FENS and SfN Announce 2013 Advocacy Grant Program Recipients
Seven European national societies have each received grants of up to €5,000 to advance advocacy and education efforts in their home countries through the 2013 Advocacy Grants Program co-funded by the Federation of European Neuroscience Societies (FENS) and SfN. The Dutch Neurofederation, Italian Society of Neuroscience, Lithuanian Neuroscience Association, Neuroscience Ireland, Polish Neuroscience Society, Serbian Neuroscience Society, and Slovenian Neuroscience Association will use their funding in 2013 for activities such as promoting public awareness about the brain and nervous system and engaging with key policymakers.
Since the program started in 2011, it has awarded grants to more than 15 FENS member societies, helping neuroscientists around Europe get involved in advocacy and public education efforts at the national and local levels. Societies were selected through a competitive application process that evaluated detailed plans to raise the profile of neuroscience through outreach and advocacy.
“FENS is delighted to expand the reach of the Advocacy Grants Program in 2013,” said Marian Joels, FENS president. “These important projects will build on the achievements of 2012 grantees, who undertook a diverse range of innovative programs that are raising greater support for and awareness of neuroscience research.”
“SfN encourages advocacy engagement by members around the globe. We know national and regional neuroscience societies are uniquely positioned to lead advocacy programs that reflect each country’s funding and political systems,” said Anne Young, chair of the SfN Government and Public Affairs Committee. “SfN is pleased to continue its valued partnership with FENS, joining forces to help enhance brain advocacy.”
2012 Advocacy grant achievements include:
- The Spanish Society of Neuroscience promoted public awareness and education about the brain and nervous system and worked with legislators, culminating in the Spanish government declaring 2012 The Year of Neuroscience.
- The Croatian Society for Neuroscience helped establish the Croatian Brain Council and held a meeting with members from the national and European Brain Council to promote strategic partnerships.
- The French Neuroscience Society created an online database of resources for its members to use in advocating for neuroscience during meetings with policymakers. The Society hopes to expand the website to include information for the public about neuroscience and brain diseases.
- The British Neuroscience Association held meetings with scientists and legislators to discuss policies on neurodegenerative diseases and social challenges.
- The Portuguese Society for Neuroscience organized meetings with citizens to promote brain research in collaboration with Ciência Viva Agency, held a session for senior citizens dedicated to the brain and memory, and developed a Facebook page called Brain Research Friends.
- The Hungarian Neuroscience Society started a campaign to target specific policymakers in Debrecen with the goal of building relationships at the local, regional, and national levels. The Society has produced presentation materials for meetings with policymakers.
To learn more about current and past FENS-SfN Advocacy Grants recipients, visit the FENS website.