SCIENCE IN THE CRISIS
SCIENCE FOR SUSTAINABLE FUTURE
Science In The Crisis is an initiative that was born as a natural response to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020 and a platform where we examine facts and myths surrounding the pandemic, while critically questioning them with scientific instruments.
This is a space for debate on the measures, including the economic ones, for coping with the crises, as well as counteracting fake news about the coronavirus. We work for popularizing the vaccination campaign against COVID-19. Counteracting false facts about vaccines is also essential for fighting the epidemic.
The group and page on Facebook “Science in the Crisis – Наука в кризата” were created in June 2020. Members of the group are citizens from all socio-economic groups of the population. Medical experts take part, as well as representatives of the scientific community, government authorities, journalists and citizens that would like to receive timely, comprehensive and authentic information from traceable sources. Its moderators and administrators are members of our team with diverse backgrounds and various interests including the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.
The examined fake news are in two main thematic directions. The first one is dethroning the myths surrounding the origin and protection methods, as well as treatment of COVID-19. Numerous articles and opinions expressed by scientists are being shared online. According to them the infection was artificially created in order to rearrange the global order and put the citizens under total dependency and control by the government authorities worldwide. These are followed by publications in which COVID-19 is claimed to be a biological weapon created by the USA to destroy their political enemies worldwide. Additionally, there are opinions according to which it was created to lay down new pathways for the pharmaceutical giants and the large commercial companies in Western countries.
The second theme is horizontal and concerns coping with the consequences after loosening the epidemiological measures as a result of COVID-19 and the economic recovery of countries.
On a daily basis we need to overrule and explain these statements that undermine the foundations of the democratic society we live in, yet they endanger the efforts made by the healthcare system for coping with the crises. There are numerous claims on the resilience and the government abilities in these countries to cope with similar big crises. According to the opinions being disseminated, the authoritarian and totalitarian systems counteract more firmly when it comes to the measures for coping with the disease, as well as in their readiness for rapid economic recovery after that.
UNITED IN KNOWLEDGE
Another important direction of the group’s activity is translating information about the origin, effect and administration of vaccines against COVID-19. Coping with pandemics depends mainly on the implementation of a rapid and targeted immunization campaign. The non-pharmacological measures should be specifically implemented, according to the local features of infection control, yet vaccines are the instrument for the final virus uprooting. The anti vaxxer rhetoric is traditionally popular among the population which is also confirmed by the published sociological surveys concerning vaccines against COVID-19. The difficulties an effective campaign for immunization against the virus faces are another focus of publications in the group. Counteracting false news about medicinal products is the task most difficult to solve in this puzzle, yet our mission is to help society and healthcare authorities in this regard.
Overruling such theses and articles in real time, with checked and authentic information would increase the trust in the official governmental institutions and the international partners of the Republic of Bulgaria. This would ensure more sustainable crisis management and would minimize the economic damages. The active citizens with positions, as well as the young population being our target audience use social media daily as a source of information. We would achieve the effect of overruling the false information sources they use and data for shaping up an opinion.