Why Is Science Important? By Karina Monaco
In addition to exploring and communicating as a family, it is important to invest in your child’s willingness to learn. There are many programs available that are fun and interactive, helping them build a solid foundation in science. Science is everywhere, which is why a visit to the park or an afternoon in the yard provide so many opportunities to learn.
The denial of global warming and the growing hostility against vaccinations are sad examples of such movements. Both have the power of killing thousands or even millions of people in the longer term. And the average worldwide life expectancy at birth is now 72, compared to 53 in 1960.
He characterized normal science as the process of observation and “puzzle solving” which takes place within a paradigm, whereas revolutionary science occurs when one paradigm overtakes another in a paradigm shift. The choice between paradigms involves setting two or more “portraits” against the world and deciding which likeness is most promising. A paradigm shift occurs when a significant number of observational anomalies arise in the old paradigm and a new paradigm makes sense of them. That is, the choice of a new paradigm is based on observations, even though those observations are made against the background of the old paradigm. For Kuhn, acceptance or rejection of a paradigm is a social process as much as a logical process.
Working on science policy activities in graduate school felt like a natural extension of this, so I’ve been looking for ways to do this in government or in community groups. It is critical for scientists to inform the public about important issues, complex problems and new discoveries. This information can influence how the public votes at the next election, what is discussed at the town hall meeting or community group, what causes they choose to support and where they volunteer. Using targeted communication, scientists can also influence government decisions related to regulation, science policy and funding, which can in turn have an important impact on scientific progress. It is not a stretch to say that the entire fate of humanity could rest on scientists successfully communicating and collaborating to help solve the problems that are facing mankind today. In Northern Europe, the new technology of the printing press was widely used to publish many arguments, including some that disagreed widely with contemporary ideas of nature.
The impact of science is felt at every level of society, from the creation of entire industries like pharmaceuticals, manufacturing, and technology, to enabling even those most mundane of daily activities like boiling a kettle or sending a text. Maybe the biggest paradox here is that however anti-science the message may be, the channel that is used to promote the view would not exist without a century of applied science. On the opposite scale of this movement is the homogeneous, fact-based education model that is prevalent in the Nordic countries.