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Picq, Pascal

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Les Echos - France | 07/01/2013

Science must get more involved in politics

Pascal Picq, a paleoanthropologist at the Collège de France in Paris, argues in the liberal business paper Les Echos that scientists should become more active in political debates: "2012 was a good year for science: the Higgs boson was discovered, confirming the standard model of particle physics. Scientists made breakthrough discoveries about the Pikaia graciliens, which at five hundred million years is [among] the world's oldest fossils. ... Without forgetting, of course, the awarding of the Nobel Prize in Physics to Serge Haroche, a professor at the Collège de France. So as long as the scientists keep their minds on the origins of matter, life or the human species, everything's hunky-dory. But as soon as they start meddling with the future of the planet and humanity, there's a huge hue and cry. It's up to decision makers to find the right balance between scientific progress on the one hand and overblown criticisms of such progress on the other."

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