About Us

COPUS is the Coalition for Public Understanding of Science.

COPUS is a diverse trans-disciplinary network of individuals and organizations dedicated to public engagement with science. Members represent a wide range of stakeholders and constituencies who work together to articulate a shared vision and accelerate our collective impact. COPUS is a grassroots movement to achieve a national, cultural shift toward increased understanding of what science is, who scientists are, what they do, and why science matters. 

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What does COPUS do?

COPUS catalyzes connections — locally, regionally, nationally — to people, resources, and programs. This means you can’t always see where COPUS has been, or you may not know that COPUS has impacted you! Once you participate in the network, you will start to see how the connections broaden your perspectives, expand your network, and energize you through the voices of the many people like you who are passionate about science!

The objectives of COPUS are to:

  1. build a core group of passionate enthusiasts that advance the movement together while providing professional and personal support for one another
  2. promote innovation and experimentation in how we communicate science (hint: diversity is key!)
  3. share what COPUS learns and creates with the larger scientific community
  4. increase person to person interactions that build awareness and understanding of how science works, who scientists are, and why science matters
  5. expand COPUS members’ understanding of the public to ensure respect for the beliefs and experiences that influence their understanding of science

Who is behind this movement?

This is an inclusive effort! Anyone is welcome to participate, collaborate, share ideas, and encourage one another in their efforts. The only criterion is an agreement with the following characterization of science:
Science proposes natural explanations for how the world works and tests those explanations by making observations of the natural world. Scientific explanations must be predictive and hence, falsifiable or testable.

Science is an intellectual and social endeavor.

Guiding COPUS is a group of individuals invested in promoting good science, who meet to discuss strategies and opportunities that will serve the community as a whole.

For more info, see our membership and awards document.

Get Involved

Whether you are an individual or an organization, we welcome your participation!

What is the history of this effort?

COPUS, which originated in 2006, is constantly evolving to better address needs of our community. Read more about our history.