The link between science and society

“Should public opinion be intrinsically a problem that can only be dealt with retrospectively, after an issue has arisen? Should society not wait until after the science has been completed before getting involved? This reasoning is nonsense, particularly as public involvement is already a reality – whether we like it or not, whether we encourage it or not. Research policy in a democratic Europe must take public opinion into account, and it should do this from the very start. Today, the question is not so much as to whether the knowledge society is compatible with democracy. It cannot exist without a society that is truly democratic in all its processes, including the governance of knowledge.”

Massimiano Bucchi
Sociologist of Science, Trente University, Italy

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