We are being bombarded with information about COVID-19. It is not always easy for the individual to tell apart established knowledge from unproven scientific theories, rumours and misinformation. In consequence, conspiracy theories are on the rise and frustration about conflicting information is growing. What can we do?

The role of scientists

Scientists play a central role in the COVID-19 ‘infodemic’. Not only epidemiologists have something to say about this crisis. The pandemic endangers economic stability, it carries mental health risks, raises questions about social responsibility and changes states’ influence on individual freedom. The expertise of researchers from medicine and biology, but also social sciences, humanities and economics is urgently needed to counter misinformation.

Our project

We are a team of researchers from the University of Amsterdam and we are committed to contribute to the fight of the ‘infodemic’. Over the course of 6 months, we will conduct anonymous surveys investigating how scientists spread and seek COVID-19 related information on different media channels. How do they adapt to the ‘infodemic’? Which strategies are effective to communicate scientific findings? We will use our insights to inform governments and experts – not only for this, but also for future crises. Read more about our research approach here.

If you are working as a scientist, no matter if you work on COVID-19 related issues or not – please contribute to this mission. The second round of surveys is now open! You can fill in the survey here.

Karlijn Roex

Karlijn Roex recently joined the University of Amsterdam as postdoctoral researcher. She completed her PhD at the Max Planck Institute for Societies in Cologne. Her main interest lies in medical sociology.

Giovanni Colavizza

Giovanni Colavizza is assistant professor for Digital Humanities at the University of Amsterdam. He uses computational methods to understand the workings of scientific discovery.

Latest news

  • Our dataset is now openly accessible
    The data of our NWO Corona Fast-Track Data study is now openly accessible at Zenodo. There you can download our dataset, questionnaire and read about our methodology. Read more here!
  • Communicating science in times of COVID-19
    The COVID-19 pandemic has transformed the channels and methods through which scientific findings are communicated. Instead of…
  • The second round of surveys is open for participants! [Closed]
    Our second round of surveys on the communication behavior of scientists during the pandemic is online. Participate now! [Survey is closed now]
  • First results from our COVID-19 survey
    The SARS-CoV-2 pandemic generated an ‘infodemic’: an overabundance of often contradictory or fake information. Scientists play an important role in generating reliable information and in informing the public. We assessed their reaction to this ‘infodemic’, and the role they are playing to counteract it.
  • ‘Corona: fast-track data’ grant by the NWO
    Our research into science communication during the crisis got awarded a fast-track NWO grant