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Frames of scientific evidence: How journalists represent the (un)certainty of molecular medicine in science television programs


Ruhrmann, Georg; Guenther, Lars; Kessler, Sabrina Heike; Milde, Jutta (2015). Frames of scientific evidence: How journalists represent the (un)certainty of molecular medicine in science television programs. Public Understanding of Science, 24(6):681-696.

Abstract

For laypeople, media coverage of science on television is a gateway to scientific issues. Defining scientific evidence is central to the field of science, but there are still questions if news coverage of science represents scientific research findings as certain or uncertain. The framing approach is a suitable framework to classify different media representations; it is applied here to investigate the frames of scientific evidence in film clips (n = 207) taken from science television programs. Molecular medicine is the domain of interest for this analysis, due to its high proportion of uncertain and conflicting research findings and risks. The results indicate that television clips vary in their coverage of scientific evidence of molecular medicine. Four frames were found: Scientific Uncertainty and Controversy, Scientifically Certain Data, Everyday Medical Risks, and Conflicting Scientific Evidence. They differ in their way of framing scientific evidence and risks of molecular medicine.

Abstract

For laypeople, media coverage of science on television is a gateway to scientific issues. Defining scientific evidence is central to the field of science, but there are still questions if news coverage of science represents scientific research findings as certain or uncertain. The framing approach is a suitable framework to classify different media representations; it is applied here to investigate the frames of scientific evidence in film clips (n = 207) taken from science television programs. Molecular medicine is the domain of interest for this analysis, due to its high proportion of uncertain and conflicting research findings and risks. The results indicate that television clips vary in their coverage of scientific evidence of molecular medicine. Four frames were found: Scientific Uncertainty and Controversy, Scientifically Certain Data, Everyday Medical Risks, and Conflicting Scientific Evidence. They differ in their way of framing scientific evidence and risks of molecular medicine.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Department of Communication and Media Research
Dewey Decimal Classification:700 Arts
Uncontrolled Keywords:Framing, molecular medicine, risks, scientific evidence, television coverage of science
Language:English
Date:2015
Deposited On:25 Jan 2019 14:14
Last Modified:25 Jan 2019 14:14
Publisher:Sage Publications Ltd.
ISSN:0963-6625
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1177/0963662513510643

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