Science Communication

Why we see hope for the future of science journalism

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Our decision-making and conduct is influenced by what we read, see or hear. (Shutterstock)

Eat blueberries for the antioxidants. Exercise daily at a moderate intensity for optimal heart health. Get the vaccine to prevent the disease.

The thinking error at the root of science denial

Could seeing things in black-and-white terms influence people’s views on scientific questions? Lightspring/Shutterstock.com

Currently, there are three important issues on which there is scientific consensus but controversy among laypeople: climate change, biological evolution and childhood vaccination. On all three issues, prominent members of the Trump administration, including the president, have lined up against the conclusions of research.

Teaching the public more science likely won’t boost support for funding, but sparking their curiosity might

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After 19 months without a director, the Trump administration recently tapped meteorologist Kelvin Droegemeier to lead the the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy. Perhaps surprisingly, given the administration’s previous efforts to slash funding for government-backed research, Droegemeier is a strong supporter of increased federal science funding.

Science communication is on the rise – and that's good for democracy

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Science communication puts research under the microscope. Shutterstock

Peter Weingart, Stellenbosch University; Lars Guenther, Stellenbosch University, and Marina Joubert, Stellenbosch University

Until a few years ago the term “science communication” would have been misunderstood by most people – including scientists – to mean any communication between scientists.

Now countries, universities and research institutions all over the world spend big chunks of their budgets on science communication aimed at external public audiences.