What Citizens Think They Know About Science and Why It Matters

Saturday, 15 February 2014
Regency A (Hyatt Regency Chicago)
Nick Allum , University of Essex, Essex , United Kingdom
Josh Pasek , University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI
In some areas of science, beliefs and attitudes among citizens are becoming increasingly polarised, even politicised, despite all sides having access to the same information. Why? In this paper we examine the distinct roles of information and misinformation in explaining public mistrust of early-childhood vaccination programmes. We show how personalised media environments can amplify or attenuate these effects and we make recommendations for appropriate communication strategies.