A friend of mine, with an overly sceptical view of natural sciences, sent me this article on how "science" is often misused to perpetuate and "proove" our held beliefs, norms and associated behaviours.
The article lists a number of amusing (and scary) anecdotes about misused science, and comes up with the following five items to watch out for:
1 Do the Conclusions Fit a Little Too Well With Cultural Stereotypes?
2 Does the Study Agree With the Headline?
3 Can You Spot the Double Standard for men and women!
4 Is There Another Conclusion That Would be Just as Valid?
5 Is the Study Even Science?
I love to quote research findings that I find entertaining on this blog, and while I often like to do additional research on stuff I read and hear, I do agree that before believing any results you find you definitely should question them.
However, where I disagree with the article is where it states that scientific research should only be read and interpreted by those with an education to do so. It IS important that we provide access to science through blogs, media, popular scientific literature etc.
Summarily rejecting any type of quantitative research and saying it's not to be popularly consumed (… or as the article sometimes seem to hint: not even possible to execute) based on a number anecdotes is hardly good science nor, in my view, accurate.