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It Takes a Village to Trust Science: Towards a (Thoroughly) Social Approach to Social Trust in Science

Contessa, Gabriele (2021) It Takes a Village to Trust Science: Towards a (Thoroughly) Social Approach to Social Trust in Science. [Preprint]

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Abstract

In this paper, I distinguish three general approaches to public trust in science, which I call the individual approach, the semi-social approach, and the social approach, and critically examine their proposed solutions to what I call the problem of harmful distrust. I argue that, despite their differences, the individual and the semi-social approaches see the solution to the problem of harmful distrust as consisting primarily in trying to persuade individual citizens to trust science and that both approaches face two general problems, which I call the problem of overidealizing science and the problem of overburdening citizens. I then argue that in order to avoid these problems we need to embrace a (thoroughly) social approach to public trust in science, which emphasizes the social dimensions of the reception, transmission, and uptake of scientific knowledge in society and the ways in which social forces influence both positively and negatively the trustworthiness of science.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Contessa, Gabriele0000-0002-3244-3522
Keywords: public trust in science
Subjects: General Issues > Science and Society
Depositing User: Dr. Gabriele Contessa
Date Deposited: 19 Oct 2021 17:44
Last Modified: 19 Oct 2021 17:44
Item ID: 19708
Subjects: General Issues > Science and Society
Date: 2021
URI: http://philsci-archive.pitt.edu/id/eprint/19708

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