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Topic: Journalism and communication practice

How does science misinformation affect Americans from underrepresented communities?

Boston University

"New Boston University–led research has found historically excluded and marginalized Americans may be more vulnerable to inaccurate notions about science due to 'structural and institutional power dynamics.'" The Brink, Boston University's online publication for sharing research news, spoke to paper author Michelle Amazeen about the study's findings.

10 ways researchers can help journalists avoid errors when reporting on academic studies

"This tip sheet outlines some of the many ways researchers can help the news media cover research accurately, starting with the journalists who interview them about their own work." It offers tips to researchers for approaching interviews with journalists, differences in language between academia and media, and giving feedback to journalists.
Resource Database / Guide

Tip sheet: Science journalism and communication in the misinformation era

CASW Connector

On April 16, CASW Connector hosted a Chat discussing science journalism and communication in the misinformation era. The panelists talked about key concepts – and misconceptions – that journalists and communicators encounter in combating misinformation, shared insights from research on how people process information, and answered questions from the audience. This event was facilitated by Connector managing editor Kate Travis, and the panelists were: Kai Kupferschmidt, contributing correspondent at Science and Knight Science Journalism Fellow, and Briony Swire-Thompson, director of the Psychology of Misinformation Lab and assistant professor of political science, psychology, and network science at Northeastern University.

Memory and belief regression after the correction of misinformation

Harvard University; Shorenstein Center for Media, Politics and Public Policy

"After misinformation has been corrected individuals initially update their belief extremely well. However, this change is rarely sustained over time, with belief returning towards pre-correction levels. In this edition of the Misinformation Speaker Series, Briony Swire-Thompson discusses a study aimed to examine the mechanisms of belief regression, and whether corrected misinformation suffers more from belief regression than affirmed facts."

Misinformation, trust, and personality in journalism: A conversation with Kai Kupferschmidt

Knight Science Journalism Program at MIT

Science Magazine contributing writer Kai Kupferschmidt has "witnessed how social media — and the personalities who populate it — can impact the public’s ability to distinguish facts from fiction. Now, as a 2023-24 Knight Science Journalism Fellow, Kupferschmidt is digging deeper into those issues." In this interview, he discusses his plans for his MIT fellowship and his perspectives on misinformation and related issues.

Reducing health misinformation in science: A call to arms

"The public often turns to science for accurate health information, which, in an ideal world, would be error free. However, limitations of scientific institutions and scientific processes can sometimes amplify misinformation and disinformation... We characterize this article as a “call to arms,” given the urgent need for the scientific information ecosystem to improve. Improvements are necessary to maintain the public’s trust in science, foster robust discourse, and encourage a well-educated citizenry."

How to use ocean data for journalism

Pulitzer Center

"Ocean data is diverse and can range from information about vessels, cargo, currents, and biodiversity, to scientific databases about salinity and pollution levels. Utilizing ocean data in reporting enhances the accuracy, accountability, and predictive capabilities regarding ocean-related issues. Access to databases helps journalists, scientists, policymakers, and the general public understand the complexities of ocean ecosystems and the impact of human activities on marine environments." The panelists in this webinar from the Pulitzer Center are: Alexandra Talty, Pulitzer Center Ocean Reporting Network Fellow; Alexander More, climate and health scientist at Harvard University; Georgios Hatzimanolis, head of global communications and branding at Kpler/MarineTraffic; and Jean-Charles Gordon: ship tracking director at Kpler/MarineTraffic.

Misinformation: 3 tips to help journalists avoid being part of the problem

"In his new book, How America Lost Its Mind, Harvard Kennedy School professor Thomas Patterson charts the dramatic rise in misinformation over the past three decades. On everything from climate change to vaccines, millions of Americans hold views that are wildly at odds with the facts and are confounding efforts to deal with the nation’s policy problems." In this article, "Patterson offers journalists three tips on how to avoid being part of the misinformation problem as well as suggestions for what to do instead."

Preventing the Spread of Misinformation & Disinformation

Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA)

This statement from the Radio Television Digital News Association (RTDNA) offers guidance to journalists on how to protect against spreading false and misleading information.
Resource Database / Guide

How to Responsibly Report on Hacks and Disinformation: 10 guidelines and a template for every newsroom

Stanford Cyber Policy Center

"The run-up to the 2016 U.S. presidential election illustrated how vulnerable our most venerated journalistic outlets are to a new kind of information warfare. Reporters are a targeted adversary of foreign and domestic actors who want to harm our democracy. And to cope with this threat, especially in an election year, news organizations need to prepare for another wave of false, misleading, and hacked information." This report offers a playbook for newsrooms to adopt that includes "core principles and standards for reporting on newsworthy events involving false, misleading and hacked information."

ComSciCon24 Flagship Workshop


The 12th annual ComSciCon Flagship Workshop will be at Emerson College in Boston. ComSciCon provides graduate student attendees with a one-of-a-kind opportunity to meet early career leaders in science communication while also learning from, and interacting with, a remarkable group of invited scicomm experts. ComSciCon empowers future leaders in science communication to share their research and passions with broad and diverse audiences. Attendance at ComSciCon is limited to current (or recently graduated) graduate students in residence at US or Canadian institutions. International students who study at US and Canadian institutions are gladly welcomed. Recent graduates must have graduated no earlier than December 2023. The application deadline is March 22.

Eric and Wendy Schmidt Awards for Excellence in Science Communications

National Academies of Science, Engineering and Medicine, Schmidt Futures

Applications for the 2024 awards are now open, with a deadline of March 31. "The National Academies Eric and Wendy Schmidt Awards for Excellence in Science Communications, given by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine in partnership with Schmidt Sciences, recognize excellent science communicators, science journalists, and research scientists who have developed creative, original work to communicate issues and advances in science, engineering, or medicine for the general public." In 2024, the awards will be given to nine research scientists, nine science journalists, and six science communicators who developed created, original work published or released in 2023 that explores issues or advances in science, engineering or medicine for the general public.

