To meet the challenges of the social and environmental transition that our society is facing, scientific creativity and an open dialogue with the general public are more than ever essential. In this context, expanding the teaching and practice of science in French can contribute to accelerating innovation and the adoption of new behaviors.

While numerous studies have observed the Anglicization of science, the University of Montreal, HEC Montreal and Polytechnique Montreal will host the 90th ACFAS Congress from May 8 to 12. This great celebration of science in French coincides with the 100th anniversary of ACFAS and illustrates the dynamism of the large French-speaking scientific community, here in Quebec but also more broadly in Canada and around the world. This year, nearly 350 symposiums and 700 free communications will provide a real sounding board for research work carried out on cutting-edge topics as varied as brain diseases, space exploration and household finances in going through music professions and change management for a sustainable world.

Over the years, English has established itself as the common language of science. We can recognize that its use allows researchers from here and elsewhere to join the international scientific community and thus contribute to the advancement of knowledge and the resolution of the most pressing problems. However, while the common use of English is practical, it must also be said that the exclusive use of its use in research and scientific communication is not neutral. It influences the way of thinking of its users, especially non-English speakers, and surreptitiously imposes a way of approaching the world. However, the great richness of our universities is the presence and importance of diversities, whether cultural, gender, points of view: all are essential to the liveliness of science.

Today, faced with the complexity of the issues, the solutions no longer depend on a single individual or a single specialty, but on multidisciplinary teams that mutually enrich each other from their different perspectives.

This is why, in all world expertise, French-speaking science must continue to make its voice heard either at conferences such as that of ACFAS, or through scientific journals or portals in French, it seems essential to us to support.

Just as important as doing research in the language of your choice, disseminating science in French to reach the general public is also essential. Recall that French is the fifth language among the most spoken in the world and respectively fourth and third for presence on the internet and in the business world; there are more than 300 million French speakers in the world, including 8 million in Canada.

Providing access to science in French facilitates the sharing of knowledge between researchers and with society. This makes it possible to enrich the scientific culture of citizens and to fight against misinformation. Finally, at a time when consultation with local communities is essential, science popularization in French promotes a better understanding of the facts and informed exchanges that can lead to acceptability and, ultimately, to behavior change.

No actor alone can ensure the survival and vitality of science in French, whether in Quebec or around the world. Educational institutions, cultural organizations, media, institutional actors and governments: we need to act together. We each have our role to play in creating an ecosystem that will allow science in French to make its voice heard and thus contribute to the emergence of a more sustainable, harmonious and inclusive world.