Science Coalition issues report to underscore the value of its research

The Science Coalition, a DC-based group of private and public research institutions, sought to show the social and economic benefits of its members' research.

Client
The Science Coalition (Washington)

PR agency
Quinn Gillespie & Associates (Washington)

Campaign
100 Companies Report

Duration
May 2010-ongoing

Budget
Approximately $100,000

The Science Coalition, a DC-based group of private and public research institutions, sought to show the social and economic benefits of its members' research.

"We kept getting questions from Congress about the value," says coalition president Deborah Altenburg. "Our mission is to advocate for an increase in federal funding for basic research."

STRATEGY

Scientific breakthroughs are often spun off into private companies. The coalition sought to highlight 100 nationwide companies that were created from federal research money. It unveiled the report in May, after about a year of research and collecting data from members.

TACTICS

The coalition targeted legislators, thought leaders, and the press. Bipartisan letters of support were sent with the report to each member of Congress, as well as heads of federal agencies with funding power. The coalition launched a Twitter initiative highlighting the report.

When the report was released, the House was considering the America Competes Reauthorization Act of 2010, legislation that looks at investments in science, technology, and more.

RESULTS

The legislators referenced the report several times as they debated the act. Ultimately the bill was approved, including federal funding increases for research.

"The report played right into that," says Sue Garman Kranias, director at Quinn Gillespie & Associates. Traffic to the coalition's website rose. The group even added three members.

Media outlets, including The Boston Globe, referenced the report. "Several schools also got local press," as did as some companies, adds Altenburg.

FUTURE

Altenburg calls the effort "evergreen" because she expects the report will continue to play a role in public policy, perhaps in the upcoming elections. "We've asked our members to continue to add to the report," she notes.

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