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Society Needs You

WIDESPREAD SCIENTIFIC ILLITERACY

Hard as it is to believe, a recent National Science Foundation survey of US adults showed that:

  • Only 48% know that the Earth orbits the sun yearly.
  • Only 11% can define a molecule.
  • 1 in 7 adults -- 25 million people -- cannot find the US on an unlabelled map.
  • 1/3 of US adults believe in astrology, and do not understand that astrology is not scientific.

PRESSING SCIENCE-BASED ISSUES

The whole premise of democracy is that it is safe to leave important questions to the court of public opinion -- but is it safe to leave them to the court of public ignorance?

ISAAC ASIMOV

But, at the same time, our society is currently confronting critical science-based decisions:

  • Of the 16 stated goals of US foreign policy, 13 involve science, technology or health considerations.
  • About 50% of the major bills currently before Congress contain a major scientific or technology component.

JOIN THE SCIENCE COMMUNICATION BANDWAGON

A scientifically bereft public -- facing critical medical, technological, defense and environmental choices -- is primed for bad decision-making. Fortunately though, increasing numbers of scientists are recognizing the importance of communicating with the public. In a recent survey, over 80% of scientists said that they are willing to learn how to communicate better. By improving your ability to convey science in clear, concise and compelling words that reach the widest possible audience, you can help spread the gospel of science.

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