Mapping the landscape of public attitudes on synthetic biology

Heather Akin, Kathleen M. Rose, Dietram A. Scheufele, Molly Simis-Wilkinson, Dominique Brossard, Michael A. Xenos, Elizabeth Corley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

This research offers one of the first analyses of the US public's views about synthetic biology, based on nationally representative survey data. We provide in-depth, multiyear descriptive results of public attitudes toward this issue and compare them with individuals' attitudes toward other issues. Our data indicate that the public does not generally feel informed about synthetic biology or believe it is personally important. However, Americans express more reservations about the moral downside of synthetic biology than about other issues. Multivariate analysis reveals that values and predispositions-particularly religiosity, deference to scientific authority and trust in scientists-are linked to support for synthetic biology. We also see evidence indicating that deference to scientific authority reduces the potential for religiosity and distrust in scientists to polarize public attitudes about synthetic biology. We conclude by describing the implications of our findings for the development of synthetic biology research and upstream public engagement.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)290-300
Number of pages11
JournalBioScience
Volume67
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - 2017

Fingerprint

Synthetic Biology
synthetic biology
public opinion
Research
multivariate analysis
Multivariate Analysis

Keywords

  • Attitudes
  • Deference To Scientific Authority
  • Public Opinion
  • Synthetic Biology
  • Values

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)

Cite this

Akin, H., Rose, K. M., Scheufele, D. A., Simis-Wilkinson, M., Brossard, D., Xenos, M. A., & Corley, E. (2017). Mapping the landscape of public attitudes on synthetic biology. BioScience, 67(3), 290-300. https://doi.org/10.1093/biosci/biw171

Mapping the landscape of public attitudes on synthetic biology. / Akin, Heather; Rose, Kathleen M.; Scheufele, Dietram A.; Simis-Wilkinson, Molly; Brossard, Dominique; Xenos, Michael A.; Corley, Elizabeth.

In: BioScience, Vol. 67, No. 3, 2017, p. 290-300.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Akin, H, Rose, KM, Scheufele, DA, Simis-Wilkinson, M, Brossard, D, Xenos, MA & Corley, E 2017, 'Mapping the landscape of public attitudes on synthetic biology', BioScience, vol. 67, no. 3, pp. 290-300. https://doi.org/10.1093/biosci/biw171
Akin H, Rose KM, Scheufele DA, Simis-Wilkinson M, Brossard D, Xenos MA et al. Mapping the landscape of public attitudes on synthetic biology. BioScience. 2017;67(3):290-300. https://doi.org/10.1093/biosci/biw171
Akin, Heather ; Rose, Kathleen M. ; Scheufele, Dietram A. ; Simis-Wilkinson, Molly ; Brossard, Dominique ; Xenos, Michael A. ; Corley, Elizabeth. / Mapping the landscape of public attitudes on synthetic biology. In: BioScience. 2017 ; Vol. 67, No. 3. pp. 290-300.
@article{69db27f5863742a4b3dbd3f60c3689f7,
title = "Mapping the landscape of public attitudes on synthetic biology",
abstract = "This research offers one of the first analyses of the US public's views about synthetic biology, based on nationally representative survey data. We provide in-depth, multiyear descriptive results of public attitudes toward this issue and compare them with individuals' attitudes toward other issues. Our data indicate that the public does not generally feel informed about synthetic biology or believe it is personally important. However, Americans express more reservations about the moral downside of synthetic biology than about other issues. Multivariate analysis reveals that values and predispositions-particularly religiosity, deference to scientific authority and trust in scientists-are linked to support for synthetic biology. We also see evidence indicating that deference to scientific authority reduces the potential for religiosity and distrust in scientists to polarize public attitudes about synthetic biology. We conclude by describing the implications of our findings for the development of synthetic biology research and upstream public engagement.",
keywords = "Attitudes, Deference To Scientific Authority, Public Opinion, Synthetic Biology, Values",
author = "Heather Akin and Rose, {Kathleen M.} and Scheufele, {Dietram A.} and Molly Simis-Wilkinson and Dominique Brossard and Xenos, {Michael A.} and Elizabeth Corley",
year = "2017",
doi = "10.1093/biosci/biw171",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "67",
pages = "290--300",
journal = "BioScience",
issn = "0006-3568",
publisher = "American Institute of Biological Sciences",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Mapping the landscape of public attitudes on synthetic biology

AU - Akin, Heather

AU - Rose, Kathleen M.

AU - Scheufele, Dietram A.

AU - Simis-Wilkinson, Molly

AU - Brossard, Dominique

AU - Xenos, Michael A.

AU - Corley, Elizabeth

PY - 2017

Y1 - 2017

N2 - This research offers one of the first analyses of the US public's views about synthetic biology, based on nationally representative survey data. We provide in-depth, multiyear descriptive results of public attitudes toward this issue and compare them with individuals' attitudes toward other issues. Our data indicate that the public does not generally feel informed about synthetic biology or believe it is personally important. However, Americans express more reservations about the moral downside of synthetic biology than about other issues. Multivariate analysis reveals that values and predispositions-particularly religiosity, deference to scientific authority and trust in scientists-are linked to support for synthetic biology. We also see evidence indicating that deference to scientific authority reduces the potential for religiosity and distrust in scientists to polarize public attitudes about synthetic biology. We conclude by describing the implications of our findings for the development of synthetic biology research and upstream public engagement.

AB - This research offers one of the first analyses of the US public's views about synthetic biology, based on nationally representative survey data. We provide in-depth, multiyear descriptive results of public attitudes toward this issue and compare them with individuals' attitudes toward other issues. Our data indicate that the public does not generally feel informed about synthetic biology or believe it is personally important. However, Americans express more reservations about the moral downside of synthetic biology than about other issues. Multivariate analysis reveals that values and predispositions-particularly religiosity, deference to scientific authority and trust in scientists-are linked to support for synthetic biology. We also see evidence indicating that deference to scientific authority reduces the potential for religiosity and distrust in scientists to polarize public attitudes about synthetic biology. We conclude by describing the implications of our findings for the development of synthetic biology research and upstream public engagement.

KW - Attitudes

KW - Deference To Scientific Authority

KW - Public Opinion

KW - Synthetic Biology

KW - Values

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=85019944475&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=85019944475&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1093/biosci/biw171

DO - 10.1093/biosci/biw171

M3 - Article

VL - 67

SP - 290

EP - 300

JO - BioScience

JF - BioScience

SN - 0006-3568

IS - 3

ER -