The power of Roundtables and forums at the National Academies stems from the ability of the members to choose topics of common interest and then facilitate discussions of these issues among members and experts in a neutral setting that builds trust and promotes problem-solving. Over many years, National Academies roundtables and forums on many significant issues have attracted the finest minds in academia and the public and private sectors.

The Roundtable structure generates immediate benefits as members and audience apply the insights and lessons learned from convened workshops within their home institutions or research activities, and share new approaches with colleagues in other institutions. Workshop attendees from other organizations also participate in “seeding” concepts and ideas among their membership and the public.