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Democracy and the Science Communication Environment

31 March 2014

During February this year we were lucky enough to play host to Professor Dan Kahan from Yale Law School. He was in Cardiff to deliver a lecture as part of the Distinguished Lecture Series, which brings eminent and influential guest speakers to Cardiff University and a wider audience to showcase their work.

Dan’s primary research interests include risk perception, science communication, and the application of decision science to law and policymaking.

During the lecture he presented the science communication problem and highlighted the failure of valid, compelling, and accessible scientific evidence to dispel any public conflict connected to that subject.

He went on to explore that understanding how this science communication environment works, devising procedures to prevent it from becoming contaminated with antagonistic meanings, and formulating effective interventions to detoxify it when protective strategies fail—those are the most critical functions science communication can perform in a democratic society.

More about Dan:

Dan Kahan is the Elizabeth K. Dollard Professor of Law and Professor of Psychology at Yale Law School. He is a member of the Cultural Cognition Project, an interdisciplinary team of scholars who use empirical methods to examine the impact of group values on perceptions of risk and science communication.

Related links

Watch the full lecture: