communicating science: values vs. data

I was recently reading a PNAS paper entitled “Bringing values and deliberation to science communication” by Thomas Dietz from Michigan State [thanks to Ashley for sending this along]. The basic premise of the article is that robust and useful communication of science is required for that information to be used correctly in making personal decisions as well as formation of policy. I could write a summary of the article, but that has already been done in other places. You should go and read the article yourself rather than relying on summaries that don’t really permit you to gather the entire weight of Dietz’ arguments. In lieu of a true synopsis, I thought it might be interesting to simply provide some key quotes from the article, since it is perhaps one of the most quotable pieces from the peer-reviewed literature  I have read in quite some time. The quotes are presented below without commentary, and in the order in which they appear in the article. Some may seem mind-numbingly obvious outside the context of the article, while others may seem incomprehensible. Whatever the case, my hope is that they will pique your interest enough to go and read the article yourself. I should note that there are many threads in the article that hearken to the content of Daniel Kahneman’s Thinking, Fast and Slow, which is fantastic and perhaps should be required reading of all scientists, journalists, and policy makers alike.

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whither higher “ed”?

I am a graduate of Rutgers University (B.A., RC ’92). Like many Rutgers alumni, I am beset by a range of emotions in light of the recent events surrounding the basketball program. To be blunt, President Barchi and AD Pernetti should follow Mike Rice out the door. They have no business leading young men and women and clearly do not treat RU as an institution of higher education. Continue reading “whither higher “ed”?”