Rating

7

Qualities

  • Controversial
  • Scientific

Recommendation

Science writer Michael Specter addresses the growing trend of “science denial” – the irrational thinking and fear that cause people to reject hard evidence. Specter is by turns patient and exasperated as he describes how and why people spurn science, and at what cost. getAbstract recommends his passionate lecture – which will rankle some viewers – to innovators, researchers and armchair sociologists.

Summary

For humankind, life has never been better. People are living longer, and not just citizens of wealthy nations: A child born in New Delhi today “can expect to live as long as the richest man in the world did 100 years ago.” Science eradicated smallpox, which once claimed millions of lives. Polio and other deadly diseases have all but disappeared from affluent countries. The world has found a way to feed billions. Science is to thank for these feats, and more. And science can solve the issues that still trouble society – such as global hunger and the energy crisis. The world needs scientific progress more than ever, and widespread breakthroughs are at hand. Yet rather...

About the Speaker

Journalist Michael Specter writes for the New Yorker and other publications. His latest book, Denialism, expounds the risks of irrational thinking.


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