(79 Answers)


I think it would be hard to curb such attacks in the era of viral social media posts that can obfuscate any logic


-Education at schools and high schools
- use of social media to spread scientific knowledge


Education and free air time on various media outlets.


More regulations on public opinions of those in positions of power or influence with no educational background in the topic. They are to be regulated using the same requirements required for medical doctors, no matter the avenue of expression. 


Freedom of speech rights to scientist, and police protection to scientist when sensitive information is discussed in any public forum. 


 No tactics to recommend. 


We Scientists have to have all fair means to deal the issues


I didn't answer yes, but my advice is turn off the social media websites (which are full of B.S. any way) and work with your professional scientific societies and write peer reviewed commentary.  Forget the rest of the noise and stick to what makes you curious and searching the truth for.  Also, be better mentors to the people doing the real work (i.e., graduate students and post docs).


Have a support system and legal fund for scientists within professional organizations.


It's amazing how, during the COVID crisis for example, many scientific experts disappeared from public view. Perhaps rightly so as the general public, in my humble opinion, lacks a clear understanding of what science is and is not. Many are scientifically illiterate and hence attack scientists for doing what they have been trained to do and that is share their views on a given subject. Unfortunately, we leave it to the media to educate the public. Not a good idea since it becomes all about ratings not science. How to counteract this? Well, from what I have observed, spend more time and resources on communications. The immediate goal should be to communicate to the public in a clear, concise, transparent way what the scientist is trying to convey. The overall goal should be to develop trust with your audience. But, alas, the public is fickle. You can be a good scientist, who when you comment on something in public, now become a lightning rod for an attack.


I actually think that the individual scientists under threat should organize into larger groups and engage in a coordinated effort to lobby the government and to better educate the general public about the factual basis of the situation and provide history-based examples of events where uninformed advocates of incorrect positions have seriously hampered policies, understanding, and progress.  In my opinion, the general public does not have an accurate view of the evolutionary characteristics of the scientific process, nor do they have an understanding that EVERYTHING in life has both costs and benefits, and the challenge is to weigh these two things against one another in order to make an informed and accurate decision.


Educate the public on scientific opinions and the purpose of them. 


more funding is required in any case from government. Public research must grow faster than private research . The lobby of money-driven science is what the public opinion fears. Increasing non profit research and advancement would ensure people start trusting a product is genuinely in their interest and not for profit. Media needs to be more neutral and science exposed and treated as facts not as an opinion with equal weight as the opinion of a celebrity (with absolutely no expertise in science). 


I have no idea how we are going to save science from this sort of behavior.


Teach people the difference between opinions informed by evidence vs opinions based on conspiracy theories. 


Speak clearly and to the point, in a way that can be understood by lay persons. A very difficult aspect of describing scientific findings is to explain that we are most of the time not 100% certain, and that the scientific method includes disproving of hypothesis.


It is important that all children are educated in the scientific method - not just in science.  Understanding how to evaluate evidence and draw conclusion for yourself is important to everybody.


To counter the hindrance of scientific progress due to attacks, fostering a culture of respectful debate, emphasizing evidence-based discussions, and promoting science communication skills is vital. Establishing anonymous reporting mechanisms for harassment, supporting affected scientists, and involving prominent figures to defend researchers can also mitigate the impact. Strengthening science education and media literacy among the public can promote a more informed and rational engagement with scientific topics, reducing the influence of misinformation and unwarranted attacks.


The scientific debate and discussion can be open to a broader society. However, the judgment over scientific problems should be limited to the professional community. The scientific community should gain the consensus that selectively suppressing certain opinions might harm the advancement of science. 


Keeping evidence based but also open to scrunity. 
Attacks are personal
Criticisms are professional 


Education of public as to the value of the science. 


Peer reviewed publication prior to public pronouncements
Increase public understanding of science, beginning at a young age with school children 


My own work has been critiqued by other scientists in journal articles. I’ve not shied away from returning the favor when I publish on the same topic.


To continue convincing the parties and gradual change may happen. 


I believe the most important recommendation for overcoming this curb/dilemma on the advancement of science is to seriously (not by lip services) consider to switch the culture of 'who you know' to the culture of 'what you know'.  Currently, there is a lack of involvement of competent, independent and devoted scientists in decision making roles in medical science system (academia, governments and associated scientific/medical organizations). 
Another relevant issue is for professionals to consider and apply medical ethics and conflict of interest, by separating drug/vaccine pushers (Big pharma) or 'philanthropists' (disease investors) from research institutions-governments-academia.   Drugs-vaccines manufacturers should be accountable for the harms they cause to public health. Heavy propaganda by Big pharma in support of major media for advertising vaccines and drugs should be minimized and eliminated.  In the last few decades (since 1986), vaccine companies became legally immune from liability.  As a result, vaccines became new ‘safe’ and ‘fashionable’ terms for drugging young and old for financial gains and control of a sick and drug-dependent society by medical establishment. 
Policy makers should take a closer and independent look at the medical establishment, a partnership between governments-Big pharma and disease investors (‘philanthropists’) who created a huge for-profit corporation, against public health and well-being. Role of lobbyists in election campaigns for policy makers should also be seriously considered and minimized.  


