Do American's Trust Scientists?
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For millions of Americans, the pandemic has led to the death of a loved one, disruption to the economy, and the loss of a sense of control and normalcy.
It has also brought greater attention to the role of science in society.
“We haven’t seen anything like this in over 100 years.”Dr. Anthony Fauci, Director National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases
Vaccine development, therapeutics, and epidemiology are new topics of conversation in the public square. In the months leading up to the pandemic, the Pew Research Center measured the level of trust in science and scientists. Studies have revealed strong support for government investment in science from around the globe.
Yet when Americans were asked whether they trust scientists to do what is right for the public, only 38% answered “a lot.”
“A scientific endeavor that’s not trusted by the public cannot adequately contribute to society.”Sudip Parikh, CEO American Association for the Advancement of Science
“Strong communication is an essential part of what it means to be a scientist.”Laura Lindenfield, Executive Director Alan Alda Center for Communicating Science
“Science is not a static thing; it’s a moving target of history.”Ira Flatow, Journalist and Host Science Friday
Effective COVID-19 vaccines and other measures are already addressing the pandemic’s effects on public health, enhancing economic recovery for communities.
And this research has accelerated because of increased support, collaboration, and attention. But once the pandemic is behind us, can we keep it up?
“For all of our successes, the pace is too slow for too many patients.”Esther Krofah, Executive Director fasterCures, Milken Institute
30 YEARS: The estimated time it takes to move a new idea in biomedical science from the lab bench to the bedside.
Although we don’t know what the future holds, one thing is certain: science will continue to inform policy solutions.
6 out of 10 Americans say scientists should take an active role in policy debates about scientific issues.