Enjoy the new Image of the Week! - Vijaysree Venkatraman – Conversation with a Field Biologist in India - David Ropeik – “The Scarecrow” – Lots of Heart, But It Could Use More Brain - Markus Pössel – “My brain is in town” and The Meta Post to the 6 out of 200 [...]
Why is that there can be such divergent views about basically the same body of evidence regarding organic and GM food? This debate/argument illustrates two things; the subjective and emotional nature of risk perception, and the fallacy of our faith in pure fact-based Cartesian reason as the be-all and end-all way of figuring out the [...]
Last May British medical authorities stripped Dr. Andrew Wakefield of his license to practice medicine. In case the name isn’t familiar, Wakefield was the lead author of the 1998 paper published in The Lancet (and later retracted) that set off worldwide fear of vaccines.
It is frightening to watch what’s going on with Japan’s nuclear plant at Fukushima. It is also worrying to watch the fear racing around the world as a result of those events, fear that in some cases is far in excess of what’s going on, or even the worst case scenarios of what might happen.
The choice between felt up or blown up seems like a no-brainer. So does the choice between the low-dose radiation exposure of a backscatter x-ray exam at the airport or getting on the plane and spending a couple hours high enough in a thinner atmosphere that you’ll get far more exposure to cosmic radiation.
The radiation crisis in Japan worsens for two reasons: one that we’ve heard about, one that we haven’t but which may in the end do far more harm.
Time for Society to Say Enough is Enough. The science community laments that people deny the evidence science produces.
A number of wonderful books decry the public’s seemingly irrational perceptions of risk. Seth Mnookin's The Panic Virus is the latest, and builds on Michael Specter's Denialism and Chris Mooney's Unscientific America .
A lot has been written about why people deny the findings of science. Why, ask the devotees of reason, do people’s views on vaccines or climate change not match the overwhelming bulk of the evidence?
May 31, 2011, was a bad day for a society already wary of all sorts of risks from modern technology, a day of celebration for those who champion more concern about those risks, and a day that teaches important lessons about the messy subjective guesswork that goes into trying to make intelligent choices about risk in the first place, for policy makers or for you and me.
Happy International Year of Chemistry. We hope things go well with your effort to increase public appreciation of chemistry and increase the interest of young people in chemistry and generate enthusiasm for the creative future of chemistry.Fat chance that’s going to get us to relax, though.
A court in Italy has convicted six scientists and one civil defense official of manslaughter in connection with their predictions about an earthquake in l’Aquila in 2009 that killed 309 people.
Another great day on the network. Enjoy. And have a great weekend. - Hannah Waters - The Evolution of Grief, Both Biological and Cultural, in the 21st Century - Kate Clancy - The Duggars Demonstrate Life History Trade-Offs Around Quality Versus Quantity of Offspring - Darren Naish - The noble tradition of military goats - Charles Q.
By 2002, Golden Rice was technically ready to go. Animal testing had found no health risks. Syngenta, which had figured out how to insert the Vitamin A-producing gene from carrots into rice, had handed all financial interests over to a non-profit organization, so there would be no resistance to the life-saving technology from GMO opponents [...]
More and more often, societies around the world are facing a conflict that puts us all at risk. People reject scientific evidence when it does not fit their worldviews and values, challenging governments to make evidence-based policies that do the most good for the most people over the long term, but also respond to short-term [...]
A recent decision by an appeals court in the Phillipines about genetically modified food was a striking victory for environmentalists who oppose many modern technologies that are ‘destroying nature’, and an ominous defeat for science and reason and the thoughtful search for solutions to some of humanity’s biggest problems.
As usual on Mondays, today we present the new Image of the Week! - Hilda Bastian - “Is anybody sane here?” said the psychiatrist to the journalists - David Ropeik - Could you look down from 24 miles up and jump?
- Scicurious - Sleeping Beauty: magic or hypocretin? - Becky Crew - Eunice aphroditois is rainbow, terrifying - Maria Konnikova - What Jane Austen can teach us about how the brain pays attention - Cassie Rodenberg - Anger, Crack and Duty: The Haze of Street Emotion - Kevin Zelnio - Sweden Journal: Tragedies at the Zoos - Bora Zivkovic - #2012SVP – what do Vertebrate Paleontologists talk about? - Christina Agapakis - Our Smell Universe - Robynne Boyd - Will Sea Level Rise Make the Final Debate? - David Ropeik - The l’Aquila Verdict.
The National Climate Assessment released Tuesday by the White House is a masterful piece of science and risk communication. Senior science writer Susan Joy Hassol, who turned massive contributions from hundreds of scientists into an accessible, persuasive report that will play an important role in getting the U.S.
For all the benefits modern society provides, not least of which are vast improvements in public health and longevity, our advanced post-industrial technological/information age also produces risks, far too many for you and me to keep track of.