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Short, yet very insightful, talk with researcher Hans Peter Peters on communicating science to and from the public. He discusses the misconceptions scientists have of the public’s ability to understand science.

Hans also discusses the strategies scientists take to communicate their findings.

What can scientists learn from the public? Science Podcast host Sarah Crespi speaks with social scientist Hans Peter Peters of the Ethics in Neurosciences Research Center in Julich, Germany. Peters gave a talk here today at the annual meeting of AAAS (which publishes ScienceNOW) about how scientists in different countries and age groups think about public engagement.

Most interesting (to me) was that there is an emerging awareness among scientists that the public is more open to discussing research from social science (aka the “soft sciences”) vs discussing the hard sciences. Conversely, media and journalists generally cover psychology, education, and economics much differently than they cover climatology, biology, chemistry etc. 

It’s Climate Science Communications Week at Climate Adaptation!  For the entire week of Feb. 18 - 23, I’ll cover how climate change is discussed by the media, scientists, researchers, academics, and politicians. If you have sources or ideas on communicating climate change, send to:

Will Obama cut NOAA’s budget?

Automatic budget cuts set to take effect March 1 could add to the woes of the federal government’s troubled weather satellite programs, jeopardizing future forecasts, a top official said Friday.

“It’s not going to be pretty,” outgoing National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration chief Jane Lubchenco said of the package of across-the-board spending cuts known as “sequestration.”

“The sequester has the potential to wreak havoc with so many different things, and satellites loom large within that,” she told reporters at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. “There’s just so much uncertainty. Nobody knows how long it might last, and it’s very difficult to plan for that.”

Via Climate Central

In coming years, we will have to ask ourselves if public policies should be based on the advice of experts who have carried out robust and rigorous analysis of the evidence, or if they should be guided by lobbyists who appear driven by narrow ideological dogma.
Bob Ward of the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change, in The Guardian’s, “Attacks paid for by big business are ‘driving science into a dark era