Trust in science – (maybe not) hard to earn, but difficult to maintain (for some)

Session 5 – Trust in science
17 September 2021

In the age of “post-truth”, the COVID pandemic has painfully revealed that scientific ideals of “doubt” and “trust but verify” are difficult to translate into the safety and efficacy the public has grown accustomed to expect from science-based decisions (and scientists). The expectations of simple and predictable measures (that influence our daily lives) based on published research have been difficult to reconcile with the concept of a fluid scientific truth. While most communities have been instilled with a trust in science and the scientific method, such complexities and apparent contradictions in scientific findings may be disheartening.

This conceptual challenge might represent the opportunity to change the paradigm of communicating scientific findings as well as involving the public in science to maintain (or regain?) that relationship of trust.