The Power and Perils of the News Media in the Use of Scientific Evidence

Saturday, February 18, 2017: 3:00 PM-4:30 PM
Room 312 (Hynes Convention Center)
The significant role of the news media in the acquisition, interpretation, and use of scientific evidence by policymakers, community leaders, and other stakeholders is well established. The news media occupy a critical role translating scientific evidence to nonexpert audiences. Moreover, news media influence the likelihood that actors involved in the policymaking process will engage with or overlook certain types and forms of evidence. Therefore, it is important to recognize that news media also occupy crucial roles in the science and policy ecosystems. The empirical research discussed in this session describes the positive and negative roles of news media and explores how these roles evolve dynamically. This dynamic presents new challenges and promising opportunities for researchers to promote the use of scientific evidence in policymaking processes through news media. Speakers will give special attention to practical actions and strategies that can be employed by researchers to improve the positive reception and impact of emerging scientific studies.
Matthew Weber, Rutgers University
Matthew Weber, Rutgers University
Maggie Koerth-Baker, FiveThirtyEight
Itzhak Yanovitzky, Rutgers University
News Media as Research Brokers
Dietram A. Scheufele, University of Wisconsin, Madison
What Changing News Mean for the Practice of Science Communication