Why Trust Science?
A review of

Why Trust Science?

The University Center for Human Values Series

Defense of the Scientific Method

by David Meyer

Harvard science expert Naomi Oreskes discusses disbelief in science and how scientists can counteract it.

Naomi Oreskes, PhD, is a professor of the history of science and an affiliated professor of Earth and planetary sciences at Harvard University. She is the co-author of Merchants of Doubt. Oreskes’s timely “Tanner Lectures on Human Values” provide a background on the philosophy of science and its history since the mid-19th century. Her solution to disunity is to acknowledge that diverse societies create science. This illuminating account, which features responses from her peers juxtaposed against Oreskes’s thoughtful replies, shows why society needs science more than ever.

The depth and precision of Oreskes’s definition of science and her presentation of its history may surprise laypeople, who likely have little concept of how controversial her approach may be. Politics and fact-deniers have laid siege to science, Oreskes argues; she offers knowledge – and candor from scientists – as science’s best defense.

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