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VIRTUAL Science Denial: Why It Happens and What To Do About It
February 15 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Barbara K. Hofer, Ph.D., will discuss how do individuals decide whether to vaccinate their children against measles, accept human causes of climate change, or wear masks during a pandemic? Democracies depend on educated citizens who can make informed decisions for the benefit of their health and wellbeing, their communities, nations, and planet. Understanding key psychological explanations for science denial and resistance can help provide a means for improving scientific literacy and communication with others – critically important at a time when denial has become deadly. We will explore the role of social identity and polarization, cognitive biases, motivated reasoning, and what we can do to better understand our own minds and those of others to combat science denial, doubt, and resistance.
The 2021-22 AAUW (American Association of University Women) speakers series at the Ilsley Library focuses on “Polarization: What is it? How did we get here?” The current polarized climate of American culture and how it relates to challenges in Addison County and beyond will take into account social, political and sociological factors addressed through the varied lenses of five dynamic speakers.