Take a look at all these people. What do you think do they all have in common? I’ll give you the answer at the end of this video, but first – We need to talk. Intuition, gut feeling – our decisions aren’t all just based on logic, facts, and numbers. Maybe unless you’re a scientist: Hey! Hey. What’s up? hmm. Hey are you alright? Hold on – [typing] “Am I alright?” [typing] “Psychological analysis” [typing] “Frame of mind: 86.2% stable” [typing] “heart rate: 72” [typing] “saliva sample” Graph: Am I alright? – YES (left bar) NO (right bar) Yes. It’s not always best to only rely on logic and reasoning. Even scientists have found that intuitive decisions sometimes lead to not only faster, but also better results. But – when you COMPLETELY ignore scientific facts – then that’s too much. “Strictly speaking, I’m not gluten-intolerant from a medical point of view – but I FEEL sooo much better when I avoid it.” “Of course I won’t have my kids vaccinated! I don’t want them to become autists! … … I mean there might not be scientific evidence for that – but I don’t care! I just care for my children!” “Well I’m not a scientist, but this whole climate change thing… I simply don’t believe in that.” It’s easier than it’s ever been to search for information these days. Actually, it’s become TOO easy maybe. You’ll find anything you’ll look for on the internet – whether it makes sense, or not. In the US, the Pew Research Center conducted a national poll in 2014, on the public opinions on scientific issues. According to this study, 30% of American did not believe in evolution, 50% did not believe that climate change was human-made, and again 30% thought that parents should decide themselves if their kids should be vaccinated or not. This is why in 2014, there was the biggest outbreak in measles in 20 years. The thing is, people believe what they want to believe. We tend to ignore information that are contrary to our beliefs. There’s even a scientific term for that called ‘confirmation bias’. Vaccine deniers or conspiracists – people who hold on tightly to misbeliefs are driven by one gut feeling in particular: fear and mistrust Fear and mistrust are also the roots of racism and xenophobia – but science?? Can you distrust facts? A study from Princeton, that was published in 2014, has some very interesting data on this topic. The scientists studied how different professions are viewd by the general public, with regard to 2 features: 1. Competence and 2. Warmth which is trustworthiness While scientists were regarded as highly competent, they scored only mediocre on the warmth scale. This translates to: “Scientists are pretty smart, I’m sure, but would I TRUST them? … I don’t know” One thing is particularly interesting about this study, namely how climate scientists are viewed by the general public. Although climate scientists are obviously confronted with a lot of distrust, they were still ranked higher then “pure” scientists. I think that’s simply due to the fact that climate scientists are so frequently mentioned in the media these days, people are familiar with them, they can at least picture them somehow. So climate scientists are probably the most familiar scientists, which makes them the most trustworthy. So please, dear scientists, go out there and make yourselves known! Talk to people! – in a way they’ll understand you It’s because of our dispassion, our stern arguments with numbers and facts, that misses out on one thing: Our gut feelings. Humanity, warmth. If we want to not only reach peoples’ minds but also their hearts, if we want to erase fear and distrust, we probably need to speak another language. So what do these people all have in common? They’re all young scientists. Did you guess right? Would you trust these people? What kind of people are scientists? What’s your image of them? Well, now you know what we look like. Now we just need to talk to each other.