Updated: Aug 22, 2020
Have you found yourself yearning for facts over "fake news"? It can be so much easier to click on a flashy headline and get your science news from biased or ill-informed sources, rather than taking the time to search for peer-reviewed articles that are straightforward enough to understand. Science communication has definitely come a long way in recent years, but the population at large is still not accessing the evidence-based journalism that our society sorely needs. The current global coronavirus pandemic has only amplified this issue. For example, we heard recommendations to use hydroxychloroquine to prevent COVID-19, without having evidence to back up the safety and efficacy of the drug in this context. The back-and-forth between politicians and scientists has led to further distrust of public health officials and research scientists. Not only will this slow scientific progress, but it is dangerous for the health of our citizens.
For this reason, among others, I want to start a blog to tackle interdisciplinary topics - mental health, climate change, diseases, science policy, and more - using evidence from the scientific community. To paraphrase what my husband Spencer said when I told him about the idea: It's not necessarily novel, but it is important because it will add to the volume of evidence-based science communication that's already out there. So no, my idea isn't groundbreaking, but my goal through CollabSci is to provide even more resources and ways for people to learn about important issues with the help of science-based reasoning. My hope is for those with a non-STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) background to be able to read the types of articles that I and others publish and have a greater insight on the issue at hand, and how science works in general. Hopefully it's a little bit entertaining, too!