PhD & PDEng Day explores the role of scientists in ‘post-fact society’

| Michaela Nesvarova

Carrying the theme ‘science in a post-fact society’, the annual PhD & PDEng Day will be held on the 24th of November in the Gallery on campus. The event will include keynote speeches by UT honorary doctors Jamie Hyneman and Wim van Saarloos.

The event, organized by PhD Network of the University of Twente (P-NUT), wants to explore the role of young scientists in the current ‘post-truth society’, explains P-NUT vice-president Rob Bemthuis. ‘Especially during the pandemic, we’ve noticed that people receive information from many different sources and find it difficult to distinguish the true facts from fake news. For example, many people don’t trust RIVM, but believe dubious posts on Facebook.’

‘Distrust in science appears to be emerging,’ continues Bemthuis. ‘That is why we wanted to dedicate the PhD & PDEng Day to discussing what role we, as doctoral candidates, can play in reaching out to society more.’

That is one of the reasons why P-NUT is excited to have MythBuster Jamie Hyneman as one of the main keynote speakers at the event, says the organizer. ‘Jamie is a bombastic speaker for us. On the TV show, he was using science to test myths and facts and helped make science visible. I think he will help attract audience and bring an inspiring discussion about the theme of post-fact society.’

The second keynote speech will be given by Wim van Saarloos who is receiving the UT honorary doctorate this year. The event’s programme will also include workshop sessions, such as the ‘social sorting experiment’, and a panel discussion with various scientists.

Registration is required in order to join the P-NUT PhD & PDEng Day. The event can welcome maximum 120 participants and all attendees will need to show their Covid certificate before entering.

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