Home » Media, News, Science » Science blogger Jeff Toney wants to know who’s the next great science communicator

Science blogger Jeff Toney wants to know who’s the next great science communicator

With co-author Houston Chronicle’s Eric Berger, he writes,

It’s been nearly two decades since Carl Sagan, the great science communicator, died.

Since that time public trust in science has eroded, and no one has emerged as Sagan’s clear successor. At the same time popular culture is littered with faux science ideas, from anti-vaccination fervor to documentaries on mermaids and mega-sharks.

What the world needs, then, is a great communicator of science who can connect with large audiences, liberal, moderate and conservative, to help explain what science is, and the wonders it reveals about nature and the nature of the universe.

In the poll, you get to choose between such figures as Alan Alda, Stephen Hawking, Jane Goodall, and Carl Zimmer.

There is a comments box.

Incidentally, is it true that public trust in science has eroded? Thoughts?

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10 Responses to Science blogger Jeff Toney wants to know who’s the next great science communicator

  1. Public trust in science has declined as scientism has united with left-wing politics to force unfounded policies on the population.

  2. Incidentally, is it true that public trust in science has eroded? Thoughts?

    Yes. #1 reason is the financially-motivated pharmaceutical and medical industry publishing falsified data about the efficacy of their expensive drugs and treatments and diagnostics. Even medical professionals (like doctors) are aware of this. They don’t like it….

    Somewhere in there is the creation/evolution controversy. If 40% believe in creation, the scientists denying diplomas, humiliating students in class, etc. can’t help. They might have the right to take issue with students that accept creation if evolutionism is as well confirmed as theories of gravity. Creationist students know the evolutionary paradigms are not as solid as other scientific disciplines.

    For example, the evolutionists don’t fare well even evaluating basic questions like chimp/human similarity.

    http://www.uncommondescent.com.....off-stage/

    How can we trust the science industry that tolerates such biased and false claims.

    But the pharma industry is a big culprit. I’m aware of too many cases of bribery from people I know personally. This is really bad!

    Even though I accept global warming (non-anthropogenic) the way the issue is being handled is also suspect. Unfortunately, we can’t say the oil industry is exactly unbiased either in their science!

  3. sal: Yes. #1 reason is the financially-motivated pharmaceutical and medical industry publishing falsified data about the efficacy of their expensive drugs and treatments and diagnostics. Even medical professionals (like doctors) are aware of this. They don’t like it….

    yet people flock to doctors and hospitals for all manner of ‘Big Pharma’ developed drugs and treatments. They trust it with their lives.

  4. I know Dr. Stephen Meyer is a great communicator. The trouble is is that the Darwinists don’t want to hear what he has to say because of the implications it may have for their lives!

    Here’s Stephen Meyer’s recent interview with hostile interviewer Thom Hartmann regarding his new book “Darwin’s Doubt”:

    Intelligent Design vs. Evolution – video
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K8LyULlM-qk

    A Fine Debut Evening for Darwin’s Doubt, the Book that Critics Still Refuse to Face Squarely
    David Klinghoffer August 12, 2013
    http://www.evolutionnews.org/2.....75381.html

  5. yet people flock to doctors and hospitals for all manner of ‘Big Pharma’ developed drugs and treatments. They trust it with their lives.

    The question was whether the trust was eroded, not gone.

    I go to doctors and hospitals. I have relatives who are doctors and nurses and friends and friends of friends in pharma. There lots of stories. There is distrust, they see what goes on first hand.

  6. Recent news out of China raises the question once again of whether any aspect of the pharmaceutical business can be trusted.

    An employee of British drug firm GlaxoSmithKli…
    Bribery allegations in China have gotten the full attention of Glaxo and other pharma companies. (IPhoto: AFP/Getty Images via @daylife)

    First, Chinese authorities announced they were investigating GlaxoSmithKline GSK -0.41% and other pharma companies for bribing doctors, hospitals and government officials to buy and prescribe their drugs. Glaxo is accused of using a Shanghai travel agency to funnel at least $489 million in bribes.

    Then the New York Times revealed last week the alarming news that an internal Glaxo audit found serious problems with the way research was conducted at the company’s Shanghai research and development center.

    China Probes U.K. Pharmaceutical Firm GlaxoSmithKline After Corruption Claims Aired Simon MontlakeSimon Montlake Forbes Staff

    Big Pharma’s Offshore Fraud Strategy Erika KeltonErika Kelton Contributor

    Last year Glaxo paid $3 billion to resolve civil and criminal allegations of, among other things, marketing widely used prescription drugs for unapproved treatments and using kickbacks to promote sales.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/er.....-to-fraud/

    Not exactly reassuring.

  7. I never saw anything from this Sagan guy and later noted he said stupid things about origin issues.,
    I think he made a tv show that was popular talking about space etc.
    Thats not science but a particular subject and most likely popular because it appeal to entertainment and not actual competent investigation into nature.
    Just fluff on the tube. He’s was the best communicator in science?!!!
    Explains the lack of interest in science by normal regular people.!
    Who has watched his show since?
    is science a methodology and so a verb or a noun??
    Science is not a noun you can put in a box.
    So much better coukld be done other then the Sagan’s of the world.
    There is science understanding and there is entertainment shows.

  8. “Trust” in Science, a false god, is being replaced by trust in the people who make it with their own hands.

    And that is how it should be.

    This sort of reminds me of liberal journalists bemoaning the “Golden Age” of journalism where journalists were always completely objective and reported only the facts. In practice, of course, all that really means is liberalism was completely dominant during that time and modern liberals realize how far they have fallen.

  9. I often wonder whether celebrities with exotic and maybe euphonious names, would have made it, with a names such as Bert Entwhistle or Fred Gubbins.

    Carl Sagan may have been a celeb around the time the late appalling ‘enfant terrible’ of the 20th century French novel, Francoise Sagan, had her best-seller, at the age of 18.

  10. For some reasons as to why the public’s trust in science has eroded, please read Trust Us, We’re Experts! How Industry Manipulates Science and Gambles with Your Future.

    The subtitle of the book says it all. Science may be objective and noble, but scientists surely are not. This elitist attitude can be traced back to Sir Francis Bacon who described the “innate depravity and malignant disposition of the common people” and who viewed science as a way to teach “the people to take upon them the yoke of laws and submit to authority, and forget their ungovernable attitudes.” (page 35).

    When scientists drop this elitist, “we’re better than you” attitude and stop allowing themselves to be manipulated by politicians and businessmen, then maybe the public will respond by trusting in their words again.

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