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Fight the fear with the facts!

  • Orešković and Porsdam Mann draw a distinction between ‘fast’ and ‘slow’ science. Whereas the latter involves rigorous and laborious adherence to the scientific method, the former represents the reality that much scientific work faces time pressures which at times force shortcuts. The distinction can be seen to operate in contemporary research into the coronavirus pandemic: whereas the development of vaccines and treatments usually requires years of meticulous laboratory work and several more years of clinical testing, the many millions suffering from the disease need a treatment now. However, by taking too many safeguards off the treatment discovery and testing pipelines, or by refusing to act in accordance with scientific advice, governments risk sacrificing the public’s trust not only in the government’s scientific bona fides but in the scientific process itself. This is a heavy price to pay, argue Orešković and Porsdam Mann, and point to evidence indicating that the success of Germany and Japan in combating COVID-19 can be traced to public trust in science and government, as well as scientifically-informed and respectful national leadership.

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Document Type:Part of a Book
Author:Ranga Yogeshwar
Parent Title (English):Porsdam, Porsdam Mann (Eds.): The Right to Science. Then and Now
Number of pages:16
First Page:195
Last Page:210
Publisher:Cambridge University Press
Date of first publication:2021/11/25
Keyword:Changes in communication; fake news and alternative facts; novel publishing models in science; social media; the need for open and critical dialogue
Departments, institutes and facilities:Zentrum für Ethik und Verantwortung (ZEV)
Dewey Decimal Classification (DDC):0 Informatik, Informationswissenschaft, allgemeine Werke / 00 Informatik, Wissen, Systeme / 000 Informationswissenschaft, allgemeine Werke
3 Sozialwissenschaften / 30 Sozialwissenschaften, Soziologie / 303 Gesellschaftliche Prozesse
Entry in this database:2021/12/03