First and foremost: None of the SciMoms have been paid or receive funding for time spent working on this project.
We do this because we feel that it is important. We also care for one another, and love spending time on this project as friends. We use donations (primarily our friends and family) and sales of t-shirts and other merchandise to pay our guest writers.
In the interest of transparency, the SciMoms disclose their current and previous sources of personal income below.
I am an Assistant Professor at Michigan State University, a public land grant university. My salary, my research, the salaries of my lab staff and the stipends for my students are funded by a combination of federal grants, private foundation grants and start-up funds provided by MSU. None of this pays for my science communication work, which I do in my spare time.
My writing has been published on many platforms and websites, included some that are funded and sponsored by agricultural companies. I have been paid for writing only two articles: a “Let It Go” Passover parody called “Get The Dough” and an article at SEEN magazine. In 2018, I appeared on the kids’ show, Sprout House; NBC Universal covered my travel expenses to and from NYC and I received an honorarium. In December 2018, I was invited to speak on a panel about risk communication on social media at the Society of Risk Analysis Annual Meeting. The Center for Food Integrity sponsored this panel and covered my conference registration fees and travel expenses. Their funding information is available here.
I worked for Freshëns Yogurt and Regal Cinemas when I was in high school, but have otherwise been a public servant my entire life to date. I am not paid for my writing or editing activities. I have in the past accepted paid travel or small honoraria for speaking engagements.
I am a journalist and science writer whose work has been published in Vox, Popular Mechanics, Civil Eats, Undark, Forbes, The Washington Post, Slate, and numerous other outlets. I am compensated for that work, and have also been paid an honorarium or speaking fee for some speaking engagements. I turn down speaking fees from organizations that I cover as a journalist.
I am a writer covering health, food, science, and parenting, and I contribute to a variety of outlets, including Forbes and SELF, and have had work also appear in Slate, Gawker, and more. The outlets for which I write compensate me for this work. In addition, I do regular public appearances, speaking, and presentations for various organizations, including private companies, trade organizations, and universities. I receive honoraria or speaking fees for most of these appearances.
I also play a role and receive a salary at my mom’s small family business, Genome International, which is involved in software and IT consulting and genomics data analysis. At this time, the company does not contract with agricultural biotechnology companies. My communication work always reflects the broad weight of evidence and my own opinions.
As a private sector scientist, I have received a salary and compensation from my employers for my day job. I have worked for several companies doing similar work for all these employers: developing DNA sequencing instruments and assays many of which focused on targeted human DNA sequencing. My past employers have sold reagents and/or instruments which are commonly used in laboratories in many different fields including: polymerases, NGS sequencers, microarrays, human DNA sequencing services, oligonucleotides, CRISPR, among others. You can learn more about my work history on my LinkedIn profile.
I do not receive any funding for the science communication work that I do. The articles I write and blogs that I publish are my own opinions and do not reflect the ideas or opinions of my employers. I have published on many different platforms and websites, including some that are funded and sponsored by agricultural companies, but I have never received any money for the articles I’ve published.
The total list of items I have received from industry-affiliated companies as a result of my science communication efforts are:
- I received hotel accommodation for one night at a conference, paid for by BIO (Biotechnology Innovation Organization)
- I was reimbursed for travel expenses and accommodations for one night to a conference where I was invited to speak, paid for by AEIC.