Science journalism in the digital age – online lecture series

German Science Journalists' Association, Science Media Center Germany

The German Science Journalists’ Association and the Science Media Center Germany organized a 2020-21 virtual lecture series on "future-proofing" science journalism in response to structural change in the media environment. A 2023 version of the series included 10 lectures on digital transformation in journalism and practical solutions. That series culminated in a November 2023 conference. Videos of the lectures, some in English and some in German, from the first two series as well as transcripts and additional commentary in English and German are available online in this "knowledge reservoir," and documents from the conference are expected to be added.

Everyone is a climate reporter now

"For many news organizations, especially local ones, climate coverage is still seen as separate and distinct from other beats. But rapidly rising temperatures and a corresponding shift in weather patterns is now the context for most, if not all, news stories." In this article, writer Jill Hopke argues that all reporters should receive training in covering climate issues and discusses some suggestions for how to implement such training.
Resource Database / Guide

Tipsheet: Covering long COVID

This tipsheet shares tips and resources from a session at NICAR, the data journalism conference, about covering Long COVID informed by data, records, and patient experiences. The summary of the session reads: "Long COVID is a public health crisis: Millions of Americans have been impacted by this debilitating condition, many of them facing lost work, hard-to-access medical care and other challenges. This session will introduce you to the basics of covering Long COVID from a data/investigative perspective, including recommendations for datasources, records requests and patient interviews."

Exploring mathematics’ uncrowded space for journalists and writers

International Center for Journalists

This webinar, part of a series about mathematics reporting, discusses how journalists and writers can cover this topic. The session was led by Erica Klarreich, a mathematics writer whose work has been featured in many well-known publications and multiple editions of The Best Writing on Mathematics. Klarreich explained how to uncover captivating stories and opportunities for covering mathematics.

How to pitch climate change stories to editors

International Center for Journalists

This webinar discusses how journalists can wade through the extensive public discussions around climate change to pitch stories that are urgent and impactful. The event featured Greg Mott, sustainability editor at POLITICO, who shared tips for story pitches he would like to see.
Resource Database / Guide

Body Politic’s comprehensive guide to covering long COVID

Body Politic, USC Annenberg

"After a year of writing about long COVID, interviewing patients, and being interviewed myself, I created a comprehensive guide for journalists covering the long-term symptoms of COVID-19," author Fiona Lowenstein writes in an accompanying article at the USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism's website. "To understand more about what we can learn from the past, I talked with veteran health journalists David Tuller, Linda Villarosa, and Julie Rehmeyer, as well as New York Times editorial board member Mara Gay, who is recovering from long COVID. I also spoke with patients and activists to learn more about how patients want reporters to tell their stories."

Science Talk 2024

Association of Science Communicators

Science Talk is the annual conference of the Association of Science Communicators. The 2024 iteration will include virtual programming from April 3-9, and the in-person portion will take place in Portland, Oregon, on April 11-12. All attendees will have access to virtual presentations. The conference features talks, workshops, and networking about science communication projects, research, best practices, and more.

Using ChatGPT for Communications

Methods for Change, Institute for Methods Innovation

"Join us for an immersive workshop series that explores the transformative potential of ChatGPT in enhancing communication strategies and content creation. Whether you’re a science communicator, marketer, content creator, or social media enthusiast, this workshop is designed to equip you with the skills to leverage ChatGPT for creating captivating narratives for videos, engaging social media content, and impactful communication materials such as posters and infographics."

PCST Network

"The Network for the Public Communication of Science and Technology (PCST Network) is an organization that promotes discussion on the theory and practice of communicating science, and of public discourses about science and technology and their role in society." Members come from a range of backgrounds, including researchers working on the theory and practice of science communication, communication staff working for research organizations, staff at science centers and museums, science journalists, and more. The PCST Network has a biennial conference and regular webinars for members.

How do science journalists decide whether a psychology study is worth covering?

"A recent study finds that sample size is the only factor having a robust influence on 181 science journalists’ ratings of the trustworthiness and newsworthiness of a study. But [the authors] note that, overall, these journalists are doing a 'very decent job' vetting research. Here's how they do it."

CASW New Horizons in Science session recordings — ScienceWriters2023


If you missed ScienceWriters2023, the annual meeting of the National Association of Science Writers (NASW) and Council for the Advancement of Science Writing (CASW), you can check out recordings of five sessions from CASW’s Science + Science Writing program on the organization’s YouTube channel. The sessions include covering Long COVID, the toxic train disaster in Ohio, tracking indoor air quality after a wildfire, a primer on the different types of applied AI, and NASA's recent report on unidentified anomalous phenomena (UAPs). Each session features scientific experts as well as journalists discussing best practices for covering a particular topic.

How to report on physics and physicists in an accurate and accessible way

Institute of Physics (IOP)

"You as journalists can have life-changing impacts on those reading, watching or listening. To help, the IOP has produced a guide and a handy checklist to help ensure that your coverage of physics steers clear of entrenched stereotypes and instead presents an accurate representation of our subject and who does it. Our guide is packed with advice, plus we have a toolkit including sources for quotes, tips for inclusive language and links to physics explanations, along with other resources too."
Academic center

USC Annenberg Center for Health Journalism

University of Southern California (USC), USC Annenberg

This center, based at the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, offers a variety of trainings and resources for journalists. It hosts fellowship programs, provides reporting grants, hosts webinars, and sends a regular newsletter about health reporting. Some resources are geared towards health reporters in California, but many apply to those across the U.S.