from nature and firm experiments
Beware of advocacy and lobbying – by or on behalf of special interest groups
Never let your opinion be influenced – by money, promotion, or easy publication
Some relevant quotations:
Virtue is knowledge. What I don’t know, I don’t pretend I know – Socrates (470-399 BC)
Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you – Jesus Christ (~0–34 AD)
You have to read the book written by Mother Nature – Leonardo da Vinci (1452-1519)
False facts are highly injurious to the progress of science – Charles Darwin (1809-1882)