Thursday, July 12, 2007

The Scientific Method v. The Union of Concerned Scientists Method

This 'toon from PhD Comics, 9/6/2006, while not specifically written with the Union of Concerned Scientists in mind, can be applied pretty well to the methodology of that environmental advocacy group. See this earlier post for an example of the UCS Method in action.

(click to view full-sized image)

One significant difference in the UCS' version of The Actual Method is in the Publish Paper step. Instead of submitting their paper to a scientific journal, they self-publish and announce their results in a press conference, and their "hypothesis" (which is never actually called that) is dutifully reported by the media.

I doubt there is any other way they can get their apocalyptic guesswork in print. Let the UCS submit something like this to a scientific journal and see how far it gets them.