Mistrust of our governments, our institutions, and each other is leading us to a crisis of reason.
In Brazil, forest fires rage across the Amazon, burning vast swathes of the rainforest, presided over by a leader who believes climate change is a “Marxist plot.” In America, health-related misinformation has become an epidemic of its own. And in Europe, country after country is losing their hard-earned measles-free status as the anti-vax movement becomes more potent by the day.
Our new edition, War on Science, part of our ongoing coverage of Disinformation, will tackle these issues deeply, with human-centered stories at the forefront. We’ll look at how these movements are created and allowed to thrive, examine how they affect policy, health and climate, and meet the people who are fighting back.
Access to all the knowledge we have ever gathered is at our fingertips. But that also means that once-fringe movements are coming to the center, and disinformation, pseudoscience, quackery and denialism are banding together to wage a war on what they call the “orthodoxy” of expertise, nullifying the mountains of evidence against their position.
As opposition to this war on science has mobilized, universities are devising strategies to cope with threats of research defunding. Dollars are pouring into organizations advocating for science in the public interest. And ordinary citizens are prepared to counter the assault on science.
“Journalists have a wealth of stories at their fingertips once they reject the notion that truth is subjective and start asking for evidence and digging into details,” wrote science advocate Shawn Lawrence Otto. “They especially have a wealth of stories at their fingertips when they start exploring how science is being intentionally misrepresented by vested interests.”
Coda’s new War on Science edition intends to bring subjectivity and evidence to investigate those vested interests who seek to misrepresent science.