Science for Progress

because science is fundamental in the 21st century

#4: Founding Science for Progress, and the representation of science in public.

Guest: Dr. Dennis Eckmeier
Guest Host: Hugo Bettencourt

“We face a dilemma in conveying the scientific process to the public, and even within academia: Real science doesn’t fit the elements of effective storytelling.”

Dennis had been vocal on topics surrounding academia, science and pseudoscience on social media for several years. Thus, he readily volunteered to co-organize the March for Science in Lisbon, in 2017. He wants to disseminate the understanding of science, humanities and academia by the public, but also systemic changes within academia.

In the first part of this episode he explains how he decided to found Science for Progress, and what our current goals are. The second part is about the image of scientists in the public. In Dennis’ opinion, story telling in scientific reporting, science journalism, but also in pop culture, creates a distorted image of scientists. The dilemma is that good story telling that consumers enjoy, does not fit the reality of scientific research.

background

Dennis is a neuroscientist from Germany. After receiving a college degree in biology, he did a PhD in neuroscience at Bielefeld University in Germany. He then worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, and in 2015 he moved to Portugal for a second postdoctoral fellowship at the Champalimaud Foundation in Lisbon. Throughout his career he conducted research on animal behavior and the underlying neural activity.