[Editor's Note: This video is the first of a five-part series titled "The Future Is Now: The Revolutionary Power of Stem Cell Research." Produced in partnership with the Regenerative Medicine Foundation, and filmed at the annual 2019 World Stem Cell Summit, this series illustrates how stem cell research will profoundly impact life on earth. A new video will be published every Monday this month.]
Thu Nov 12, 2020 12:00pm - 1:10pm EDT
LeapsMag, the Aspen Institute's Science and Society Program, and GOOD
"The Future of Science in America Summit" will dive into the high stakes ahead as we emerge from a hotly contested election, with the pandemic on the upswing.
Through rotating paired conversations with five experts from academia, industry, advocacy, and government, followed by a public Q&A, this event will explore (re)building public trust in science, the latest science and policy developments on the COVID vaccine front, and moonshots in science that deserve prioritization over the next four years.
Nancy Messonnier, M.D.
Director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases (NCIRD)
Founder, Plus1Vote, a nonprofit organization dedicated to getting out the vote on issues such as climate change and equality
France Córdova, Ph.D.
Astrophysicist, past Director of the National Science Foundation, past President of Purdue University
Joseph DeRisi, Ph.D.
Professor of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of California San Francisco and Co-President, Chan Zuckerberg Biohub
Global Head of the Office of Innovation, Global Health, and Policy Communication, Johnson & Johnson
Michelle McMurry-Heath, M.D., Ph.D.
President and CEO of the Biotechnology Innovation Organization (BIO)
This summit is co-hosted by LeapsMag, the Aspen Institute Science & Society Program, and the social impact company GOOD, with support from the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation and the Rita Allen Foundation.
The event accompanies our recently published digital magazine, The Future of Science in America: The Election Issue.
This article is part of the magazine, "The Future of Science In America: The Election Issue," co-published by LeapsMag, the Aspen Institute Science & Society Program, and GOOD.
Whenever you hear something repeated, it feels more true. In other words, repetition makes any statement seem more accurate. So anything you hear again will resonate more each time it's said.
Do you see what I did there? Each of the three sentences above conveyed the same message. Yet each time you read the next sentence, it felt more and more true. Cognitive neuroscientists and behavioral economists like myself call this the "illusory truth effect."
Go back and recall your experience reading the first sentence. It probably felt strange and disconcerting, perhaps with a note of resistance, as in "I don't believe things more if they're repeated!"
Reading the second sentence did not inspire such a strong reaction. Your reaction to the third sentence was tame by comparison.
Why? Because of a phenomenon called "cognitive fluency," meaning how easily we process information. Much of our vulnerability to deception in all areas of life—including to fake news and misinformation—revolves around cognitive fluency in one way or another. And unfortunately, such misinformation can swing major elections.