We are living in a time where we have greater access to lifesaving medicines and treatments than ever before.
But we’re also seeing a surge in the rejection of the medical research and the scientific community in general, with anti-vaccination activists and climate change sceptics building followings and taking seats in government.
How do we bridge the divide to those who have lost trust in science?
Dr Ben Goldacre – epidemiologist, columnist and author of the books Bad Pharma and Bad Science – believes that greater transparency around the data used in research and better communication of results is the answer.
And he thinks the public can understand a lot more about scientific research than either the media or academia gives them credit for.
The University of New South Wales' Dr Darren Saunders spoke to Dr Goldacre about his first forays into writing about science for The Guardian, his current project exploring reporting practices in medical journals and why he believes science communication is the answer.
Darren Saunders is Senior Lecturer in Medicine, UNSW.