Participation by Government Biologists in Professional Organizations

WHEREAS, recent legislation has put U.S. federal employees on notice that their participation in professional society activities may be in violation of the law; and

WHEREAS, there is a well-documented historical basis for the involvement of federally-employed biologists in professional scientific societies; and

WHEREAS, participation by government biologists in the full range of activities performed by professional societies provides opportunities for them to expand their knowledge of current techniques and theory, network with other researchers active in basic and applied research, and keep up with new developments in their areas of expertise, all of which are critical in performing their mandated responsibilities at the highest standards of excellence; and

WHEREAS, additional interactions between federal biologists and other members of the scientific community can only facilitate making basic and applied research more responsive to the needs of conservation professionals and society at large; and

WHEREAS, the ability of professional societies effectively to attain their goals of providing integrity and service to the scientific community is severely curtailed if its membership of federal employees cannot serve on committees, as officers, or board members;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that The American Society of Mammalogists, at their 75th Anniversary Meeting at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C., 18-23 June 1994, urges all federal agencies to ensure that their professional biologists are encouraged and enabled to participate in the full range of activities of professional scientific societies.