Science Court is a project designed to combat polarization in American society and strengthen democracy. It is run as an interdisciplinary course in the University of Minnesota Honors Program involving students from across the university. The students select a controversial issue and spend an entire semester studying it in depth to determine the facts (based on sound scientific research) and then argue it in a mock trial in front of a jury of citizens with a mix of views and backgrounds. The public is engaged through compelling audio, video and online content generated by the students about the preparations, trial and verdict. The trial is open to the public.
2021 Mandatory Service
The Science Court case statement for 2021 is:
To fight polarization and recreate a common American identity, a mandatory national service should be adopted.
The exact wording may change somewhat as the case is refined, but the focus will remain on strategies for reducing polarization in American society. The pro side will argue for a strategy centered on civil and military national service. The con team will argue for a different approach, still to be determined, for reducing polarization on a grand scale. The jury will decide.
We welcome your input as we prepare our case. If you have any questions on this issue that you would like us to investigate or any suggestions for us, please fill in our public input form.