David Tredennick MP has apparently “spent 20 years studying astrology and healthcare and is convinced it could work.” This is nothing new for David, he has in the past championed homeopathy and suggested that surgeons should avoid certain operations at the time of the full moon.
It’s funny isn’t it? – No it bloody well isn’t.
The voters of Bosworth made David an MP (please voters – sort that out next year) and, worse, his fellow MPs put him on the commons health committee and the science and technology committee.
This kind of thing is the very reason I write this blog, and the reason I started the Geek Manifesto Pledge. But there is something much more practical that I have done and I would urge you to do the same.
A group of academics including Chris Chambers of Cardiff university, who did a Geek Manifesto pledge for Welsh Assembly Members, are creating what they call an Evidence Information Service (EIS) to give evidence based advice to politicians both on demand, and as proactive briefing notes. And they need your help to make it work.
They are looking for “local champions” to interview their local MP to find out what would make them welcome and use the service. I have interviewed mine, and I was pleased by his enthusiasm for the project. he seemed convinced it would be both useful and used. They have 100 volunteers and 35 interviews “in the bag” so far, which is good, but they need more. If this service is well designed it could make a real contribution to improving political policy making in the future, and these interviews are important to get the service right from the start.
The commons has broken for the summer recess and this means a lot of MPs will be spending a lot of time back in their constituencies which means they are much more likely to have time for an interview.
Please help – this is a chance to make a real, practical, difference. It probably won’t stop Tredennick being a total clown, but it will help all the others who are not, and it will mean he has no excuse.
Use the links below to find out how you can make a real difference.
- Original Guardian launch article
- The Evidence Information Service Q & A
- How to become a local champion
- The Geek Manifesto and the Pledge(s)
- LSE article about EIS
UPDATE APRIL 2017
Things have moved on, Chris and the team are no longer looking for local champions, they are now “seeking your confidential views as an academic on your attitude to and experiences of evidence-based policymaking, the usefulness of the EIS and your potential contribution.” from “Academic/Researcher/Professional” s
You can contribute here https://t.co/39dw69GaXJ