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Accepted Contribution:

Media representation of scientists in the main Brazilian TV news programme: epistemic injustice and reaffirmation of stereotypes during the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic  
Amanda Medeiros (INCT-CPCT Fiocruz) Marina Ramalho (Oswaldo Cruz Foundation) Thaiane Oliveira (UFF) Charlene Soares (Universidade Federal Fluminense) Camilla Tavares Eleonora Magalhães (Universidade Federal Fluminense) Michelle da Costa Pereira Carneiro (Universidade Federal Rural do Rio de Janeiro (UFRRJ)) Luisa Massarani (Fundação Oswaldo Cruz)

Short abstract:

We analyze, under the lens of epistemic injustice, the media representation of scientists in Brazil during the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic in the main TV news Brazilian program. We observed information about gender, race and age of the scientists in news about vaccination.

Long abstract:

With the Covid-19 pandemic, scientific authority began to be routinely consulted by mainstream media. In this framework, our goal was to analyze, under the lens of epistemic injustice, the media representation of scientists in Brazil during the first year of the public health crisis. We start from the hypothesis that, with the pandemic, the plurality of scientific voices explored by Brazilian journalism was accompanied by a diversity of gender, race and age. To this end, we applied a research protocol and quantitatively analyzed newscasts on the country’s main TV news program, Jornal Nacional, where scientists were interviewed on the subject of “vaccination”, a topic of broad interest given that the vaccine had been presented since the beginning of the pandemic as a response to cope with the public health crisis. We discuss information about gender, race and age, the speaking and screen times of the scientists, and the format in which they are inserted into the news report. The data reveal that the predominant image of the scientist broadcast to the audience – a mature white man – reinforces stereotypes that persist in the media and in the public understanding of science. These stereotypes feed the logic of epistemic injustice that historically has kept minority groups (such as women and black people) away from spaces for the production of science. The results, therefore, contradict our initial hypothesis indicating that we cannot talk about changes in the standard of representation of scientists in the context of the public health crisis.

Combined Format Open Panel P048
Justice-oriented science communication research: sharing knowledge, building a network (papers and discussion workshop)
  Session 3 Tuesday 16 July, 2024, -