Lincoln Lecture: Citizens, science and citizen science
Science touches everyone, whether they like it or not, but knowledge of it and its implications is patchy amongst politicians, journalists and the general public alike. This can be immensely damaging, as important decisions need to be made on many fronts: the energy transition, climate change, measles vaccination or the use of CRISPR technologies. Scientists need to work harder to explain what it is they get up to and what they know, and be more sensitive to the social context in which individuals make their own decisions. On the other hand, there is also a responsibility on others, particularly those with influence, to engage and listen to the evidence. Some people fear science because of its perceived difficulties, and it is also thought to lack creativity; both these views, embedded in our culture, serve only as a barrier to dialogue. I will explore some of the underlying reasons for this and the myths that have grown up, plus how and why scientists get up to surprising, exciting and creative things and how the public themselves can get involved in some citizen science projects.
#sociology #interdisciplinary #PublicLecture #lecture #public #lincoln #university #UniversityOfLincoln #EastMidlands #EastMidlandsBranch #IOPBranchEvents