Comparing COVID response strategies opens insights on trust in science

May 26, 2021

The public discourse around trust in science has been too narrowly construed as a matter of believing the scientific pronouncements of national health authorities, argue Trust in Science faculty lead Sheila Jasanoff, along with her colleague Stephen Hilgartner in a recent piece in VerfassungsblogDrawing on insights from the ongoing Comparative COVID Response (CompCoRe) project, they note that national political and economic systems had as much to do with the systems of trust in pandemic response than the health systems.

The project's cross-national comparative nature has allowed the researchers to draw out more general claims around trust in science, including that "the analytic starting point for understanding the phenomenon of trust has to be within national political systems and not in the technocratic domains of either health or economic expertise – let alone in some aggregated, survey-based index of public understanding of science."

Jasanoff S and Hilgartner S (2021) A Stress Test for Politics: Insights from the Comparative Covid Response Project (CompCoRe) 2020. In: Verfassungsblog. Available at: (accessed 26 May 2021).