Communicating with other people is hard, especially if it is about scientific data. But it can be easy if you have the right tools.
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Accessibility to scientific Data
The first point of using Data is to acquire it. For People who have never used scientific Data before it can be very hard to find reliable and serious Data. Most scientific research results are only published in specific journals or at certain websites that are only accessible for Scientists and researchers. There are certain Websites or Projects that work towards the accessibility of Data for everyone. The need is high for a Hub where you can find relevant and quality scientific papers, articles etc.. There are already certain guidelines such as the “FAIR-Data Principles” but we need more!
Analysing and Understanding the Data
Unless you are a researcher or a scientist, it is not easy to understand or even read a scientific paper or article. Not everybody learns how to use Data correctly and this can result in falsification of correct Data. There is no universal answer on how to use Data correctly, but if you try to understand it, it is a start. Don’t go towards the Data with a certain attitude. Be open towards all Data, even if it doesn’t support your beliefs. If you understand the Data, it is easier to communicate it.
Scientists need to transport their Data with clarity and empathy, because nor everybody understands the dreary way of writing papers. Since Data should be accessible for everybody, it should also be understandable for everybody. Noteverybody understands scientific terminology, so it is easier to explain the Data or research results in more common terms. It would help if researchers could create templates or visuals to disseminate scientific studies and their results.
Right now it is quite hard to acquire and understand Data, but there are already great efforts for easy and accessible Data. Activists should show that they want to use scientific Data and also put in some Effort to support those who publish and research Data. And maybe not only stay in your own bubble/chamber but also try to take the perspective of your counterpart.
Communicating the Data
After you have good, serious and reliable Data, you need to communicate with others.
There are certain principles on effective Communication:
Nonverbal communication: For good communication you also need to incorporate your facial expressions or body posture. Your counterpart will also react to your nonverbal communication.
controlling emotions: This is the most important part of communication, because people react defensively towards emotions. Try to be serious and convince them with facts and not emotions
Careful listening: If you listen to your counterpart, you maybe can understand what they want to hear and which Data they will like
Be patient: Sometimes it might be harder and stressful to communicate with others, but this is just our human nature. Just be patient and try to be calm and supportive.
Be open: There isn’t a universal answer for all problems and activism topics. Sometimes the answers are not yours. Just be open to different approaches towards some topics.
Using Data to convince
After you have good, serious and reliable Data, you need to include your facts in your communication. If you try to convince others with emotions, they will close up and won’t listen to you anymore. But don’t try to push your facts and Datas on others. This will only make them locked and withdrawn. Try to create a diverse knowledge of different topics, even if the position is oppositional to yours. It only helps to see the other aspects. Science is a very complicated thing. There will always be different approaches toward a specific topic. Accept them and try to be considerate when you communicate with others.
How to contribute
You can make this article better by:
Outline main principles of setting up the Hub and the Template. Learn/ teach to analyse scientific Data
Tips for reading and interpreting scientific studies without a scientific background