Scientists should be protected and allowed to work without fear. Initiatives such as better educating the general public would help, by giving everyone a better understanding of why the research is needed, showing that all research is carried out under strict governance to ensure no ethical issues, so that they can trust the work is going on with suitable control measures. 


Free speech on Science and policy matters should be one of the criteria for assessing and rating an institute. feedback should come fro individuals and not administrators


After publishing a scientific paper, publish also a version understandable and accesible to the general public.
Be a part of a mutualy supporting group of people with diverse capabilities in science, law, public relations and others.


Form a coalition with fellow travelers and seek out legitimate outlets for those opinions.


Difficult: I am struggling with me saying my peace or keeping my mouth shut.


More liberty should be given to scientist to disseminate their information. Institutes at government level should encourage critical thinking and train community about accepting new thoughts and innovations.


Opting for consistent recurrent funding rather than competitive funding appears to be a more favorable approach, as it facilitates uninhibited exploration and helps mitigate the repercussions of assaults on scientists.


Support toxicology NGOs that work to educate the public: SOT, Toxicology Education Foundation, TERA


A strong norm for demonstrating solidarity on core, common scientific values - regardless of particular opinions.


don't know


Describe your position using available data and resulting projections in layman's terms via workshops and social media.


Find open-minded scientists and supporters of the science who are interested and willing to organize events and provide the tools for conveying good science and the proper interpretation of the science, including a very transparent disclosure and explanation of the uncertainties inherent in risk assessment and risk management.  


It is difficult since the world experiences less and less free and independent research. Research councils usually earmark calls with certain labels that are governed by the present "political correctness".


  1. Boost Funding: Increase financial support from governments, private entities, and philanthropists to drive research and development.
  2. Foster Collaboration: Encourage interdisciplinary teamwork for fresh perspectives and faster innovation.
  3. Open Sharing: Promote open access to research data and findings to speed up progress.
  4. Ethics and Efficiency: Balance ethical considerations and regulations to avoid stifling innovation.
  5. Inclusive Teams: Cultivate diversity, aid early-career researchers, and incentivize breakthroughs for swift scientific advancements.


1. Engage in one-on-one discussions with important potential detractors, particularly those who might be swayed, as often as possible. The greatest "enemy" of science funding can be found in public hearings where one or more individuals have the opportunity to grandstand for the press or other believers in their points of view. It is better to bring opposition around in small discussions away from the press, but it is also important to be careful with how opinions are expressed in private, or they may become public talking points that shine an unfavorable light on the nature of science and scientific research.


Strong regulatory support, particularly against private companies, govt funding to pursue independent research


Just ignoringthe attacks and trying to be brave in sharing


Start early, start young, start with responding positively to the natural curiosity of children. Then stay curious yourself. Be kind, but never lose the questioning edge when engaged with the policy world. Offer to educate; don't talk down or pontificate. Ask questions, modeling the kind of behaviors you'd want to see non-scientists demonstrate. Look for effective envoys and translators. Learn from the great science communicators, such as Neil deGrasse Tyson, Anthony Fauci, Jane Goodall, et al.

Invite politicians and policy makers to symposia and colloquia that are deliberately designed to engage the science and the policy. Embrace the "naive" questions that public figures have, and show them how to translate those questions into researchable questions. Science can intimidate (smart people can intimidate, no matter what), so learn how to communicate without "dumbing down." Share the questions, not the answers. Non-scientists get excited when their own questions are at the edge of what we know.

Help the public and particularly politicians and policy makers understand how scientists actually work, and how science and discovery are often based on serendipity and accident. We often find the answer by making mistakes. There's often a lot of very smart fumbling at the root of many scientific discoveries. Help politicians understand that uncertainty is the foundation of good science. And finally, if you could force somebody to read a single book, it should probably be Thomas Kuhn's "Structure of Scientific Revolutions."


hard money tenure is the only protection, and culture in science (esp. among administrators that values truth-seeking over political correctness. both of these are increasingly rare, hence the rise of the effectiveness of attacks on scientist.


If possible, offer countering positions through peer-reviewed publications describing new and/or other data supporting a positiion. Consider using forums sponsored by professional societies or letters to the editor of scientifc journals. Work with professional societies to organize or participate in public sessions discussing positions.


In my case, strengthening anti-defamation laws would have possibly averted some of the attacks. Requiring the media to return to the doctrine that required the presentation of pro and contrary opinions, and their basis, from the scientists of a study in question.


