Ray Mathias: setting us free

Ray Mathias worked in plant biotechnology research for 15 years, before moving into science communication and education. He now spends his time helping scientists and engineers make their subjects accessible and engaging for non-specialists.

Science is a powerful expression of two of the defining qualities of humans - creativity and curiosity; especially when creativity and curiosity are used to explore, and try to make sense of, our place in the universe.

Science is important because the scientific method is a powerful means to test our thinking about the way the material world works. It enables us to collect and test evidence, objectively. It is also provides a framework for interpreting evidence and making evidence-based predictions and decisions.

Science is important because it gives us opportunities and options for changing the world we live in (… regrettably science does not tell us which opportunities and options are the right ones to take).

Finally, science is important because scientific knowledge has (potentially) set us free from a great deal of superstition, fear and suffering through improvements in diet, health care, medicine, clothing, housing and communications, wherever there has been the political will or economic imperative to translate scientific knowledge into beneficial new technologies.

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