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Advancing Human Rights through Science

The science, engineering and health communities have long recognized human rights as an important area of focus. Given the immense needs of the human rights issues that face our global society, much more can be accomplished when all of these communities work together to create a powerful and influential voice in support of humanity.

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AAAS Science and Human Rights Coalition, Student Poster Competition in July 2015 | AAAS/Jonathan Drake

For over four decades, AAAS has been devoted to facilitating communications and partnerships on human rights within and across scientific communities, and between these and human rights communities. A key component of this effort is to engage the next generation of citizen scientists committed to advancing human rights for all. 

Inspired by the memory of Andrew M. Sessler—not only a leading scientist in his field, but a person deeply devoted to improving the world around him—AAAS launched the AAAS-Andrew M. Sessler Fund for Science, Education, and Human Rights in 2014 with the help of Dr. Sessler’s family, colleagues, and members of the AAAS community. The projects supported by the Fund aim to bridge the scientific, engineering and human rights communities and engage young and aspiring scientists and engineers in human rights.

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Campus Event Guide: A Toolkit for Students | AAAS

Building on the success of this effort, Dr. Jeffrey H. Toney, Provost and Vice President of Kean University, gave a generous gift to AAAS to create a Campus Event Toolkit last November. This toolkit for students serves as a resource for planning events on their campuses and in their communities on the intersections of human rights with science and technology.  It is the one-stop shop for planning an event that includes ideas for broad involvement, suggestions for facilitating questions around "conversation starter" videos, and critical next steps to keep participants engaged and motivated.

Students are the future of science, engineering, and technology. By educating young scientists and engineers about the crucial role science plays in human rights, we can work to promote a safer and better world for everyone. 


To learn more about the AAAS Science and Human Rights Coalition as well as other human rights intitiatives, please visit the Scientific Responsibility, Human Rights and Law Program homepage.

Download a copy of the Campus Event Toolkit here.