published March 13, 2014

Dan Kahan Appointed NCSCE Senior Fellow

Dan M. Kahan, whose challenging 2013 SENCER Summer Institute plenary session continues to spur discussions among staff and community members, has joined the National Center for Science and Civic Engagement as a Senior Fellow.

Dan M. Kahan is the Elizabeth K. Dollard Professor of Law and Professor of Psychology at Yale Law School. He is a member of the Cultural Cognition Project, an interdisciplinary team of scholars who use empirical methods to examine the impact of group values on perceptions of risk and science communication. In studies funded by the National Science Foundation, Professor Kahan and his collaborators have investigated the processes that ordinarily guide diverse citizens to the best available evidence, and the steps a democratic society should take to safeguard those processes from disruption. Current topics of investigation include how critical reasoning faculties relate to political conflict over science and how evidence-based methods can be used to improve communication of science relevant to local democratic decisionmaking. Articles featuring the Project's studies have appeared in a variety of peer-reviewed scholarly journals including the Journal of Risk Research, Judgment and Decision Making, Nature Climate Change, Science, and Nature.

As a Senior Fellow, Professor Kahan will continue to contribute his insight and expertise to Center initiatives and planning. As mentioned above, he will also give a plenary session at SSI 2014 in Asheville this summer, which will doubtlessly provide a starting point for deep investigation into the impacts of cultural cognition on education practices, and generally across our society to public policy decisions.