(Mis)trust of scientific expertise is evident in communication. For example, mistrust may be expressed in challenges to or dismissal of scientific knowledge and the promotion of alternative forms of knowing. Trust, on the other hand, has long been an object of sociological interest and is a central concern as it supports cooperative behaviours and innovation. While trust is highly relevant in the context of scientific expertise, mistrust of scientific expertise has been largely under-investigated.
This project interprets trust and mistrust of scientific expertise as cultural and communicated phenomena, entangled in values and evident in the discourses that convey them. The motivation for this project is that by greater understanding cultural expressions of mistrust of scientific expertise, we may be closer to finding ways of addressing it.
This project investigates expressions of (mis)trust as they relate to the vaccination and climate debates in web data. Two leading research infrastructure centres at AU Arts support the retrieval and analysis of the digital text: Netarkivet and the Centre for Humanities Computing.