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The flow of scientific knowledge from lab to the lay public: the case of biotechnology food.

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Nora J. Bird, Assistant Professor (Creator)
Institution
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: This article reports on a study of how scientific knowledge about genetically modified (GM) food flows to the American public, focusing on language and message genres in the scientific literature, newspapers, and popular magazines. A comprehensive search of these literatures from 1992 to 2002 revealed a publishing pattern of scientific communication that contrasted with that found in the lay press. Examination of this difference led researchers to a scientific study on the effect of GM corn pollen on the Monarch butterfly. The case study of the discourse surrounding this event demonstrates how press releases affect what is published in the popular press. The role of this event in generating subtle repercussions in the perceptions of U.S. consumers, similar to the ripple effects found in Kasperson’s social amplification of risk theory, is analyzed and reported.

Additional Information

Publication
Science Communication, 26, 44-74
Language: English
Date: 2004
Keywords
Biotechnology, Genetically modified food, Scholarly publishing, Media studies, Consumer learning, Knowledge development, Newspapers, GM food