Institutions have to commit to support researchers by including this in their mission and vision. In addition, government agencies have to commit to defend researchers against attacks on scientists assigning resources to do this.


Personal attacks on scientists and their families are achieving the attackers' goals of silencing those of us not willing to put our families at risk. These attacks should be investigated and prosecuted as hate crimes to allow for fighting against the various misinformation campaigns.


It's hard isn't it. The media and exposure that people have throughout their lives spreads a lot of misinformation, which is one issue. The other issue is that people should just not be attacked - respectful dialogue. How do you encourage (force?) people to be more respectful? This is a society problem, a global problem, a parenting problem maybe. . . ? I don't think we can stop it unfortunately.


Better science education in K-12 school, less divisive rhetoric from politicians and the media making it sound like science is just opinion and scientists are out to do harm.


Scientists who care about the subject should come together and express themselves.


We need to learn to share our knowledge and opinions in a convincing and persuasive way. It's also about our attitude. It's not about "us" and "them". After all it's our common problems that we need to solve.


More protection on the side of government and politician, trying to cultivate independent and honest media space, education from eary age of importance of science


No thought of science should be given in public until it is having great impact or having almost zero side effect to any thing. Instead the final outcome should be revealed taking all the administration into confidence.


Publication of negative results.


We need to know the source of the threat,
We should have honest critics and a diversified partners,
We should be transparent about financial sources and also know where policy starts.


Just do your job with the highest quality and openness


Oh yes of course! Gamification of science in pre-school, middle-school and high-school. Increase accessibility of science, through Open Source and Open Access policies.


Just stay firm in your opinion and justify all conclusions


Outreach & Public relations for the topics can help when the outrage is based in mythology. The first key is to address the outrage by identifying and either modifying the cause (ie, dislike of the approach - replacing animal work with NAMs), or educating (there are no fetuses in the vaccine). It can be especially challenging when the outrage is based on false information from an Authority ("I saw on TV that.../My [politician] said..."), as this individual is not open to conflicting information from a stranger, or the individual is a well-educated scientist leveraging simplified or reductionist thinking. In some cases, I think it is appropriate to pause research in a specific area if the general public is very unhappy or upset with some unchangeable aspect of it, even if it means sacrificing potential life-saving treatments.


Increased awareness and public engagement.


Enforce a high and impenetrable wall between political power and religion. If there needs to be bloodshed, so be it.


- critical thinking skills should be incorporated into the education system from a young age (grade school)
- proper debate and discussion skills should be taught at all ages and enforced in public spaces, allowing for the encouragement of self expression while allowing for proper guard rails to protect individual safety and integrity


Anonymous whistleblowing, opinion pieces in news or media from outside the country, join organizations that can protect expression rights.


I sent some letters of lawyers to the Editors of journal who wanted my articles (already accepted by reviewers and the Editor himself ) retracted.


Do not be afraid in sharing our professional opinion, when it is based scientific results that come from a well done research
Do not be afrain in thinking that maybe other professionals may have different opinions which can may be better than yours


1. Stay bold, Protest against it.
2. Make strong decisions, don't let others utilize you for their own benefit.
3. Complain against them to the higher authority.


One way to combat attacks on science is to promote science education and literacy among the general public. This can help people better understand the scientific process and the value of scientific evidence, and can help counter misinformation or conspiracy theories that are often used to attack scientists


Scientists should always be willing to speak out on their factual, evidence-based opinions. Some of the best examples of scientific advancement come from open debate among scientists with differing views. Ideally, media outlets would give even hand to reasonable arguments from any side of an issue.


Choose carefully alliances


This may well be the largest challenge the scientific community will be facing in our lifetime. It is probably more of a strategy than a tactic, but I believe global collaboration is required to address this issue. Through institutions such as the e.g., the UN or the OECD, the topic can be put on the political agenda of countries around the world. I believe that national and international policies are required in order to fix the increasingly aggressive climate. It may also be vital to penalize attacks on scientists and the sharing of fake news and pseudo-science. Politicians and high-profile opinion makers should structurally and pro-actively condemn attacks on science and scientists.


Know the audience and judge whether or not revealing information is of value to you.


Promote science communication to the public and educate people on how science work and the research process.


The attacks should be redirected to the situation and topic at hand and not the person. It's important to set a tone for healthy discourse depending on the platform and at some point choose the right platform where to disclose opinions. The latter is more for the discretion of the scientist. But, it's always share inputs to a committed group of people who agree to provide a conducive space where healthy discourse can be done and definitely, no ad hominem.


Ignore ignorance. Educate rather than argue.


Try to engage with the attackers and imbibe some sense and rationale in arguments.


Organized protection of scientists


Not to be intimidated. Alway continues with your work. Be confident while discussing your findings.


The scientists should politely but firmly explain the reasons

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