Ask the Experts: Trust in Science
Thursday, March 25, 2021
11 am EDT
In recent years, many groups— from climate-change deniers to anti-vaxxers— have publicly challenged research widely accepted in the scientific community. And although science has always had its critics, trust has reached new lows in an era of misinformation fueled by social media and politicians who doubt the advice of experts. The phenomenon has real-world consequences: in just one current—and pressing—example, doubts surrounding medical research on the Covid-19 virus and the safety of the new vaccines threaten public health efforts to fight the pandemic. How can scientists promote greater public trust in their research? And how can publishers of this research support these efforts? In this Ask the Experts event, attendees will hear from panelists on the latest in efforts to restore trust in science.
Anita de Waard, VP Research Collaborations, Elsevier
Anita de Waard is VP of Research Collaborations at Elsevier. Her work focuses on working with academic and industry partners on projects pertaining to progressing modes and frameworks for scholarly communication. Since 1997, she has worked on bridging the gap between science publishing and computational and information technologies, collaborating with groups in Europe and the US. Anita has a degree in low-temperature physics from Leiden University, and worked in Moscow before joining Elsevier as a physics publisher in 1988.
Tracey Brown OBE, Sense about Science
Tracey Brown has been the director of Sense about Science since 2002. Under her leadership, the charity has turned the case for sound science and evidence into popular campaigns to urge scientific thinking among the public and the people who answer to them. It has launched important initiatives to expand and protect honest discussions of evidence, including AllTrials, a global campaign for the reporting of all clinical trial outcomes; and the Ask for Evidence campaign, which engages the public in requesting evidence for claims. It has challenged opinions and changed the behaviour of governments, media and corporations in the use of scientific evidence.
Tracey leads Sense about Science’s work on the transparency of evidence used by governments in policy, to ensure that the public has access to the same evidence and reasoning as decision makers. In June 2017 she was made an OBE, for services to science. A regular public speaker and discussion chair, Tracey writes frequently about scientific evidence, policy and the public in national media. She has also written and edited popular public guides to scientific research and led research on reliability of evidence, including the 2009 Peer Review Survey, the largest global survey of authors, reviewers and editors. In 2020 she was made an honorary Professor at UCL in the Department of Science, Technology and Engineering in Public Policy.
Richard Sever, PhD, Assistant Director, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press
Richard Sever is Assistant Director of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Press at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York and Co-Founder of the preprint servers bioRxiv and medRxiv. He also serves as Executive Editor for the Cold Spring Harbor Perspectives and Cold Spring Harbor Protocols journals and launched the precision medicine journal Cold Spring Harbor Molecular Case Studies.
After receiving a degree in Biochemistry from Oxford University, Richard obtained his PhD at the MRC Laboratory of Molecular Biology in Cambridge, UK. He then moved into editorial work, first as an editor at Current Opinion in Cell Biology and later Trends in Biochemical Sciences. He subsequently served as Executive Editor of Journal of Cell Science, before moving to Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in 2008.
Eefke Smit, Director of Standards and Technology at the International Association of STM Publishers
Eefke Smit is the Director of Standards and Technology of the International Association of STM Publishers and coordinates the activities for STM members in the areas of technology developments and standards, such as the annual STM Tech Trends reports, initiatives on research data, text and data mining, access and authentication, and digital preservation. She coordinates the work of the STM Future Lab Group, and is the staff support for the Standards and Technology Executive Committee (STEC) as well as the STM RA21 Task Force. She organizes STM Innovations seminars in Europe and the US and series of webinars for STM members. She Represents STM in a variety of industry-wide standards organizations, projects and working groups and also represents publishers on several advisory panels.
Eefke has been active in academic publishing for more than 30 years (physics, mathematics, computer science) and in electronic product development (Scopus, ScienceDirect), holds a masters’ degree in public administration and started her working life as a writer and journalist on research and technology (in NRC Handelsblad).
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