Science communication

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Scientists themselves may be the key to finding the right balance. Scales image via

Accurate science or accessible science in the media – why not both?

The public loses when their only choices are inaccessible, impenetrable journal articles or overhyped click-bait about science. Scientists themselves need to step up and help bridge the divide.
Printer George Howe shows the first edition of the Sydney Gazette to Governor Philip Gidley King, in a feature window at the Mitchell Library. Reproduced with permission of the Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales, Digital Order Number: a6509002

The science issues this election are as old as the Australian media

What science issues did Australia's first newspaper - edited by a convict - discuss in its letter pages? The same ones we talk about today: the environment, education and health.
There’s a lot of incentive to hype scientific findings but in the end nobody wins. Overselling findings can undermine the authority of scientists as well as the credibility of the sources and ultimately deceive or even endanger the public. Shutterstock

The danger of overselling science

Sometimes scientists, the media and the general public inadvertently conspire to oversell science, and that is bad for us all.
If someone is spouting pseudo-science, should scientists risk legitimising them by getting into a debate with them? Shutterstock

Should scientists engage with pseudo-science or anti-science?

Some scientists refuse to debate or appear with those they consider to be unscientific. But is this the best approach to combat anti-science narratives?
This is what happens when science writing gets too turgid. Shutterstock

How not to write about science

Science can be fascinating and exciting. But much science writing is dull and obscure. Here are some of the tricks scientists often use to suck the joy out of science.
Um, you figured out what by doing which? Woman image via

They won a Nobel for what? Why good science communication counts

Nobel Prize-winning science is almost by definition arcane and complex. While these esoteric fields have their moment in the spotlight, does it matter if the rest of us understand?
Electricity is only one of the marvels brought to us by science. But even that’s not enough to convince some of its value. Michael Wyszomierski/Flickr

What has science ever done for us? The Knowledge Wars, reviewed

Nobel Laureate Peter Doherty's new book explores why so many people today selectively reject science, and in the process gives a behind the scenes look at how science really works.

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