Science journalists discuss communicating in a ‘post-truth’ world

A panel of journalists gathered in the Lory Student Center to discuss science journalism at a panel put on by the School of Global Environmental Sustainability.

The panel, titled “Communicating Science in a ‘Post-Truth World,” took place on Sept. 12. Four journalists joined a room full of academics, researchers, students and interested members of the community.

The panel consisted of Christopher Joyce, a science reporter at National Public Radio; Grace Hood, who works for Colorado Public Radio. Rachel Cernansky, an independent journalist and Jeff Burnside a Scripps Environmental Journalism Fellow.

Nancy Baron, the panel’s moderator began the discussion by asking, “How many of you really care about making this a better world?”

Everyone in the room stood up.

“This is something that scientists and journalists share: a passionate desire to make this world a better place,” Baron said after the attendees and the panelists sat back down.

According to Barren “post-truth” was Oxford Dictionary’s word of the year in 2016.

“The term has come to mean, ‘where objective facts and evidence can be lost in the noise generated by direct appeals to emotion and deeply held personal beliefs,’” Baron said.

According to Joyce, “post-truth” is not new.

“I’ve been covering science since the ’70s,” Joyce said. “I started in Washington, and I saw people on the left as much on the right ‘cherry-picking’ science. Everybody has an agenda.”

According to Hood, who has over 10 years of experience in journalism, her job became more difficult with the change in presidency.

“I would say (that) with the Trump Administration, one of the biggest challenges has been localizing stories,” Hood said. “I really found myself not trying to go for volume anymore but more (of) the contextual stories.

Read more at Collegian.com

Featured image credit: ISTOCKPHOTO/THINKSTOCK

Is it harder to communicate in a post-truth world?

Universities must rethink how they communicate in a post-truth world

Leave the bustle of Massachusetts Avenue and step into Harvard Yard, the historic heart of Harvard University, and you may notice an inscription above the gate. “Enter to grow in wisdom,” it reads. Stroll around the grounds and you cannot miss the famous Harvard coat of arms emblazoned with a single word: “Veritas”.

For centuries, our great research universities, epitomized by Harvard, have been the world’s bastions of wisdom and truth.

So it was appropriate that Times Higher Education held its inaugural World Reputation Forum at Harvard Square, Cambridge, earlier this month, bringing together senior leaders from Harvard and its neighbour the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, as well as colleagues from the University of Oxford and another institution dedicated to the pursuit of truth, The Wall Street Journal. The meeting was convened to discuss “the role of truth-seekers in a post-truth world”

Original article by Phil Baty featured on Timeshighereducation.com. Read more.

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